Our Newsletter

  • Mon, June 01, 2015 3:49 PM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    Volunteer Value Hits $23.07 An Hour

    The value of a volunteer hour was up 52 cents to $23.07 in 2014, according to the latest estimate released by Independent Sector (IS). In a recent article by Mark Hrywna in The Nonprofit Times (NPT), the values were reported to range from a low of $19.31 in Arkansas to a high of $39.86 per hour in the District of Columbia. The "average" figure is indexed by IS to determine state values and then increased by 12% to estimate for fringe benefits. The estimated value in your state can be used to value the contributions of volunteers to your organization.

    According to NPT's article, the value of a volunteer hour crossed the $20 mark in 2008 and was only estimated at $16.27 in 2001. About 62.6 million Americans gave 7.7 billion hours of volunteer service worth $173 billion in 2013, according to the Corporation for National and Community Service. You can review IS's information here.

    New VolunteerMatch Book Is Al About Ideas

    VolunteerMatch’s new book on volunteer engagement for nonprofits, Volunteer Engagement 2.0: Ideas and Insights Changing the World, is now available for purchase. Author Robert Rosenthal asked 35 of the smartest volunteer engagement consultants, trainers, and practitioners to share their thoughts on what’s truly important for transforming volunteerism into lasting impact. The result? An awesome collection of “ideas”. 

    Rosenthal (in a recent VolunteerMatch blog post) explains that the publication strikes a balance between actionable strategy and broad discussion of the issues surrounding volunteerism. “Volunteer Engagement 2.0 helps readers craft a strategy that reflects their organization’s mission,” said Rosenthal, and lists some of the ways you’ll be able to get immediate benefit from Volunteer Engagement 2.0: 

    • Track the history of volunteerism, as well as the social, cultural, and technological shifts that will shape its future.
    • Keep current volunteers on board, and engage additional volunteers, donors, and board members.
    • Use new tools and trends such as social media, microvolunteering, virtual volunteering, and hackathons.
    • Recruit corporate partners, adopt skilled volunteers, and identify pro bono resources.
    • Quantify and evaluate your volunteer program’s effectiveness, and adjust your strategies. 

    You can purchase the book here.

    Do you have volunteer materials to share with other DSAIA members? Learn how to submit your items to the DSAIA Resource Library by emailing us today at

  • Fri, May 01, 2015 11:43 AM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    Publication Highlights Value of

     Employees with DS

    "The value that employees with Down syndrome can add to organizations" a study performed by McKinsey & Company for the project Another Glimpse from Alana Institute, was released in March 2014 and showed that the inclusion of people with Down syndrome generates positive impact in five of nine areas that measure organizational health, such as leadership, customer satisfaction, culture and climate, team motivation, coordination and control. The study also revealed that a healthy company is more likely to present an above-average profit with the inclusion of people with Down syndrome. Marcus Frank, senior consultant at McKinsey, presented the study at the United Nations (UN) in New York, on World Down Syndrome Day. During his speech, Marcus said that McKinsey accepted the challenge of this research because they believe that "companies should promote inclusion at the workplace, not out of obligation but because of the improvements in competitiveness," he said.   

    This year's UN theme is "My Opportunities, My Choices – Enjoying Full and Equal Rights and the Role of Families" and it has total synergy with the McKinsey’s study. "This study is an incentive for parents to continue to invest in the education of their children with Down syndrome because the market is seeing their value. They are recognizing the potential of these young people and, therefore, companies are opening their doors to hire more of them, " says Claudia Moreira, project coordinator of Another Glimpse. The survey interviewed 2,000 employees from several companies and 83% of them said that the presence of a person with Down syndrome causes the leader to become more able to resolve conflicts. The consultancy also spoke with 20 human resource leaders of national and foreign companies, as well as directors of institutions that support people with intellectual disabilities in Brazil, USA, Canada and Europe. The project, Another Glimpse (or Outro Olhar in Portuguese), was born with the mission of raising awareness about the singularities and skills of people with Down syndrome. It believes that a society can only win when it recognizes the potential of diversity that will bring us a better future. It does this through the production and dissemination of knowledge about Down syndrome. Learn more at

    The publication is available for download here Instituto Alana is a member of DSAIA.

