Annual Step Up for Down Syndrome Walk raised more than $13,000

SPOKANE, WA - The fourth annual Step up for Down Syndrome Walk raised more than $13,000 over the weekend.

The one mile walk brought community members from the quad cities to Spokane on Saturday to celebrate Down syndrome. The event benefits Ds Connections Northwest, an organization that offers support and resources to those with down syndrome and their families. President of Ds Connections Northwest Susan Villelli and parent Megan Yen both spoke of the importance of the organization.

"It's nice when your child is born with DS to know you have an organization to go to get support," said Ds Connections Northwest President Susan Villelli. "And to also bring awareness to the fact that our children are a wonderful part of society and can be just like any typical kid."

"We have a three year old that has down syndrome," said Ds Walk Participant Megan Yen. "And so ever since that diagnosis we've realized we are his biggest advocates and spokespeople, so coming together with everyone else in this area has been one of the highlights of the past three years."

The fundraiser is the only event the organization holds each year. The $13,000 raised will benefit all projects and activities for this coming year.

For more information on Ds Connections Northwest, go to