The Down Syndrome Association of Central California (DSACC) formerly known as Fresno Area Down Syndrome Society, aka FADSS, was founded in August of 1999. The organization was founded by five families from the Central Valley who began meeting in June of that year to lay the foundation for the society that we know today. A constitution and set of by laws were formulated at that time using examples from similar successful organizations around the country as their basis. In addition, the governing documents were drafted in conformance with Roberts Rules of Order, latest revision. A mission statement was developed before the charter night by the founders and stands to this day.
The mission of DSACC is to enhance the quality of life for people with Down syndrome and their family members through education, social and support programs. The goal of the society is to provide programs that promote greater awareness of the developmental, educational and social potential of person with Down syndrome on the part of the general public. In particular, these programs will benefit parents and family members of person with Down syndrome and the social science, education and medical professionals who provide services to persons with Down syndrome.
DSACC is a nonprofit 501 (c) 3 corporation established in the State of California in September of 2000. The organization is managed by a Board of Directors consisting of an Executive Board and Members at Large. The fiscal year of DSACC is from January 1st through December 31st. The bookkeeping is managed by the Association treasurer and annual income tax returns are prepared by a licensed and reputable Certified Public Accountant. Currently, DSACC publishes a bi-monthly newsletter titled “The Extra” that is free to anyone who is interested in furthering the mission of the organization.
DSACC is financed through many resources consisting of private donations, grants, fundraising and many in-kind service donations. Currently the programs that we offer include:
Parent packs for families with a new baby with Down syndrome. This information pack includes current health care guidelines, growth and development charts, speech and language development advise, local and national resources for a variety of services as well as a DSACC brochure describing our organization. The pack is supplied free of charge to first contact health care professionals and is intended as a tool for educating parents in this very critical time of need for information. The information is supplied in English and Spanish. Additionally, college and high school level students have been given this pack when they are required to prepare a report about Down syndrome. Funding for this service is provided through a grant by the Central Valley Regional Center.
Holiday and Summer Socials – These events are open to members of DSACC and provide a wonderful opportunity for families to relax in an environment where they know that people will understand them and their loved ones without an explanation. The networking that occurs at these events is invaluable in that parents and caregivers can share and compare resources. Many friendships result because of these gatherings and they are among our most popular activities.
Denise Allshouse, Ryan and Shannon Coats, Bobbi Coulbourne, Leslie and Dennis Bergquist and Carmie Mullen.