    Dealing With Competition Within the DS Community

    DSAIA has scheduled a"Topical Call" on Wednesday, May 6, 2015 from 8 pm -10 pm ET to discuss a very interesting and popular topic of conversation lately in the Down syndrome community: non-DSAs as competition. Local DSAs are seeing other organizations come into their area which may threaten their member and donor bases. These organizations may or may not be Down syndrome-focused, but they do target services to individuals with Down syndrome and possibly duplicate services. 

    Over the years, the local Down syndrome organization has wrestled with other DSAs who might serve overlapping areas (or even the same area). This is nothing new. However, several organizations have expressed that this new situation with centers springing up in their area brings a new set of issues and can impact the local DSA negatively even when a partnership is established. 

    In this call, DSAIA will try to delve into the following questions (among others): Is a non-DSA a threat to existing organizations? Can the non-DSA complement an existing organization?  What factors need to be considered?

    This is a members-only call moderated by DSAIA's Executive Director, Deanna Tharpe. Others can attend the call by invitation-only. If you would like to learn more about the call or register, go to DSAIA's Upcoming Trainings page for details. 

  • Wed, April 01, 2015 4:05 PM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    How Leaky Is Your Bucket?

    Even some of the finest fund development programs have leaks—pockets of inefficiency that, left unaddressed, will continue to reduce the support the nonprofit organization receives from its fundraising program. "The Leaky Bucket:What’s Wrong with Your Fundraising and How You Can Fix It"is a groundbreaking webinar that will show you how to find the leaks and plug them quickly and effectively. 

    Don't miss this two-part webinar series which airs  Tuesday, April 7th and Tuesday, April 21st at 1 pm ET/10 am PT. Each webinar will be 1 1/2 hours of great information for your organization. Free to members of DSAIA, register today! Not a member, you can register for the low cost of $75. 

    Affiliate of the Year Awards

    Congratulations to our Affiliate of the Year winners for 2014. The Affiliates in Excellence Awards, sponsored by MetLife, are presented at the annual leadership conference and include a number of categories.

    To view the entire list of winners (and their submissions), visit the DSAIA website. Your affiliate can be in the spotlight next year - award categories will remain the same. Consider your submissions now!

    Book Spotlight: An Uncomplicated Life

    In An Uncomplicated Life, the parent learns as much about life from the child as the child does from the parent. Through her unmitigated love for others, her sparkling charisma, and her boundless capacity for joy, Jillian has inspired those around her to live better and more fully. The day Jillian was born, Paul says, was the last bad day. As he lovingly writes, “Jillian is a soul map of our best intentions”—a model of grace, boundless joy, and love for all of us.

    The author, Paul Daugherty, has been a sports columnist for the Cincinnati Enquirer since 1994. He has covered nearly every major American sporting event, as well as five Summer Olympic Games.  He is the author of Fair Game, a collection of his sports columns, and coauthor of books with Chad Johnson and Johnny Bench.  He blogs daily at The Morning Line on  He lives in Loveland, Ohio, with his wife, Kerry. The book was released in March by Harper Collins Publishers and can be purchased in hardcover or e-book form through various outlets.

  • Sun, February 01, 2015 4:08 PM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    Is The Conference Your Board/Staff Retreat?

    The annual DSAIA Leadership Conference is more than a convention, it's a board retreat and staff development opportunity. The J.W. Marriott Resort & Spa is a beautiful location for the upcoming event   but are you utilizing the event to create a "board/staff retreat" opportunity for your organization? Packed with professional speakersfrom both the Down syndrome and nonprofit community, it's an amazing value to your whole team.

    And while the hotel may pamper you with spa options, DSAIA will surround you with incredible networking options, delicious meals, and some great technology perks.  Keep connected to your organization or home with free WiFi in your room and on the conference floor and utilize our new mobile app to make your experience more engaging. Register today!

