Buddy Walk raises down syndrome awareness

October 6, 2015


The Down Syndrome Coalition of El Paso (DSCEP) in partnership with El Paso Community College held the sixth annual Buddy Walk on Oct. 3 at the Valle Verde campus.



Photos by Mario Ulloa/ Tejano Tribune

Team Emiliano showing their support at the Buddy Walk for Down syndrome.


The walk raised funds for EPCC scholarships for students with disabilities and the National Down Syndrome Society. 

“We were very fortunate because the weather was wonderful and it turned out beautifully.” DSCEP board member, Rosemary Neill said. “Valle Verde is a well-known campus, a true gem in the lower valley. It’s becoming a tradition and we are excited about the organization and opportunity to create more resources for children with Down syndrome.”

The three-quarter of a mile walk circled the campus. After the walk there were refreshments for sale, prizes and entertainment, including local jazz musicians, Billy Townes and Ruben Gutierrez. Local businesses and non-profit organizations also offered information to attendees. 

“We had a lot of entertainment,” Neill said. “A rock climbing wall, music, face painting, along with Tejano Jack and cheerleaders. It went very well and people seemed very receptive.”

The El Paso Community Foundation is a supportive organization committed to creating advocacy, education and awareness for Down syndrome. 



Photos by Mario Ulloa/ Tejano Tribune

Team Eloise being led by Carmen Garcia

(pink lei) and Martha Rojas (green lei).



“We are working very diligently to dissolve new models to breach into education for children with Down syndrome. We think that through our efforts and our partnerships we’ll be able to develop a model program that will be very similar to very forward looking programs. We have the opportunity to create a better environment for children and make this program a true gem for our community,” Neill said. 

The educational model is being used to ensure that children have the best educational setup in order for them to succeed academically to the best of their abilities. The goal of the organization is to build support for children, their families and community members. 

According to Neill, the event exceeded their goal since there were more registrations and sponsors involved.

“We haven’t gotten the final tally but we could tell that our numbers were really going strong,” Neill said, “We had registrations that were equal to a little bit above $18,000 and they were still coming in with on-site registrations. 

We exceeded all our expectations," added Neill. "In terms of participation and we felt like we really did better than we have done in the past.”


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