October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month, and SMILE on Down Syndrome is ready to kick things off with their 18th annual SMILE Mile advocacy walk event!

Nikki Davis stopped by to give us the details:

The SMILE MILE (previously known as the Buddy Walk) will be held Saturday, October 5, 2019 at the Vanderburgh County 4-H Center and will include a 1-mile walk. Following the SMILE MILE, there will be food, entertainment, fun activities for the children, an opportunity for team photos, and information tables for the adults.

Walk registration begins at 9:00 AM, with the SMILE MILE activities starting at 10:00 AM. The day’s events will end at 12:00 PM

The goal of the 2019 SMILE ON DOWN SYNDROME SMILE MILE is to celebrate National Down Syndrome Awareness Month in October and promote acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome. Nationally, the Down syndrome awareness walks and events raise more than $8.5 million, and on a local level we will raise money to support critical programs and services. Locally, our goal is to to raise $70,000 to help support the goals of S.M.I.L.E. on Down Syndrome. SMILE serves hundreds of families who have a loved one with Down syndrome, and has expanded to reach the disability community as a whole. The SMILE Center was opened in 2011 at 105 NW 4th St., Evansville, IN and continues to provide vital opportunities for people of all ages from newborn to adults.

Tens of thousands of people have participated in this event since our first walk, including children, young adults with Down syndrome, family members, friends, politicians, healthcare professionals, business leaders, high school and college students, fraternities, sororities, corporate teams and other community members. Thousands of people are expected to participate in the 2019 SMILE ON DOWN SYNDROME SMILE MILE this year.


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