    Global Down Syndrome Foundation Grant Survey

    Providing timely and important feedback for our members and from our members is an important aspect of the work of DSAIA. 

    To this end, we hope you will support us by taking five to ten minutes to fill out a survey that will help one of our founding members – the Global Down Syndrome Foundation. The survey is aimed to improve their existing local Down syndrome organization outreach, existing grant program and to ascertain if an additional grant program would be welcomed.

    Access the survey by clicking here. Thanks so much for supporting DSAIA and our members!

    NDSS & DSAIA Announce Stephen Beck, Jr. Scholarship

    Steve Beck Jr., was a part of DSAIA from its birth almost ten years ago, and most recently the former Vice Chairman of the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS).  His life was dedicated to bettering the lives of individuals with Down syndrome and the organizations that serve them.  We are proud to have worked alongside him and we all benefit from his successes.  He will be dearly missed. 

    In honor of his many accomplishments and to encourage Down syndrome affiliates to pick up the reigns, NDSS and DSAIA are proud to announce the Stephen Beck Jr. "ABLE Act" Affiliate Advocacy Scholarship. The winner of this honor will receive a one-year membership to DSAIA for their organization valued at $995.  Applications will be accepted until February 25, 2015.  Applicants should complete this brief application. The winner will be announced Sunday, March 8th at the DSAIA Affiliates In Excellence Breakfast by the leadership of NDSS at the Annual DSAIA Leadership Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.

  • Thu, January 01, 2015 4:21 PM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    World Down Syndrome Day: New Campaign Launched

    In early December over 50 leaders from Down syndrome organizations across the United States (and beyond) attended the webinar launch of a new awareness campaign created for World Down Syndrome Day. The campaign, which was created by a coalition of national and international Down syndrome organizations, is based on the concept of "Random Acts of Kindness" and has met with good response from the community. 

    Work continues on the toolkit, but interested organizations (or individuals) can view the webinar here. The toolkit can be downloaded during the webinar replay or by clicking here. Expect additions to the toolkit in the coming months including a Spanish translation.

    Why Not Make Saving Money for Your

    Organization Your New Year's Resolution?

    Just 8% of Americans achieve their New Year's resolution. That is unacceptable to Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action. You have your strategic plan in place...let's make it EASY to succeed in 2015 by resolving to save money for your Down syndrome organization. 

    Members of DSAIA have been saving money since the launch of the trade association in 2010. Whether it's savings on office supplies, insurance, event software or credit card processing, there is certainly an opportunity to start off the year saving. And in 2015, DSAIA has resolved to research and add even more VIP (Value-Incentive-Purchase) Offers for our members. (Want to get involved? We have VIP Committee openings!)

    And consider passing on savings to your membership as well. Check out two offers aimed at families for legal services and monitoring devices. You'll find all of the 22 available offers here.

    NDSC and DSAIA Team Up for Adult  Sibling Toolkit Webinar

    In February, NDSC and DSAIA are teaming up to help you help adults with Down syndrome and their families. We will be presenting a webinar on customizing the NDSC adult sibling toolkit for families entitled Making the Adult Sibling Toolkit Work for Your Members.

    As you know, people with Down syndrome are living into their 40s, 50s, and even 60s, and for the most part, they continue to live in the family home with their parents. We recognize that for many families, not just those affected by Down syndrome, conversations between parents and adult children on the topics of death, medical incapacitation, healthcare directives and wills are difficult. They are often put off, and in worst cases these conversations NEVER HAPPEN.

    Adult siblings who want to be involved in their brother or sister's life but are not familiar with the details involved can use this toolkit to have discussions with their parents. They can learn how to be an effective advocate, friend, and perhaps 
    caregiver for their sibling after their parents are no longer able. 

    As an affiliate, customizing the Adult Sibling Toolkit with state-specific laws regarding wills, trusts, and guardianship, and local resources for transportation, employment, independent living, etc., will be invaluable to your older members. We will show you which sections most frequently need your affiliate input and strategize methods for getting the toolkit into the hands of families and most importantly, help them to follow through with the task of completing it. 

