title

The Lucky Few

Heather Avis, Mercedes Lara, and Micha Boyett

4
Followers
36
Plays
The Lucky Few
The Lucky Few

The Lucky Few

Heather Avis, Mercedes Lara, and Micha Boyett

4
Followers
36
Plays
OVERVIEWEPISODESYOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Details

About Us

Hey friends! Welcome to the Lucky Few Podcast where we are shifting the narrative by shouting the worth of people with Down syndrome. With your hosts, Heather Avis, Micha Boyett, and Mercedes Lara. Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/theluckyfewpod/support

Latest Episodes

Episode 45: Adoption & Down Syndrome w/Stephanie Thompson from the NDSAN

“My doctor told me that my baby would have Down Syndrome and then they brought up termination, so I came home and googled Down Syndrome and adoption and you were the first thing that came up..” the beginning of countless conversations Stephanie Thompson shares with expectant parents. A mother of a 27-year-old son with Down Syndrome herself, Stephanie has walked through those scary stages of the diagnosis process and now walks other parents through this journey. Knowing the uncertainty that accompanies most diagnoses, and the desire of many to parent a child with Down Syndrome, Stephanie created the National Down Syndrome Adoption Network. The NDSAN provides support, education, and counseling to parents expecting a baby with Down Syndrome. Most importantly, they provide options, including adoption. Mercedes and her family are among the many who have connected to their child through the NDSAN’s free services. Thanks to Stephanie’s counseling and guidance 6 years ago, Mercedes and ...

31 MIN4 d ago
Comments
Episode 45: Adoption & Down Syndrome w/Stephanie Thompson from the NDSAN

Episode 44 - Shifting the Diagnosis Narrative w/Carissa Carroll from Jack's Basket

Last month, we went to DSDN’s Rockin’ Mom Retreat in Nashville, Tennessee and partied with over 700 moms who have kiddos with Down Syndrome. And we even sat down to interview a few.. including Carissa Carroll, the founder and president of Jack’s Basket! This mother of three children (one of whom rocks an extra chromosome!) learned the hard way that a Down Syndrome diagnosis is not often met with a “Congratulations!” And so, she took matters into her own hands and created Jack’s Basket, a nonprofit organization that hand delivers complimentary gift baskets to families with a new DS diagnosis. Not only has Carissa changed the diagnosis experience for over 1,700 families in 11 different countries, she has developed educational resources for the medical professionals delivering the diagnosis. We cannot wait to tell you more about Carissa and her extraordinary efforts to shout the worth of babies with Down Syndrome. Join us throughout October as we celebrate Down Syndrome Awareness...

30 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Episode 44 - Shifting the Diagnosis Narrative w/Carissa Carroll from Jack's Basket

Episode 43 - Back to School & All Things Best Buddies w/Val Schlieder & Allison Covell

We’re all hoping for great friends for our kiddos, right? And as parents of kids with Down Syndrome, we might be hoping for those great friends even more than most. That’s why we are so excited to talk to you all about Best Buddies, an international non-profit organization that focuses on creating meaningful, one on one, friendships between students with and without different abilities. Here today to tell us all about the program and share their amazing friendship story is (our co-producer) Val Schlieder & her sister, Allison Covell. Starting out as high schoolers in the program and then eventually going on to co-launch their own college group, both ladies have been involved with Best Buddies for nearly 10 years! This set of sisters credits Best Buddies for introducing them to the Down Syndrome community and their best friend/sister, Linzey! Because of what they learned about inclusive friendships, they’re now strong advocates in the differently-abled world, both online and off! ...

55 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Episode 43 - Back to School & All Things Best Buddies w/Val Schlieder & Allison Covell

Episode 42 - More Than A Handbag: An Interview w/Shivam Punjya

The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) gave his family hope when his sister was born, and now he’s giving it right back. Friends, meet Shivam Punjya, the founder of Behno and the brother of Nini, his younger sister with Down Syndrome. Although his beautiful NYC brand of ethically designed handbags started out with goals to increase sustainability and support workers in India, Shivam’s most recent outreach efforts include a cause that’s pretty close to our own hearts.. The Nini Collection! That’s right, he made fashionable, quality handbags accessible to his sister, Nini, and anyone else who might benefit from a rounded zipper and bigger storage space! We love functional fashion, but we love Behno’s collaboration with NDSS even more! That’s because 20% of every purchase of a ‘Nini’ tote goes straight to NDSS. Check out this extraordinary partnership and join us for an interview with it’s creator, Shivam! We’re chatting about all things related to having a sibling with Do...

