Meet an amazing woman and mother striving to make a difference by teaching inclusion and spreading awareness about down syndrome and encouraging parents who also have children with down syndrome to join her in making a difference within the community.
|Joshua with mum, Victoria|
Victoria (aka Chacha) is a mother of two who lives in Manchester, England. Her first son, Joshua is a unique and special boy who was born with down syndrome. At the time he was born in 2008, she knew absolutely nothing about down syndrome and felt like a heavy burden had been placed upon her.
As the years went by, she learned about down syndrome and learned how to care for her son. She became his carer and before time, found herself telling others about down syndrome and encouraging other mothers not to feel weighed down, also to let them know that their children are special and very unique.
There were times Joshua was not invited for birthday parties of children his age simply because the parents did not understand what was wrong with him.
In 2014, Victoria decided to start a charity (though not registered then) whereby she could bring families together; have all children (including parents), irrespective of their uniqueness, and teach them what inclusion is all about. She hopes that one day the world will be a place where children with special needs as well as those with different disabilities would be treated equally, listened to and respected like every other person. Her charity is known as Lovely Heritage Down syndrome. Her purpose is to raise awareness of conditions and factors that lead to down syndrome. To provide help to those with down syndrome, their families as well as their carers. She knows first hand how difficult it can be when caring for these special children and would do anything to ensure they are treated right and equally.
|During one of the LET’S SHARE activities.|
|A day out at Space Centre, Preston with our Let’s Share family|
LHD became registered in 2017 and had her inauguration in June 2018.
|LHD TEAM- June 2018 Inauguration
|Victoria Ibe with Volunteers- June 2018 Inauguration|
|Lord Mayor June Hitchin of the City of Manchester during the LHD inauguration, June 2018.|
|Lord Mayor Hitchin of the City of Manchester with the CEO of LHD, Victoria Ibe.|
In the last four years, she has gone out to spread awareness. She has been on the radio-Beautiful Mind, Vine Juice and also on Premier Gospel Radio and DOZ radio. She was also featured on DOZ magazine and Diaspora Lifestyle magazine and was interviewed by us last year – https://www.isparklenow.com/2017/06/22/joshua-and-vic/
She won the Community Leader Award in 2018 at Milton Keynes. It was awarded by ‘A Well-Woman UK’. She was recently nominated for ‘Role Model and Community Organisation Awards for the UK Premier Diversity Awards.
|Community Leader Award – A Well-Woman UK|
If anyone is interested in supporting this charity or would like to be a volunteer, do not hesitate to get in touch by going to the website: http://www.lovelyheritage.org.uk
Also, if you know anyone living in Manchester with a child with down syndrome or even if you have children who have no disability, please feel free to join in every last Saturday of the month at our monthly activity titled ‘LET’S SHARE’ – St Georges Community Centre. M40 7NY, Manchester.