    Register today! (This is an open webinar for members and nonmembers alike, sponsored by the National Down Syndrome Congress.)   

  • Thu, May 31, 2012 10:51 AM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    Hiring Staff: A New Trend in the DS Community? 


    Employee of month sign 
    Several DSAIA affiliates have hired staff in the last few years. Some are moving from part-time to full-time positions while others are bringing in an employee for the first time. DSAIA spoke with two groups who have hired within the last few months.
    For the Down Syndrome Association of Greater Charlotte (DSACNC), a long-range planning breakout session at the 2008 DSAIA Conference was the beginning stage of hiring staff. The organization formed a Long-Range Planning Committee after the conference. Terri Leyton, DSACNC Program Director, explained that one of the committee's recommendations was to hire staff. "Ultimately, the Long-Range Planning Committee and the Board of Directors felt that if our organization was to grow and continue to provide quality programs to our members we would have to hire someone to take us to the next level," she said. After hiring two part-time employees in 2010, DSACNC recently hired their first full-time executive director this year.
    For the Down Syndrome Association of Delaware (DSAD), the story might be familiar to a lot of DSAIA members. "The board was getting burned out," said Karen Marsh, DSAD President. "A few of us were doing everything year after year. If we did get volunteer help, the task/program was often not a priority." The decision to hire staff was not a decision DSAD rushed into. The organization has been talking about hiring staff for more than five years. According to Marsh, the reaction to their new hire has been fantastic.  
    Staff titles and job duties are a priority when planning a new hire. DSAD made the decision to hire a part-time program director. "After talking with numerous other affiliates, we decided that made the most sense," said Marsh. "Programming is the heart of what we do. Getting the programming done would free up our board to do other things - grants, other fundraising opportunities, chairing committees and recruiting members to get them involved." DSACNC hired a program director in 2010, but moved to hiring a full-time executive director in 2012 along with a contract employee to run their summer camp. "We contracted the services of a consulting firm that specializes in nonprofits both in 2010 and 2012 to help in the hiring process," said Leyton of DSACNC. "Our hiring committee consisted of board members, people from within the organization and a community partner with Human Resources expertise." DSAD created a hiring committee from board members, let them review applications and do the initial round of interviews. The final interviews were with the president (Marsh), vice-president and fundraising chair. "It helped a lot to see other affiliates' job descriptions," explained Marsh, who utilized the DSAIA Repository as a resource in the planning stages. "We had committee chairs write down areas they needed help. We then created our own description."  
    DSAD hired a recent graduate as their program director with the hope that she will "roll" into an executive director position in the next 2-5 years. While the organization advertised the position to their leadership and members as well, Marsh said that no one from within applied for the position. DSACNC did hire from within their organization, which is very common. "Although we had many applications come in from people both within and outside our organization," said Leyton, "the hiring committees found the best candidates for three of the four positions came from within the organization." Kathryn Lariviere (who was hired as the new executive director and was a former board member) said, "I feel like I've been interviewing for this position for the last six years!"

    Gaps in the Maps Survey Released 


    Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action (DSAIA), the National Down Syndrome Congress (NDSC) and the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) have partnered to ensure that all families have access to support and information from a local Down syndrome affiliate through the "Gaps in the Map" Project. The project's goal is to locate and document all Down syndrome support groups in order to identify what areas are not being served and then explore ways to provide that support to the "gap" areas. We need YOUR help in making this project a success by doing the following:
      1. Complete this BRIEF survey by clicking here.
      2. Forward this newsletter to all your friends in the Down syndrome community nationwide! Encourage them to fill out the survey!
      3. Tweet and share the survey link with other group leaders via social media!
      4. Talk about this project with at least one organization in the Down syndrome community today.
      5. Be creative! The more we share this project, the more families will receive the support and information they deserve!
      Stay tuned for a variety of fun and cool ways to share this project with your friends and friend organizations. Click herefor all the latest project details or visit us on Facebook
      For more information, contact Deanna Tharpe, DSAIA Executive Director, at or 701-425-7129 or Allison Wixted, DSAIA Gaps in the Map Chair, at or 804-920-9643. 

