My Great Story: Charlotte resident advocates on behalf of her sister in national public awareness campaign to raise awareness for Down syndrome

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The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) and its Ambassadors are pleased to report the progress of its latest public awareness campaign, My Great Story, which serves to honor and celebrate the 400,000 Americans with Down syndrome.

Charlotte resident Anne Lynn has participated in the campaign on behalf of her sister, Kay. In recalling the preparations and celebrations in honor of Kay’s 40th birthday, just over a decade ago, Lynn shares a story of love and family, despite potential differences. “The night of her party defined what I’ve always felt: the love, the goodness, and the inexpressible impact Kay has had on my life,” Lynn writes, “she continues to play a major part in the closeness of our family.” Having Kay as a sister has taught Lynn and her siblings “how not to live with blame, self-pity or unfairness in life.” Lynn’s inspirational story joins others like in the My Great Story online storybook collection.

The My Great Story campaign, launched last September, has garnered strong visibility in a profound timeframe. To date, over $3.5 million has been donated in national and regional ad space and services. There have been over 115 million impressions across the country, which include placements in publications such as Allure, Fortune, Newsweek, Time, USA Today and Vogue, among other noteworthy outlets. The My Great Story campaign has attracted other types of media as well, including placements in bars, checkout counters and hospital patient and waiting rooms. The CNN Airport Network has joined the effort as well, broadcasting the My Great Story PSA starring John C. McGinley in airports across the country.

The My Great Story campaign seeks to ignite a new way of thinking about people with Down syndrome by showcasing and collecting inspirational stories told by people with Down syndrome as well as their family members, friends, colleagues, employers and many others. These stories will be displayed in a beautiful online storybook.

Americans across the country can visit www.ndss.org/stories to read and share their stories. The online storybook contains several different categories including school, work, hobbies, travel, friends and many others. Two of the stories have been turned into print ads titled ‘The Traveler’ and ‘The Public Speaker.’ They were shot by well-known photographer Zachary Scott, and have been featured in media outlets across the country.

Down syndrome occurs when an individual has three, rather than two, copies of the 21st chromosome. One in every 733 babies is born with Down syndrome. Life expectancy for people with Down syndrome has increased dramatically in recent decades- from 25 in 1983 to 60 today. People with Down syndrome attend school, work; participate in decisions that affect them, and contribute to society in many ways.

About My Great Story (MGS)

MGS was created pro-bono by NY based Ad Agency, Pedone. After 14 months of market analysis the Pedone team developed a campaign in an effort to shape the future for all people with Down syndrome. The online story book was developed by CT based Interactive Agency York and Chapel, who spent over 12 months developing the user friendly technology, sophisticated design and esthetics, and incorporation of the spectacular print ads shot by Zachary Scott. To learn more about our amazing agencies visit: www.pedone.com or www.yorkandchapel.com.

About NDSS

The National Down Syndrome Society is a nonprofit organization representing the more than 400,000 Americans with Down syndrome. The mission of NDSS is to be the national advocate for the value, acceptance and inclusion of people with Down syndrome. The National Down Syndrome Society envisions a world in which all people with Down syndrome have the opportunity enhance their quality of life, realize their life aspirations, and become valued members of welcoming community. NDSS has over 275 affiliates nationwide.

To learn more visit www.ndss.org.

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