The Down Syndrome Association (DSA) Mauritius is a
registered non-profit organisation dedicated to improving
the lives of people with Down syndrome (DS) and
advocating for the rights of people with DS to be cherished
and embraced as key contributors to the socio-economic
development of the society. DSA is affiliated with Down
Syndrome International (DSi) and represents a member
of the Federation of People with Disabilities Organisation
(DPO). Founded in April 2012, we represents the leading
national Down syndrome association to support, advice,
friendship, advocacy and
Our Vision: To create
inclusion and personal
development of people
with Down syndrome and
be the leading human
rights organisation for
all individuals with Down
Our Mission: To serve
people with Down
syndrome by providing
and social support
programs delivered in
partnership in all aspects
of their lives.
Our Objective is to promote the interests of people with
Down syndrome and their families through advocacy,
public awareness, education and information.
Our Golden Values/Rules:
• Respect: Show respects, dignity, justice and regards for
children and adults with Down syndrome and their families
• Equality: Combat discrimination and promotes the active
inclusion and full participation of children and adults with
Down syndrome in the society in line with the human right
to disability issues and SDG4 goals. Promote equal access
to health services.
• Socialisation: promote decent living conditions to people
with Down syndrome and ensure that they enjoy all benefits
and participate in community/social-based services
• Collaboration & Unity: partner and foster a network
with professionals, parents, researchers, international
bodies, government and non-governmental bodies in the
movement of Down syndrome community
• Accountability: Ensure the highest standard of
accountability to our well-wishers, volunteers, humble
investors and advocate for the rights of people with Down
syndrome to be valued
• Awareness: Raise awareness about the potential and
ability of people with Down syndrome
• Integrity: Encourage the children and adults with Down
syndrome to be independent, honest and be active creators
in their day-to-day lives
Which are your areas of operations?
Serving people with Down syndrome, their parents and
families with social support programs around the island of
Mauritius. Working in collaborations with Ministry of Social
Security, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health and
Ministry of Gender ,Children and Family Welfare.
How many persons with DS do you have on your data
base so far?
So far, we have around 60 people with DS. They are more
or less active participants to any activities organised
by the association. Presently, we are developing a
proper online database to compile credentials of people
with DS and their parents. This is an innovative programme
which aims towards more advocacies, counselling and
What are their challenges?
• Coping, Adaptation and integration in the normal stream
• Quality Inclusive education for the people with DS
• Medical and health problems
• Funding for chronic health problems
• Employment and integration as professionals in the
• Lack of support towards DS personal development and
• Lack of common platform for networking with all DSs
There is in fact an exhaustive list for challenges in Mauritius
to be met by people with DS and their families. But the
above lists provide general challenges that they usually
face in Mauritius.
What are your challenges as an organisation?
• To reduce/eliminate discrimination against people with DS
• To instil the culture of inclusive education for people with DS
• To integrate the people with DS in the labour market.
• Lack of funds for big projects
• Lack of support from the Government
• Many ONGs involved in social supports with their own
• No common platform
How best would you like government to work with you?
• A collaborative and partnership approach to meet the
social support for the people with DS and
• On-going consultation with the Government
to achieve big projects for the benefit of
people with DS and their families
• Sharing/networking platform for views and
feedback for any related projects for the
sake of people with DS
• Catered for national specific budget for
people with DS
• Progressive education programmes for the
people with DS.
What are your future plans as an
1. Organising Health Caravan week
People with Down syndrome are prone to
several major medical conditions. In light with
this, another objective of MSA (Mauritius) is
to pledge to the Ministry of Health in
organising and promoting a medical ‘Health
for All’ caravan to persons with disability. The
observance of this ‘Health for All’ aims to
promote an understanding of disability key health issues
and to provide the appropriate medical treatment to the
well-being of persons with disabilities.
Also, it is essential for parents having children with
disabilities be aware of the clear medical treatment/
assessment to be catered for their children. Medical
campaign for these families can provide a means by
which many of these issues can be brought to the surface
and ensure that parents are not even remotely aware of
the pain which their child feels.
The DSA (Down Syndrome Association) will welcome
persons with disabilities to join the Health Caravan to
empower and facilitate their active healthier lifestyles.
This Health Caravan campaign will ensure that people
with disabilities benefit equally from any public health
care programmes and to make services accessible and
provide comprehensive assessments, treatment and
2. Creating a Centralized Down Syndrome database in
The number of invalid persons have significantly
increased in Mauritius. However, the number of people
having Down syndrome in Mauritius is actually a mystery
and unknown. The objective of this project is to create
a database with the profile of all individuals with Down
syndrome in Mauritius. A survey will be conducted to
investigate individuals with Down syndrome. The DSA
(Down Syndrome Association) is joining hands with the
Ministry of Social Security in the attainment of this mission
by providing access to people with disabilities. However,
issues might arise relating to privacy and confidentiality
of information that will be included into the database.
Moreover, issues like consent and how to maintain the
database and how to raise funds must be addressed
before implementing this project.
3. Close partnership with DSi (Down syndrome
International) icw the promotion of Inclusive
Education in Mauritius
4. Training/workshop for young DS and parents
5. Discussion platform and partnership with professionals
and parents for the benefits of children with DS
Names of Board of Directors: 2017-2018
President : Mrs Josiane Migale Herbu -( Parent)
Vice-President: Mr. Ali Jookhun – ( Founder Member )
Secretary : Mrs Gisèle Vinglassalon -(Parent)
Assistant Secretary : Miss Merle Marina- ( Parent)
Treasurer : Mrs Lisette Marie Margaret Liseby-( Parent).
Assistant Treasurer : Miss Merle Christabelle -( Young Advocate)
Committee Members : Mrs Sanger Micheline -( Parent).
Miss Chandoo Élodie -( Young Advocate).
Mr. Hamza Toorab -( Parent)
Mrs. Gooria Vandanah – ( Parent) and PR of DSA