Board of Directors

TOM BAIRD:  Business owner -Chairman of the Board

KAY BRADSHAW:  Educator-  Board Treasurer 

SETH JOHNSON J.D.: Attorney- Board Secretary

SHERI REED: Special Educator Mesa School District

CHRIS CLARIDGE: CPA Chandler Regional Hospital- Board Member

SHARON BAIRD:  Board Member

DAVID CASE: US Air Center

Dr. Curtis Johnson :Dentist

ANDY FLETCHER: IT

VIRGINIA ("GINA") JOHNSON : Founder/Executive Director: Sharing Down Syndrome Arizona - Board Member

History of Sharing

FACTS ABOUT DOWN SYNDROME

  • It is not relatedto race,nationality, religion or social-economic status.
  • In the United States, approximately one in every 691 children is born with Down syndrome.
  • Approximatey 300,000 families in the United States have a child with Down syndrome.
  • About 80 percent of babies with Down syndrome are born to mothers under age 35.
  • People with Down syndrome widely vary in mental abilities, physical development and behavior.
  • Individuals with Down syndrome benefit from loving homes, ealry intervention programs, education, appropriate medical care adn postive public attitudes.
  • In adulthood, many people with Down syndrome hold  jobs, live independently and enjoy community life, just like everyone else.

SHARING DOWN SYNDROME ARIZONA was founded 1991 by Virginia (Gina) Johnson, the proud mother of seven great children including her son David (now 30) who has Down syndrome. When Gina’s son David, was born a critically ill newborn baby and with Down syndrome she felt as if her world had come crashing down around her.  

The information medical professionals gave to Gina about her son only made her grieve all the more. They seemed only to tell her all her son would not do or ever be. But soon Gina realized the doctors, though well meaning, forgot to tell her the most important fact of all…that she would love her son with all her heart.

Gina never wanted another parent to grieve as much as she did when she learned of her son's diagnosis. In 1991 she invited 5 families into her home to "share" the joys and unique challenges that come when raising a child with Down syndrome. Her desire was to educate, empower but especially give hope to newly diagnosed families.

Sharing was founded to provide the needed positive parent support so families could go through the natural grieving process that would occur knowing they were not alone.

What began with five families has now gronw to over 4,000. We provides NEW PARENT WELCOME FOLDERS to all AZ birthing hospialsfilled with relevant and current information about Down syndrome.

We personally visit each new family and to provide the positive emotional support they will need. We brng them a beautiful NEW PARENT GIFT PACKAGE filled with books (Babies with Down syndrome, a New Parent Guide, Changed by a Child, Hope for the Families, Gifts- Mother share how a child with Down syndrome has enriched their lives, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Children with Special Needs), DVD Signing Times, CD (Far Different Places by Janice Kapp Perry), a beautiful Journal with the baby’s name and birth date imprinted and even their boastful bumper sticker, “My Kid Has More Chromosomes Than Your Kid!" and much more. (AZ residents only)

Sharing has been the recipient of the Outstanding Parent Support organization for the past five years. Sharing Down Syndrome Arizona was the November 2009 recipient for the channel “12 Who Care Award”.

ALL SHARING PARENT SUPPORT MEETINGS AND

EDUCATIONAL WORKSHOPS FREE TO FAMILIES