    What To Know When You're Hiring


    Hiring staff does have measurable benefits.  According to Maureen Gallagher and Louise Borke of Massachusetts Down Syndrome Congress (MDSC), it not only frees the board up to focus on governance rather than day-to-day operations, but also provides more responsiveness to your membership and consistency in your quality and programs.  If your decision is to hire staff, plan to devote 3-6 months to create the strategic plan, determine what position to hire first, and determine what you can afford (including salary and benefits). 



    Try researching other similar organization and the competitive landscape for professional staff in your area. Be sure and review the DSAIA 2011 Demographic Survey which includes staff number and salary information. Before you start hiring, ensure you have enough funds to pay for the staff person and related expenses for at least one year. For more information from MDSC's presentation on Hiring Staff from the 2012 DSAIA Leadership Conference, visit the DSAIA Repository’s 2012 Conference Powerpoints section.


    To get ahead of the tax and regulatory issues regarding hiring your first staff person, review the information from Charlene Hill's (DSAIA Treasurer) presentation from the 2012 Conference entitled "We've Hired Staff: Now What?". Both the MDSC and Hill presentations are full of information sure to help you as you start this journey. A large variety of employment documents (including Employee Manuals, Applications, Evaluation Tools, etc.) can be found in the DSAIA Repositoryunder Operations and Administration/Employees.

  • Tue, May 01, 2012 11:53 AM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    What Makes Your Readers "Click" 


    In a recent analysis of their newsletter, Madison Area Down Syndrome Society found what stories generate the most interest to their readers. It is harder and harder to compete with the amount of information that your members are bombarded with on a day-to-day basis, so knowing which stories are more likely to pique their interest is a vital bit of information. 


    So, what did MADSS find? Looking at a year of click-throughs, they found that the majority of "opens" were on human interest or inspiring stories about people with Down syndrome. Next on the list were family and personal accounts of living with a child/family member with Down syndrome and parenting a child with Down syndrome.  Other topics are listed in order below:

    • Medical research (the recent pre-natal article got quite a few hits)
    • Volunteer opportunities
    • Government bills associated with disabilities
    • Maintaining good health for people with Down Syndrome
    • Recommended area providers for MADSS members

    While interest seems to mainly be in stories about other people, MADSS' newsletter volunteer Alyssa Skiba noted that members are also interested in what the government is doing to help people with disabilities and how parents/family members can contribute to the healthy growth of their children. 


    Thanks to MADSS for sharing their research.  Want to learn more about what makes a great newsletter? Read this interesting article about how to avoid the most common newsletter mistakes.

    Are You Covered? 


    Your board members are

    volunteers who often make difficult decisions. That is why your organization should have Directors and Officers (D&O) insurance to protect them. The question is not "can you afford it" but rather "how can you not?"  Board members can be sued individually or as a group over a variety of reasons. Can your organization withstand a lawsuit and the costs involved?


    Not having such insurance can make it difficult to attract and retain good board members, who simply cannot afford to serve if they run such risk to their personal assets.  Some professionals are unwilling or unable to serve on a board without D&O insurance. 


    Learn more about coverage for both D&O and General Liability insurance by watching our two-part series entitled "Are You Covered?" in the DSAIA  Repository.  For discounts on insurance for your group, be sure and download the V.I.P. Insurance Discount Offer



    Self-Advocate Leadership A Top Priority


    david with group ndsc

    DSAIA Board Members (from left to right): David Egan, Joe Meares & Doris Erhart

    Including self-advocates in the board room successfully is the goal of the newly formed Self-Advocate Leadership Committee.  The committee, co-chaired by DSAIA board members Doris Erhart and David Egan, presented sessions at the 2012 DSAIA Conference and is now hard at work developing resources and training for affiliates. 


