Sandra’s story

Sandra’s story thumbnail.

Sonia here, DSV Family Support Manager. I want to thank those of you who have generously contributed to our pre and postnatal campaign. Over the past few weeks I’ve talked about the vital services and supports we provide to new and expectant parents, as well as Marie’s experience with DSV. But we’re still a long way off our target.

Today I’m sharing Sandra’s story. Sandra tells of the invaluable connections to information, ongoing support and community that her family gained through DSV’s Family Support work. You can support families just like Sandra’s by making a donation today.

We discovered there was a very high chance that Ella (then known as Baby Bud) would have Down syndrome while I was pregnant. There was never any doubt in our minds that our ‘Baby Bud’ would be perfect just the way they were, but our immense love for our baby was accompanied by fear about what it would mean for their health, the life they’d be able to lead, and how they would participate and be included in our broader community.

We reached out to Down Syndrome Victoria searching for information, but we found so much more. Through DSV our world opened up and we were connected to not only information, but a community of support that made my pregnancy and Ella’s first year of life much less lonely and scary. Sonia visited us in our home during those early weeks and connected me with a pregnancy care support group, and a community of Victorian parents, and it made all the difference.

After Ella’s birth we received the most beautiful welcome pack with donated gifts and information, we attended a new parent’s session and received support to prepare for the daunting NDIS process and support navigating childcare arrangements. We were also connected to the Royal Children’s Hospital Trial T21 clinic.

We will forever be grateful for Sonia and DSV’s support. Our fear for Ella’s future has been replaced with hope and a new confidence in our capacity as parents and advocates knowing that we have the support of DSV and an amazing community walking alongside us.

We support many Victorians just like Sandra every week, however the important work we do in the pre and postnatal space is not supported by recurrent funding.

Currently DSV receives no funding for our prenatal services, with limited government support for our postnatal service offering. We rely entirely on the generosity of our donors to ensure delivery of this critical support. 

We’re asking for your support. You can help us assist more new and expectant parents like Sandra.

Help us to continue to provide critical support to new and expectant parents and make a tax deductible donation before 30 June.

Simply click the button below to donate:

If you have any questions at all please don’t hesitate to contact us on 9486 9600 or email


Sonia Bonadio
Family Support Manager
Down Syndrome Victoria