44 MIN3 w ago
Comments
Episode 42 - More Than A Handbag: An Interview w/Shivam Punjya

Episode 41 - Back to School & All Things Teaching, Learning, & Growing!

Another week back to school and we feel all kinds of grateful for the amazing teachers in our lives who literally make learning happen for our kiddos every single day. Teachers, we’re here to say that we see you, we love you, and we appreciate you! That’s why today we’re answering questions from you dear listeners about how teachers can modify their classrooms, advocate for all of their students, and become lifelong learners in the process! Because let’s face it, we ALL have some learning to do, we ALL have some listening to do, and we ALL have some believing-the-best-in-every-student to do! It’s time to partner with teachers to counter a system that is not in place to support our kiddos with different abilities so we can watch our kids (and their peers!) grow! So friends, join us for a chat about some of the most important adults in our kids' lives, all the ways you can partner with your child’s teacher, and what Heather wishes she knew when she was an educator. Oh, and we ma...

39 MINSEP 16
Comments
Episode 41 - Back to School & All Things Teaching, Learning, & Growing!

Episode 40 - Back to School: All Things Education, Inclusion, and Down Syndrome

Anyone else feel overwhelmed and under-qualified when the back to school season begins?! We know we do! But here’s the thing: when it comes to your child’s education, YOU DO YOU. If you doing you means homeschooling, great! If it means a fully inclusive general education setting, great! If it means a special education class setting, great! This week we’re here to say that we are cheering for you and your child with Down Syndrome at school, at home, and in every space you occupy. Because when it comes down to it, choosing the “perfect” (if there is such a thing) classroom for your child with Down Syndrome depends on so much more than meets the eye. We get it, family dynamics shift. School districts have limited options. Working parents need to have their kids in school full time. Accessing the resources to advocate for full inclusion is challenging. Most education systems are not built for kids with different abilities. The list goes on, friends. Long story short, we’re all doi...

47 MINSEP 9
Comments
Episode 40 - Back to School: All Things Education, Inclusion, and Down Syndrome

Episode 39 - Back to School w/IEP Experts Vickie Brett & Amanda Selogie

It’s official friends, we are back to school.. and we are taking you all with us! First things first, let’s talk IEPs with the founders of The Inclusive Education Project: Amanda Selogie and Vickie Brett. These two bright and beautiful lawyers use their extensive knowledge of education law and their passion for people with different abilities to educate families on special education rights and connect them with pro bono legal aid. And fortunately for us, they’re sharing their top IEP tips and strategies today! They encourage all of you parents to follow up (in writing) about post-IEP-meeting tasks, provide clear expectations, and create (reasonable) deadlines for everyone on your child’s team. And remember, if something in the classroom is happening differently for your child than all the other students, it needs to be on the IEP. There is truly no better way to kick off our September Back to School series than with Amanda, Vickie, and their nonprofit - The Inclusive Education P...

67 MINSEP 2
Comments
Episode 39 - Back to School w/IEP Experts Vickie Brett & Amanda Selogie

Episode 38 - Remembering Jimbo

This week on The Lucky Few Podcast, we are remembering James Eugene Lanto, better known as Jimbo, and even better known as Jimbo_Is_The_Man on Instagram. Oh friends, where do we begin? How do we honor such a valued life and such an important part of this community? You see, for many of us in the online Down Syndrome world, Jimbo’s Instagram account was the first glimpse of what an adult life could look like for our little ones with extra chromosomes. Jimbo’s spirit seen through those little squares on our phones gave us immense hope and great joy for our child’s future. And for those of us who have other children without Down Syndrome, the loving action of Jimbo’s sisters erased our fears that our children’s siblings might one day grow bitter or resentful against their brother or sister with Down Syndrome. In the eyes of Jimbo’s sisters (and all of his 10 other siblings), Jimbo was more than enough just as he was, never a burden, and always a blessing. So friends, you know tha...