    The committee has already started compiling items to be included in a "toolkit" for boards. The toolkit's purpose is to give groups the necessary resources to make self-advocates a productive member of the board. Following the formulation of the toolkit, the committee plans to present a training webinar and present breakout sessions at the 2013 conference in Cincinnati.


    "While we have a good starting number," explains Doris Erhart, "we still need committee members with a wide range of backgrounds. We would like to have affiliate board members both with and without Down syndrome as well as those from groups who do not have a self-advocate on their board." If you are interested in joining the committee, contact Doris Erhart or David Egan today.

    Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action

    P.O. Box 2122

    Bismarck, ND 58502



    Copyright © 2012 Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action


  • Mon, April 02, 2012 3:46 PM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    DSAIA Board Member Speaks at United Nations 


    David Egan, board member of both Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action (DSAIA) and Down Syndrome Association of Northern Virginia (DSANV), had the opportunity to speak at the United Nations on World Down Syndrome Day. "David is a phenomenal speaker," said Deanna Tharpe, DSAIA Executive Director.  "His presentation at the U.N. was full of positive images, real issues, and a call to action.  It was a delight to watch him and know that his message was being heard by so many around the globe."
    David Egan @ The United Nations: World Down syndrome Day 03/21/2012
    David Egan @ The United Nations: World Down syndrome Day 03/21/2012


    It was the first time the United Nations has recognized the March 21st event.  "For too long, persons with Down syndrome, including children, have been left on the margins of society," UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said in a message to mark the World Day.  For decades the UN has worked to ensure all persons are given the rights they deserve, and in doing so, they adopted the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2006.


    Ban applauded the global partnership of those who gathered to bring awareness and help bring initiation to World Down Syndrome Day, saying that "let us each do our part to enable children and persons with Down syndrome to participate fully in the development and life of their societies on an equal basis with others. Let us build an inclusive society for all." 


    David was in good company as a great number of self-advocates and professionals spoke during the event.  To watch the entire podcast, click here.


    Quarterly Town Hall Meeting Planned 


    Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action is intent upon creating opportunities for our members to give us feedback in the form of questions, comments or suggestions. Continuing on our "Town Hall" held at the conference each year, DSAIA has planned a conference call to be held quarterly for our membership.  
    The call is scheduled for Tuesday, April 24, 2012 at 7 pm Eastern (6p Central/5p Mountain/4p Pacific). The meeting will begin with a quick report of DSAIA activities and then move into audience participation.  DSAIA encourages our affiliates to have at least one individual in attendance at each meeting and come prepared with comments or questions.  Register today!



    Repository Hits the 1,000 Item Mark 


    successDSAIA's Education & Training Committee set a goal in late 2011 to work toward housing 1,000 items in the Repository by the end of 2012.  Now, the committee will have to revise their goal as the Repository just passed the 1,100 mark!   The latest items to be added to the Repository include employee/program evaluation tools, marketing samples and supporting documents from the 2012 DSAIA Leadership Conference.

    The Repository recently underwent a facelift in order to help members access all folders/documents directly from the DSAIA website.  One other small change that you will notice is the continued sub-categorization of each topic folder. The Education & Training Committee still needs your help.  Take a moment to send in your documents for inclusion.  In high demand are program ideas, newsletter articles and even pictures!  (Remember that all submissions of articles and pictures will require permission by author/subject.)  Send your submissions to 
  • Thu, March 08, 2012 3:48 PM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    DS Leaders Converge on Washington 


    DC 2012 Logo
    Leaders from across the nation arrived in Washington, D.C. last week to attend the Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action Leadership Conference and the National Down Syndrome Society's (NDSS) Buddy Walk on Washington. After spending Thursday, March 1st visiting legislators on Capitol Hill, 225 individuals spent time learning, sharing and networking to improve their service capacity to their membership at the annual conference.  


    Highlighted by a much-anticipated opening plenary session

    dr bev
    Dr. Browning addresses attendees during Opening Plenary.

    by Dr. Bev Browning, author of Grantwriting for Dummies, the conference brought rave reviews.  "It was such a great feeling to know that my Board member (who paid for herself) was going to have a great time and that it would be worth her time and money," said Nancy Litteken, Club 21 Learning & Resource Center.  "And it was! She loved it.  All the members of the committee were warm and helpful and communicated how much every member was valued and an important part of a larger community."


