The twelfth of April is International Down Syndrome Day, with social activism programs and educational seminars being conducted around the world to mark the occasion. In Israel, Shalva has been partnering with Hadassah Medical Center for the past six years to host Israel largest conference on the subject of Down syndrome.

The conference was opened with remarks from the CEO’s of the Israel’s National Insurance Agency, Jerusalem Municipality and the National Ministry of Social Welfare and Social Services Developmental Disabilities branch. Professor Eitan Kerem, director of the hospitals Down Syndrome Center as well as Kalman Samuels, Shalva’s founder and chairman offered additional words of welcome.

This year’s conference was comprised of two segments, with the morning’s presentations focusing on the most recent scientific research and developments. Topics included development of motivation, establishing healthy sleep habits as well as learning and meta-communication skills.

The conference second gathering focused on society and the arts with a resounding performance from the Shalva Band as well as other performances. Speakers also discussed the topics of transitioning into mainstream educational facilities and handing the bureaucratic hurdles associated with raising a child with disabilities.

Shalva’s position as coordinator and host of the event is sterling display of Shalva’s leadership in the field of disability care and as a forerunner in the dissemination of new, replicable models that benefit the entire community. Shalva is proud of its partnerships and the new frontiers that are being blazed through joint efforts.