" The GVDSS does not recommend or support various therapies, therapists, doctors, practitioners, etc. The only Board-approved partnership is with the Victoria Conservatory of Music for the Music therapy program. The GVDSS' mission is to be a support system for one another. It is left to individuals and families to determine the best services, therapies, doctors, and therapists for their particular needs and that fit their personal philosophies.
Info & Resources

Info & Resources


Canadian Down Syndrome Society

Down Syndrome Research Foundation (DSRF) Empowers people with Down syndrome to achieve their potential, lead independent and fulfilled lives, and participate fully in the communities in which they live.


Supports for Inclusion and Integration

Contact us at to be connected with other families who have used or tried to use these services for information and experience.


FINANCIAL INFORMATION - See our financial resource page for information on tax, investment and grant opportunities for families supporting persons with Down Syndrome.


Awards, Scholarships, and Funding Sources

Canadian Down Syndrome Society Awards

Eric Cyr Memorial Scholarship, awarded to support families to attend conferences.

BCACL Individual Leadership Opportunities Scholarship Program

Is your child eligible for the AT HOME PROGRAM? Contact us at or 479-7450 to be connected with GVDSS families about their experiences and suggestions for qualifying. The At Home Program (AHP) is intended to assist parents with additional costs of caring for a child with disabilities. The At Home Program provides assistance to families with Respite Benefits and/or Medical Benefits.

BC Provincial Park camping fees will be waived (there are other benefits too!) if you show the following documents to the Park Facility Operator at the park you are camping in:

  1. If you are designated a "Person with Disabilities" you must show your signed Release of Information Form issued by the BC Ministry of Employment and Income Assistance AND a second piece of ID.
  2. If you have a child registered through the "At Home Program" you must show a current Letter of Eligibility from your caseworker, stating your child is eligible for the "At Home Program" issued by the BC Ministry of Children and Family Development AND a second piece of ID.
  3. If you are receiving disability benefits from a First Nation Administering Authority you must show your signed Release of Information form issued by a First Nation Administering Authority AND a second piece of ID.

Implementing SRV: Post-secondary Education as a Pathway to Socially Valued Roles. This is an article discussing how socially valued roles can be attained through post-secondary education.

Augmentative and Alternate Communication (AAC) Services in British Columbia

Down Syndrome Research Online Advocacy Group. A non- profit scientific and educational effort aimed at increasing public understanding and support for scientific and medical research into Down syndrome.

National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) The mission of the NDSS is to benefit people with Down syndrome and their families through national leadership in education, research and advocacy

Community Options For Children and Families (COCF) a welcoming, innovative organization that supports children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families. They in partnership with other organizations, individuals and government to ensure the inclusion of all people in our community.

Community Living Victoria (CLV) supports people with developmental disabilities together with their families and support networks by promoting their full citizenship and inclusion in the community. As the largest non-profit community living service provider on Vancouver Island, Community Living Victoria provides a range of support services to children and adults with developmental disabilities and their families.

Community Living BC (CLBC) delivers support and services to people with developmental disabilities, children with special needs and their families in British Columbia. It has a board of self-advocates, family and community members, as well as staff located throughout the province. We believe that people with developmental disabilities and their families know best when it comes to their needs, goals and planning for the future.

The BC Association for Community Living (BCACL)is a federation that advocates for children, youth and adults with developmental disabilities and their families to ensure justice, rights and opportunities in all areas of their lives.

Victoria Society for Children with Autism promotes awareness of autism, provides support and information to families, supports the development of alternative living and vocational situations for autistic persons and supports research in the field of autism.

Autism Community Training (ACT) is a a province-wide information and referral service created to support families of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. We offer families and professionals a wide range of positive and practical information on everything from sleep problems and diet, to core issues such as diagnosis and aspects of intervention, including information on setting up programs for their children. Need support and information? Call us at 604.205.5467 / 1.866.939.5188 or email! GREAT Training Opportunities here that support families and professionals with various diagnoses!!

STEPS-Forward Inclusive Post-Secondary Education Society (STEPS or IPSE) Inclusive College or University option for Adults with an intellectual disability. Any prospective student (age 19+) wishing to can apply to the service. Prior academic performance or IQ/Functional assessment is not a criterion for selection.

Social Role Valorization (SRV) is a high-level service and relationship theory based on empirical knowledge for the design and rendering of both formal and informal services and relationships to any kind of people with any kind of need or condition, but especially those who are devalued or at risk thereof.

Disability is Natural. The mission of this site is to encourage new ways of thinking about disability and to help create a society in which all people are valued and included.

Parent Network for Parents of Children with Special Needs. Valuable weekly newsletter that includes Vancouver Island Families.

The Family Support Institute's mission is: "To strengthen and support families faced with the extraordinary circumstances that come with having a family member who has a disability".

CanAssist, formerly known as the University of Victoria Assistive Technology Team (UVATT), is dedicated to developing technology, devices and services that improve the quality of life of those with special needs. Our goal is to harness and marshal the extraordinary resources on campus and in the wider community to achieve this end.We are passionate in our belief that those with special needs be given every opportunity to participate in, and contribute to society.

Arts In Therapy Education & Counselling (ARTEC) is dedicated to providing professional therapy and counselling to adults, youth and children as well as Organizational Health and Wellness Services to non-profit societies and business organizations and their employees.

Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network (PLAN) s mission is to help families secure the future for their relative with a disability and to provide you with peace of mind. This means ending isolation and loneliness, creating financial security, enabling everyone to make a contribution, ensuring choice, and creating genuine homes.

The mission of Family Focus is to enhance family strengths and resources through direct family involvement that preserves the dignity of all families within their community.

The BC Association for Community Living (BCACL) is a provincial association dedicated to promoting the participation of people with developmental disabilities in all aspects of community life. We also support activities dedicated to building inclusive communities that value the diverse abilities of all people.


Rick Scott, Canadian Children's Entertainer An award winning singer, songwriter and actor who combines music and laughter in lively, participatory concerts for all ages.

Kinderspirit Creations creates parent-friendly, kid-friendly, earth-friendly reusable Training Pants for little and big kids. Potty Praiser is Proudly Made in Canada.

Mini-Miracles produce special clothing for special children increasing the sense of ease for families and the comfort of children. The clothing is designed specifically to promote dignity and independence for children with special needs.

Super Duper Publications Fun Educational Material Creative, colorful educational materials that you and your children will love.

Wee-Knees Design Inc. The ultimate knee protection for infants and toddlers! Wee-Knees are baby friendly, providing protection without being bulky or restrictive. The flexible Neoprene pad gently cushions teeny knees, while the Soft-Touch Spandex sleeve fits snugly and comfortably around the leg.

Pam Marshalla Speech Therapy. Pam is recording all her lecture material in one-hour segments for self study and small group meetings.

Victoria Conservatory of Music, Music Therapy. As children enter the music therapy clinic at the Victoria Conservatory of Music, they are often drawn to the music coming from the music therapy room. With guidance from the music therapist, the children enjoy taking part in a variety of musical experiences.

Zajac Ranch for Children
hosts hundreds of children with chronic illnesses or disabilities who might not otherwise have a chance to enjoy a summer camp experience.

Little Steps Therapy Services (speech therapy)


The GVDSS does not necessarily endorse or promote any of the following services, businesses, philosophies, or websites. The GVDSS accepts no responsibility for information provided by or action taken by the owners of these sites.


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