    While attendees will take their information home to their organizations to process and implement, the DSAIA Conference Committee will begin preparations for February 21-24, 2013 in Cincinnati, Ohio.  Save the date on your calendar now!


    DSAIA Members Receive New Grantwriting Resource


    ecivis logo 

    Today, nonprofits struggle to secure increasingly competitive

    and hard-to-find grants. With fewer resources and growing demands, nonprofits have had to be resourceful on all grant seeking fronts. Last week during her plenary presentation, Dr. Bev Browning announced DSAIA's newest VIP Program: subscriptions to Nonprofit One-Stop by eCivis for ALL members as a no-cost benefit of membership.  
    Nonprofit One-Stop by eCivis provides top-quality research and training to nonprofit organizations from top grant professionals. Nonprofit One-Stop isn't just an electronic catalog of funder and grant profiles. It's a professional research team providing you with analysis of what a nonprofit organization needs to survive, thrive, and win! Through this DSAIA VIP Offer, you receive nearly $6,500 in value at no cost to your organization! Let One-Stop open the door to your group's sustainability by taking advantage of this incredible offer.  To find out more about the program, click here.  If you are a member of DSAIA and have not received your invitation email, please contact us today.

    21 Quotes in 21 Days 



    DSAIA is proud to promote World Down Syndrome Day through the "21 Quotes in 21 Days by People with Trisomy 21." The campaign utilizes email and social media to spread a great awareness message.  Special thanks goes to Gail Williamson of Down Syndrome Arts and Media( for coordinating the campaign this year for DSAIA.  To submit a quote for consideration, contact Gail at today.  If you are not receiving the daily emails, please subscribe to our mailing list today.  Be sure to share these with your membership via Facebook share or Twitter. 


    Back By Popular Demand:  Great VIP Savings! 


    Bobux Baby Shoes Offer 


    bobux online jpg

    Thinking about marketing your walk to new parents with a Baby Bootie Promotion?  Or perhaps you're looking for an extra item to place in your Welcome Baby Package?  Back by popular demand, he DSAIA/Bobux Baby Bootie Offer pairs a great product with an attractive price. 


    DSAIA members can take advantage of this quality product with great savings!  Regularly priced at $30 per pair, your organization can purchase Bobux shoes for only $14.25 per pair.  You'll save over 50%!  And some discontinued styles will be available for even less!  Prices do not include shipping. Offer valid until December 31, 2012.


    To view a video detailing a great "baby shoes" promotion aimed at increasing your walk revenue and new parent attendance, click here.



    Band of Angels Package 


    band of angels

    Save $30 when you purchase a Band of Angels customizedsupport package as a DSAIA member!  Receive the award-winning Common Threads soft cover book,My Baby Can! 18 Month Developmental Calendar(boy or girl cover), Inspirational DVD, Hi, I'm Benchildren's book, and both a large and small 'Halo with a Twist' pin!  The total retail value of this package is $65.

  • Tue, February 07, 2012 12:27 PM | Deanna Tharpe (Administrator)

    Mile High Hires Self-Advocate


    MHDSA 30 yr logoMile High DSA recently hired its first employee with Down syndrome. "After 30 years of service to the community and specifically programs that promote the inclusion, independence, and empowerment of those living with Down syndrome, we felt it was important for MHDSA to practice what we preach," said Mac Macsovits, MHDSA Executive Director. "We expect others in the community to hire, train, and employ those with Down syndrome, yet we were not doing that ourselves. The time had come to make this right."


    An eight-month process included planning for long-term funding of the position and a vigorous hiring process including interviews by staff. Macsovits explained that an offer was made based on the needs of the organization, not the needs of the candidate. "This is a staff member," he said, "not a person with Down syndrome. This staffer has real responsibilities and is expected to perform.


