July 11, 2018
Dear Friend of the Jerome Lejeune Foundation,
Let me tell you the stories of two extraordinary people.
Thierry was born with Down syndrome in 1946, when the cause of Down syndrome was still unknown. Jerome Lejeune discovered Trisomy 21 when Thierry was 12 years old, and Dr. Lejeune began seeing him.
Thierry experienced a happy childhood and is a fulfilled adult: he received an education, lived on his own in Paris as a young man, and learned to expertly draw and paint. He also trained as an endurance swimmer and participated in the Special Olympics! Now at age 72, he lives happily among other retirees.
The Jerome Lejeune Institute in France was founded to carry on the work of Dr. Lejeune. Anne-Solène’s relationship with the Jerome Lejeune Institute started when she was just one month old. “As soon as Anne-Solène was born, we took her to the Jerome Lejeune Institute to receive the care of specialists in trisomy 21”, her mother said.
This “smiling and very sociable” girl with Down syndrome is now four years old and has received regular support from the institute throughout her life. The staff at the institute has identified and treated serious health issues, including sleep apnea and two dislocated hips. Her mother is thankful for the involved care that the institute has given her: “If we had not been to the Lejeune Institute, nobody would have seen that Anne-Solène had a problem.”
The Jerome Lejeune Institute in France has consulted with patients for over 20 years. It’s time to bring this expertise to the United States. We know that life-long support is the best way to care for those with Down syndrome, and we’re eager to get started.
We need your financial assistance now to launch a hospital serving those with Down syndrome. This Northern Virginia medical center already has a clinical team identified, and two geneticists and doctors from the institute in France who will move to the United States to provide training and support.
Where do you come in? We need to secure $600,000 to fund the hospital launch. Once the funds are raised, we will be able to welcome patients within less than six months!
Please consider helping today.
Thank you to Jerome Lejeune Foundation in France for curating these stories!