PLYMOUTH Friday is World Down Syndrome Day, a global awareness celebration, with events taking place around the world.
From flash mobs to panel discussions, people are taking part in spreading the message, now in its 9th year. The United Nations has recognized the day since 2012.
Locally, one family is celebrating through song. Chad Van Herk, a Plymouth native, put together a video in honor of his nephew, Keel, who was born with Down syndrome. On Friday, Van Herk shared his message with 16 Morning News.
"I wrote the song recalling how his [Keel] birth affected the immediate family and our network of friends," said Van Herk. "And how quickly the apprehension and fear dissolved, giving way to so much love and of course an endless supply of smiles for and from Keel. He's so awesome!"
Van Herk is donating 100% of the proceeds from "A Smile for Everyone" to National Down Syndrome Society.
Other events taking place around and near Michiana include:
-Chico's clothing store in Granger will donate 10% of each purchase to the Michiana Down Syndrome Family Support & Advocacy Group
Click here for the Facebook page.
-A group in Indy is hosting a "3, 2, 1" dance flash mob at the Indianapolis International Airport at 3 p.m.
Click here to learn more.
-Members of the Down Syndrome community and their supporters will meet in the Capitol Rotunda in Lansing, Michigan.
Click here for details.
-Down Syndrome Awareness Open House in Highland, in Lake County.
Click here for more information.