    For those groups considering adding an individual with Down syndrome to their staff, Macsovits offers this advice:


    1) It can be a very difficult decision when you have multiple qualified candidates. Be prepared to make that decision.

    2) You MUST have a specific job description with requirements. This is not a feel good position; you are paying someone to do a job.

    3) Make sure that the parents understand this is not a "bring your parents to work" environment. The person must get to work themselves and complete their work themselves. Mommy & Daddy are not included in that other than possible transportation.

    Does your organization have a self-advocate on staff? Tell us about it!

    Learn From the Pros at DSAIA 2012

    DSAIA is pleased to bring two profssional speakers to DC to present at the Friday and Saturday plenary sessions. Dr. Bev Browning, bestselling author, will present at the Opening Session on Friday morning. Her presentation entitled "Building Your Organizational Capacity as an Affiliate: Why It's So Important To Be Aggressive" will certainly start the conference off with a bang.

    PamelaGrowPhotoSaturday morning's plenary speaker will be Pamela Grow, owner of Grow Consulting. Author, coach, copywriter and nonprofit marketing consultant, Grow segued from nearly seven years of working in programming and communications into the world of fundraising. She is the founder of #smNPchat on Twitter - the only Twitter chat geared specifically to the small nonprofit development shop - and she co-hosts Small Shop (a regular column of Fundraising Success Magazine). Her presentation is entitled "Doing It All and Doing It Well: Are You Focusing on What Matters?"

    View the rest of the conference schedule on our Online Community site. Click here to register for the conference today!

    Streamline Your Online Walk Registration While Saving Money


    EZ Event Solutions: Tailor-Made For Your Walk


    ezeventEZ Event Solutions has been providing Online Fundraising Site services for the last four years and is proud to offer these services to DSAIA members at a 10% discount. The EZ Event Solutions fee structure is based on a percentage of an event's Usage Amount (UA) and no setup fee which makes this offer even more valuable.


    Their online system was built specifically to provide the services for events that require team pages and team fundraising efforts. Several Down syndrome groups across the country are utilizing their software with great success. EZ Event Solutions offers their services to DSAIA members to help your organization's event be a success.


    Download the EZ Event Solutions flyer to take advantage of this incredible offer. To find out more about other VIP Programs, visit our website today.

    Board Development Series Continues


    DSAIA's latest workshop series continues in February with Board Orientation, presented by Katherine Campbell. This webinar will focus on how to prepare your newly-recruited board members for their role as engaged leaders and supporters for your organization. We will explore the full range of information that should be covered in orientation, as well as creative options for format, timing, and who might be involved. Implications for long-term retention and accountability will also be discussed. The webinar will include a one-hour presentation followed by 30 minutes of Q & A and is scheduled for Tuesday, February 21st at 8 pm Eastern.


    This month's presenter, Katherine Campbell, is the Executive Director at Council for Certification in Volunteer Administration and owner of Skye Consulting. She is currently serving as adjunct faculty at Virginia Commonwealth University and University of Virginia where she designs and teaches courses in the Nonprofit Management Certification Program. She specializes in assisting public and private nonprofit organization in accomplishing their mission through effective management of people and resources.


    Four webinars will follow including:

    • Fundraising with Your Board
    • What Is the Role of Your Board?
    • Shared Responsibility & Accountability
    • Strategic Planning with Your Board

    Encourage your entire board to register for this incredible opportunity! It's not too late to register. Those registering for the series will be given an opportunity to view previous webinars in the series (which will not be available online until June). A Certificate of Completion will be given to attendees at the conclusion of the series. To see a complete listing of the dates/times, visit the DSAIA website.

I want to tell you what WONDERFUL time I had at the conference. I learned so much and came away with lots of ideas for our organization. -Barb Waddle, The Upside of Downs of Northeast Ohio


Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action started as a conference bringing together outstanding leadership from Down syndrome organizations around the country. Learn More

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Down Syndrome Affiliates in Action
1335 34th St NE
Paris, TX  75462



Monday - Friday
8 am - 5 pm Central

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