63 MINAUG 26
Comments
Episode 38 - Remembering Jimbo

Episode 37 - Redefining the Down Syndrome Diagnosis w/Meg Wilkes & Stephanie Meredith

Do you want to help us shift the Down Syndrome narrative in a super practical and very simple way? Then this is the episode for you! We talk a lot about how doctors deliver a Down Syndrome diagnosis on this podcast, but we've never discussed doctors and diagnoses and DS with actual medical researchers! Meg Wilkes and Stephanie Meredith are literally shifting the diagnosis narrative through their research. Meg is pursuing a masters degree in genetic counseling at the University of South Carolina and her thesis is on: ‘Redefining the Essential Informational Needs of Parents Receiving a Diagnosis of Down Syndrome.’ Stephanie is the medical outreach director at the University of Kentucky who is overseeing Meg’s research, and her 19-year-old son has Down Syndrome! Thankfully, this dynamic medical duo knows that a newborn with DS has a lot more than health issues and doctors appointments ahead of them, and that’s why they’ve created a survey for all of you! Parents of children with D...

54 MINAUG 19
Comments
Episode 37 - Redefining the Down Syndrome Diagnosis w/Meg Wilkes & Stephanie Meredith

Episode 36 - A Tough Conversation About Sexual Abuse In The Down Syndrome Community

“This is a complicated issue, but I truly believe that the Down Syndrome community is powerful enough to tackle this,” Lindsey Strickland on sexual abuse against children with Down Syndrome. We are so grateful to have our wise friend, Lindsey here to engage in this important conversation and empower us all to make a change. We know sexual abuse is tough to talk about, but our kids are #WorthTheConversation. Thankfully, today’s guest is well-versed in this conversation. Lindsey has spent many years working for Child Protective Services as a case manager for at-risk families, and she also grew up with foster siblings who had experienced abuse. After working as a child advocate in a sexual assault clinic, she began to educate her community about the realities of child sexual abuse. Her extensive background, heart for outreach, and 6 year-old-son with Down Syndrome all lead her to create Worth The Conversation. Lindsey’s online platform serves to empower parents to protect their chi...

81 MINAUG 12
Comments
Episode 36 - A Tough Conversation About Sexual Abuse In The Down Syndrome Community

Latest Episodes

Episode 45: Adoption & Down Syndrome w/Stephanie Thompson from the NDSAN

“My doctor told me that my baby would have Down Syndrome and then they brought up termination, so I came home and googled Down Syndrome and adoption and you were the first thing that came up..” the beginning of countless conversations Stephanie Thompson shares with expectant parents. A mother of a 27-year-old son with Down Syndrome herself, Stephanie has walked through those scary stages of the diagnosis process and now walks other parents through this journey. Knowing the uncertainty that accompanies most diagnoses, and the desire of many to parent a child with Down Syndrome, Stephanie created the National Down Syndrome Adoption Network. The NDSAN provides support, education, and counseling to parents expecting a baby with Down Syndrome. Most importantly, they provide options, including adoption. Mercedes and her family are among the many who have connected to their child through the NDSAN’s free services. Thanks to Stephanie’s counseling and guidance 6 years ago, Mercedes and ...

31 MIN4 d ago
Comments
Episode 45: Adoption & Down Syndrome w/Stephanie Thompson from the NDSAN

Episode 44 - Shifting the Diagnosis Narrative w/Carissa Carroll from Jack's Basket

Last month, we went to DSDN’s Rockin’ Mom Retreat in Nashville, Tennessee and partied with over 700 moms who have kiddos with Down Syndrome. And we even sat down to interview a few.. including Carissa Carroll, the founder and president of Jack’s Basket! This mother of three children (one of whom rocks an extra chromosome!) learned the hard way that a Down Syndrome diagnosis is not often met with a “Congratulations!” And so, she took matters into her own hands and created Jack’s Basket, a nonprofit organization that hand delivers complimentary gift baskets to families with a new DS diagnosis. Not only has Carissa changed the diagnosis experience for over 1,700 families in 11 different countries, she has developed educational resources for the medical professionals delivering the diagnosis. We cannot wait to tell you more about Carissa and her extraordinary efforts to shout the worth of babies with Down Syndrome. Join us throughout October as we celebrate Down Syndrome Awareness...

