Description of the project

According to WHO “the estimated incidence of Down Syndrome is between 1 in 1,000 to 1 in 1,100 live births worldwide. Each year approximately 3,000 to 5,000 children are born with this chromosome disorder”. 

People with Down syndrome are more likely to develop a premature pathological ageing due, among others, to reasons of a neurobiological nature. Usually, people with Down syndrome older than 30 shows symptoms of ageing. This pathological ageing is associated with dementia processes and cognitive and behavioral disorders. 

DS-AGEING aims at increasing competences (attitudes, skills, knowledge) of people with Down syndrome over 30 years old, professionals and families about how to improve the Well-Ageing (according to the Active Ageing Model) through an innovative training program.

DS-AGEING was created to overcome: 

  • Lack of adapted methodologies to transfer knowledge and methods to People with Down syndrome and professionals in an affordable way. 

  • Lack of adapted tools to the abilities of people with Down syndrome, including ICT solutions, to implement the recommended actions, including cognitive stimulation.

  • Lack of an integrated and inclusive approach that takes into account the supports of people with Down syndrome (family and community members).

Specific objectives

  • To promote prevention and identification of physical and cognitive effects of ageing. 

  • To transfer adapted methods and tools in doing physical activities and cognitive stimulation in order to prevent the effects of ageing and train in their use.

  • To foster in doing independent and inclusive activities and community participation. 

  • To prepare people with Down syndrome in the absence of support received by parents and tutors throughout their lives, including the correct management of the legal and economic aspects derived from the ageing.

  • To identify, analyze and train in the use of ICT solutions that could support the whole process of "Well-Ageing". 

DS-AGEING will be a unique and innovative Training since is based on: 

  • Adaptation and spread of the Active Ageing Model within the Down Syndrome collective, according to the increase of their life expectancy.

  • Direct involvement and training of people with Down syndrome who have started the ageing process. 

  • Combination of Active Ageing and Quality of Life Model for people with disabilities.

  • Involving professionals and families as "supports", not only as caregivers. 

  • Training people with Down syndrome in the use of ICT Tools with potential for Active Ageing.

An active ageing model for people with Down syndrome should consider at least the following aspects: 

  • Prevention and slowdown of premature cognitive decline 

  • Prevention and slowdown of premature physical decline

  • Keeping permanent activity achieved in childhood and youth while adapting them to the ageing situation

  • Keeping and/or promoting inclusion and community living to foster interpersonal relationships and links with related groups.

  • Legal and economic protection and preparation for the absence of support given by parents or guardians throughout life