Celtic celebrate World Down’s Syndrome Day with designated funding for its award-winning Ability Counts project

This Sunday, March 21, marks the 16th Annual World Down’s Syndrome Day and once again Celtic FC Foundation is proud to support this internationally co-ordinated campaign to promote awareness and understanding of people living with Down’s Syndrome.

The campaign calls on individuals to show their support by wearing brightly-coloured odd socks – a nod to human chromosomes resembling socks and people with Down’s Syndrome having an extra chromosome. 

As such, the Foundation is asking Celtic supporters all over the world to raise awareness of World Down’s Syndrome Day by sharing a photo of your odd socks with us, using the #WDSD21 hashtag on social media. 

This year’s international theme is ‘CONNECT’, focusing on improving connections to ensure that all people who have Down’s Syndrome can CONNECT and participate on an equal basis with others.

Celtic FC Foundation supports children, young people and adults living with Down’s Syndrome through our multi-award winning Ability Counts project. A cherished Foundation project, Ability Counts makes a profound and lasting difference to the lives of many individuals and families. 

Today we are also delighted to announce that after having to pause Ability Counts due to the pandemic, we will be restarting our delivery as soon as it is safe to do so in Scotland and Ireland and we are currently working towards that, with the project fully funded again by Celtic FC Foundation.

Initially developed in 2010 alongside experts from Down’s Syndrome Scotland, Ability Counts is founded on a simple model of inclusivity, companionship and most importantly, fun.

Through physical activity, sport and team-based play, our sessions allow participants a sense of freedom, affording them opportunities to express their feelings in a relaxed, comfortable environment.

The project has had brilliant outcomes during a sustained period and everyone at Celtic is delighted to be able to deliver this fantastic programme once again. 

Owen O’Donnell, whose son Alex attends the project said: “Ability Counts has been a big part of Alex’s life over the past 10 years or so. He’s made a lot of new friends, learned football skills and he’s now coaching younger participants in the programme.

“The project is a big part of his routine and he can’t wait to return when it’s safe to do so!”

If you would like more information on Ability Counts or to put your name on the waiting list, please contact[email protected]