30 MIN1 w ago
Comments
Episode 44 - Shifting the Diagnosis Narrative w/Carissa Carroll from Jack's Basket

Episode 43 - Back to School & All Things Best Buddies w/Val Schlieder & Allison Covell

We’re all hoping for great friends for our kiddos, right? And as parents of kids with Down Syndrome, we might be hoping for those great friends even more than most. That’s why we are so excited to talk to you all about Best Buddies, an international non-profit organization that focuses on creating meaningful, one on one, friendships between students with and without different abilities. Here today to tell us all about the program and share their amazing friendship story is (our co-producer) Val Schlieder & her sister, Allison Covell. Starting out as high schoolers in the program and then eventually going on to co-launch their own college group, both ladies have been involved with Best Buddies for nearly 10 years! This set of sisters credits Best Buddies for introducing them to the Down Syndrome community and their best friend/sister, Linzey! Because of what they learned about inclusive friendships, they’re now strong advocates in the differently-abled world, both online and off! ...

55 MIN2 w ago
Comments
Episode 43 - Back to School & All Things Best Buddies w/Val Schlieder & Allison Covell

Episode 42 - More Than A Handbag: An Interview w/Shivam Punjya

The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) gave his family hope when his sister was born, and now he’s giving it right back. Friends, meet Shivam Punjya, the founder of Behno and the brother of Nini, his younger sister with Down Syndrome. Although his beautiful NYC brand of ethically designed handbags started out with goals to increase sustainability and support workers in India, Shivam’s most recent outreach efforts include a cause that’s pretty close to our own hearts.. The Nini Collection! That’s right, he made fashionable, quality handbags accessible to his sister, Nini, and anyone else who might benefit from a rounded zipper and bigger storage space! We love functional fashion, but we love Behno’s collaboration with NDSS even more! That’s because 20% of every purchase of a ‘Nini’ tote goes straight to NDSS. Check out this extraordinary partnership and join us for an interview with it’s creator, Shivam! We’re chatting about all things related to having a sibling with Do...

44 MIN3 w ago
Comments
Episode 42 - More Than A Handbag: An Interview w/Shivam Punjya

Episode 41 - Back to School & All Things Teaching, Learning, & Growing!

Another week back to school and we feel all kinds of grateful for the amazing teachers in our lives who literally make learning happen for our kiddos every single day. Teachers, we’re here to say that we see you, we love you, and we appreciate you! That’s why today we’re answering questions from you dear listeners about how teachers can modify their classrooms, advocate for all of their students, and become lifelong learners in the process! Because let’s face it, we ALL have some learning to do, we ALL have some listening to do, and we ALL have some believing-the-best-in-every-student to do! It’s time to partner with teachers to counter a system that is not in place to support our kiddos with different abilities so we can watch our kids (and their peers!) grow! So friends, join us for a chat about some of the most important adults in our kids' lives, all the ways you can partner with your child’s teacher, and what Heather wishes she knew when she was an educator. Oh, and we ma...

39 MINSEP 16
Comments
Episode 41 - Back to School & All Things Teaching, Learning, & Growing!

Episode 40 - Back to School: All Things Education, Inclusion, and Down Syndrome

Anyone else feel overwhelmed and under-qualified when the back to school season begins?! We know we do! But here’s the thing: when it comes to your child’s education, YOU DO YOU. If you doing you means homeschooling, great! If it means a fully inclusive general education setting, great! If it means a special education class setting, great! This week we’re here to say that we are cheering for you and your child with Down Syndrome at school, at home, and in every space you occupy. Because when it comes down to it, choosing the “perfect” (if there is such a thing) classroom for your child with Down Syndrome depends on so much more than meets the eye. We get it, family dynamics shift. School districts have limited options. Working parents need to have their kids in school full time. Accessing the resources to advocate for full inclusion is challenging. Most education systems are not built for kids with different abilities. The list goes on, friends. Long story short, we’re all doi...

