We are SANDS
SANDS seeks to inspire, educate and support individuals, families and communities living with Down syndrome throughout Southern Arizona.
SANDS pursues this goal by creating an open, supportive, and collaborative network connecting individuals and families with needed resources and information.
Our mission: To improve and enrich the lives of individuals with Down syndrome and to promote public awareness.
Have any questions? Call us now!
New Parent Services
SANDS strives to provide support to all of the families in Southern Arizona of loved ones with Down syndrome.
Grants & Scholarships
Programs to provide a medium by which SANDS can give back some of the funds it raises directly to individuals with Down syndrome and their families.
SANDS pushes to educate individuals, families, and communities about Down syndrome from preferred language to facts, and various publications.
Local Support Groups
SANDS is committed to providing encouragement and support to families who have family members with Down syndrome through local support groups.
Jonathan “Jay” Rivera
“We would like to thank SANDS for the wonderful opportunity that we were granted to go to the NDSS Buddy Walk on Washington. It was a time spent learning and growing while seeing old friends and making new friends. It was great to learn all about what it takes to advocate and take it to Capitol Hill. This event allowed my son and I to see all of the different people with Down syndrome of all ages and from all over the country. As a parent it was great to be with other parents of children with Down syndrome. My son voted and was thrilled to meet the congresswoman he voted for. It was a first time for him to go to Washington and take in some of the history. We are grateful and look forward to attending more events in the future.”
“When I was 12 weeks pregnant, I learned that the baby I was carrying would be born with Down syndrome. My OB-GYN explained to me what it is and gave me the option to abort. She supported me either way. I knew I would need her support and all the other support I could get, because there was no way I was going to abort the precious life growing inside of me. Around 15 weeks pregnant I met a mom of a son with Down syndrome, who would add many loving people to my and my daughter’s life. She explained to me what SANDS was, and all the support she received from them. I went to my first Tucson Buddy Walk in November on 2016 (while I was still pregnant), and realized that so many people would love and support me, as well as Brielle. On April 16, 2017, Brielle was born, and the next day we had visitors from SANDS-the President and two other members of the board came to celebrate Brielle’s life. It really moved me and helped me know that we are not alone in this journey. Since receiving my prenatal diagnosis, some of the most loving and generous families have stood next to me, supporting both Brielle and me. Brielle and I are proud to be part of the SANDS community.”
“My family and I had a wonderful learning experience at the NDSC conference. My husband and my mother loved the presentations. They usually are not that much involved in the special needs world as I am. This made it a learning and unique experience for them. My two kids without Down syndrome attended the brothers and sisters workshop. They are always pleased to meet other kid’s siblings with Down syndrome and autism. My son with Down syndrome-autism lacks social skills and is aggressive, but he had excellent behavior. He enjoyed the trip and stayed for three days at the kids camp. I personally got new knowledge and met new people. I learned from young ladies with Down syndrome from Chile on how to start a small business run by them. The workshop on boundaries and sexuality was great, too. I feel more ready for the next level. The support given by SANDS is outstanding. This trip was stressful on reaching the financial goal. SANDS gave me a relief and reduced anxiety, and made me feel hopeful on making the dream true. Thank you SANDS for being with us and make this happen.”
“Oh yes, Mateo loves his bike, he feels so prideful when he sees how fast and far he can go on his own, without training wheels, his face tells it all! We feel so grateful to you for allowing Mateo to reach another of his many goals. Thank you.”
“Jesus is a 19–month-old little bundle of joy. He’s a big boy, he weighs 30 pounds, and he doesn’t walk or crawl yet. He was diagnosed with leukemia on December 4th, 2017. Ever since then, he and I have been at Banner Hospital where he has been receiving his chemo therapy treatments. His treatment consists of 6 rounds. At the end of each round we get to go home for 3 to 5 days. On May 10th he started his last chemo treatment. We live in Douglas about 2 hours away from the hospital, making it hard to have our family close by to help me care for him, by holding him while I shower, do laundry, or go heat up food in the parent lounge, etc. The stroller that we received from Give It Back has been my helping hand. It goes everywhere with us. It rides so smoothly, sometimes he sleeps right through laundry travels. Its spacious undercarriage helps me carry our food or any excess baggage I may need to carry. I call it my babysitter, BOB. Thank you for our gift!”
“Mi experiencia fue muy satisfactoria y la convivencia con las 4 familias en el viaje. El congreso me gusto mucho. Me instrui mucho en como ayudar a mi hijo en todas las areas de su vida, como alcanzar muchas metas, objetivos en su vida. Conoci muchas personas de diferentes ciudades y paises. Muchas familias fueron una inspiracion de seguir adelante. Gracias a SANDS por su apoyo economico, fue una motivacion para asistir al Congreso. Fue una yuda total economicamento fue un motivo muy grande. Mil gracias por todo su apoyo, y gracias por su apoyo de todas las familias tambien.”