The Trisomy 21 Parent Peer Program gives parents, caregivers and siblings of individuals with Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome) the social, emotional and informational support they need by matching them with a Parent Peer, or mentor. Parent Peers are family members who have experience and knowledge about raising a child or caring for an adult with Down syndrome and are willing to share what they have learned with other families.
Research shows that support and practical guidance from experienced caregivers provides valuable assistance to families in dealing with their child’s special needs. Since the need for this type of support does not vanish with age, the Trisomy 21 Parent Peer Program is designed to support Pennsylvania and New Jersey families of individuals with Down syndrome from infancy through adulthood.
Information, resources and support you receive from a Trisomy 21 Parent Peer can help you make the best decisions for your child.
The program is a collaboration between the Trisomy 21 Program at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Parent to Parent of Pennsylvania, and New Jersey Statewide Parent to Parent.
Talking with a parent or caregiver who has walked in your shoes can be a lifeline when you are overwhelmed with caring for an individual with Down syndrome. Whether it’s maneuvering the grocery store or maximizing the educational supports at your child’s school, a Parent Peer mentor can help you through situations you face every day.
Any caregiver — parent, sibling, foster parent, grandparent, guardian, etc. — is eligible to participate.
Get connected to a Parent Peer mentor in your state:
- Pennsylvania: Visit Parent to Parent of Pennsylvania’s Trisomy 21 Parent Peer Program page. You’ll find a program description and an option to “Get Matched.” Complete the form and a regional coordinator will contact you within 48 hours. You may also call 1-888-727-2706.
- New Jersey: Visit the New Jersey Statewide Parent to Parent page for more detail about receiving support in New Jersey. You may also reach out via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 908-537-4673.
Become a Trisomy 21 Parent Peer mentor
We encourage you to become a part of this network of individuals. Please take a moment to consider signing up as a Parent Peer and use your experiences to support another family.
The program needs Parent Peers who have children across the age spectrum — from infancy through adulthood. Our goal is to match families that live near each other and encounter similar situations because of their child’s age or medical conditions due to the diagnosis of Down syndrome.
You are required to take one to two hours of instruction (available online). The training provides formalized preparation in best practices, allowing you to offer the unique one-on-one support only an experienced caregiver can provide.
Become a Trisomy 21 Parent Peer mentor:
Download our Trisomy 21 Parent Peer Program brochure for more information.