47 MINSEP 9
Comments
Episode 40 - Back to School: All Things Education, Inclusion, and Down Syndrome

Episode 39 - Back to School w/IEP Experts Vickie Brett & Amanda Selogie

It’s official friends, we are back to school.. and we are taking you all with us! First things first, let’s talk IEPs with the founders of The Inclusive Education Project: Amanda Selogie and Vickie Brett. These two bright and beautiful lawyers use their extensive knowledge of education law and their passion for people with different abilities to educate families on special education rights and connect them with pro bono legal aid. And fortunately for us, they’re sharing their top IEP tips and strategies today! They encourage all of you parents to follow up (in writing) about post-IEP-meeting tasks, provide clear expectations, and create (reasonable) deadlines for everyone on your child’s team. And remember, if something in the classroom is happening differently for your child than all the other students, it needs to be on the IEP. There is truly no better way to kick off our September Back to School series than with Amanda, Vickie, and their nonprofit - The Inclusive Education P...

67 MINSEP 2
Comments
Episode 39 - Back to School w/IEP Experts Vickie Brett & Amanda Selogie

Episode 38 - Remembering Jimbo

This week on The Lucky Few Podcast, we are remembering James Eugene Lanto, better known as Jimbo, and even better known as Jimbo_Is_The_Man on Instagram. Oh friends, where do we begin? How do we honor such a valued life and such an important part of this community? You see, for many of us in the online Down Syndrome world, Jimbo’s Instagram account was the first glimpse of what an adult life could look like for our little ones with extra chromosomes. Jimbo’s spirit seen through those little squares on our phones gave us immense hope and great joy for our child’s future. And for those of us who have other children without Down Syndrome, the loving action of Jimbo’s sisters erased our fears that our children’s siblings might one day grow bitter or resentful against their brother or sister with Down Syndrome. In the eyes of Jimbo’s sisters (and all of his 10 other siblings), Jimbo was more than enough just as he was, never a burden, and always a blessing. So friends, you know tha...

63 MINAUG 26
Comments
Episode 38 - Remembering Jimbo

Episode 37 - Redefining the Down Syndrome Diagnosis w/Meg Wilkes & Stephanie Meredith

Do you want to help us shift the Down Syndrome narrative in a super practical and very simple way? Then this is the episode for you! We talk a lot about how doctors deliver a Down Syndrome diagnosis on this podcast, but we've never discussed doctors and diagnoses and DS with actual medical researchers! Meg Wilkes and Stephanie Meredith are literally shifting the diagnosis narrative through their research. Meg is pursuing a masters degree in genetic counseling at the University of South Carolina and her thesis is on: ‘Redefining the Essential Informational Needs of Parents Receiving a Diagnosis of Down Syndrome.’ Stephanie is the medical outreach director at the University of Kentucky who is overseeing Meg’s research, and her 19-year-old son has Down Syndrome! Thankfully, this dynamic medical duo knows that a newborn with DS has a lot more than health issues and doctors appointments ahead of them, and that’s why they’ve created a survey for all of you! Parents of children with D...

54 MINAUG 19
Comments
Episode 37 - Redefining the Down Syndrome Diagnosis w/Meg Wilkes & Stephanie Meredith

Episode 36 - A Tough Conversation About Sexual Abuse In The Down Syndrome Community

“This is a complicated issue, but I truly believe that the Down Syndrome community is powerful enough to tackle this,” Lindsey Strickland on sexual abuse against children with Down Syndrome. We are so grateful to have our wise friend, Lindsey here to engage in this important conversation and empower us all to make a change. We know sexual abuse is tough to talk about, but our kids are #WorthTheConversation. Thankfully, today’s guest is well-versed in this conversation. Lindsey has spent many years working for Child Protective Services as a case manager for at-risk families, and she also grew up with foster siblings who had experienced abuse. After working as a child advocate in a sexual assault clinic, she began to educate her community about the realities of child sexual abuse. Her extensive background, heart for outreach, and 6 year-old-son with Down Syndrome all lead her to create Worth The Conversation. Lindsey’s online platform serves to empower parents to protect their chi...

81 MINAUG 12
Comments
Episode 36 - A Tough Conversation About Sexual Abuse In The Down Syndrome Community