As told by Hiranya Nishika,
Down syndrome, also known as trisomy 21, is a genetic disorder caused by the presence of all or part of a third copy of chromosome 21. Decreased or poor muscle tone, short neck, with excess skin at the back of the neck, flattened facial profile and nose, small head, ears, and mouth are some of its symptoms. Each person with Down syndrome is an individual, with a distinctive appearance, personality and abilities. These beautiful souls are creative and imaginative in play and mischief and have the same emotions as other children. Many children with Down syndrome may grow up to live independent lives with varying degrees of support and accommodation needed, while others may require ongoing support and more sheltered living accommodation.
Concerning about all these issues, us, the Rotaractors decided not only to spend an evening with people who are having Down syndrome, but also to celebrate Christmas with them. This is how “Joy of Christmas” was initiated. “Joy of Christmas”, is a joint project organized by the Rotaract Clubs of Alumni of University of Moratuwa, Panadura and University of Moratuwa.
The Rotaractors chose Special Education School and Home for Girls in Moratuwa, which was home for 31 children and adults, aged between 8 and 60. 17th of December 2017 was the day that the project took place. Out of 31, 22 were there for the Christmas party, while others were gone to visit their parents. The session started with two beautiful Christmas carols which was sung by the Rotaractors of University of Moratuwa. The children were fascinated and joined the Rotaractors in singing. After that some fun games were held to entertain the children.
Musical chairs, hat passing and balloon dancing were the fun games which was organized and both children and the adults participated enthusiastically in them. The Rotaractors joined them in the balloon dancing event and the children were so contented. Songs were sung in between these fun events. It was very heart warming and sad at the same time seeing those beautiful and cheerful faces. In the meantime, the children were given tea and short eats. Since this was a Christmas party, it’ll be a huge mistake if there wasn’t a Santa clause. So a Rotaractor of University of Moratuwa dressed as one and entertained the children and the adults of the home. Gifts and toffees were given to them and they didn’t forget to dance with the Santa. It was a massive happiness for the children, and their faces silently told us about how fun it was for them. The project was concluded successfully and token of appreciations were given to all the workers of the home.
There is one thing that we learnt from this project. That is,
“The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is just that little extra”.