How one brave baby inspired a community of empowered parents

How one brave baby inspired a community of empowered parents

This playgroup is changing the lives of babies with Down Syndrome.

down syndrome beautiful news
Supplied, Beautiful News

It takes courage to be a parent. Joy Cronje’s son was diagnosed with Down Syndrome at nine weeks old. A flurry of health complications ensued, from heart defects to epilepsy and sleep apnea. “As the months have gone past, it’s become more intense,” Cronje says. Her child, Brave, is now a year old. While Cronje has had support throughout the toughest moments, many caregivers in similar circumstances don’t have anyone to turn to. 

In 2019, Cronje created the Brave Play and Support Group for parents of children with Down Syndrome. The genetic abnormality affects people in various ways, increasing their risk of respiratory infections, hearing and vision loss, and even leukaemia. Scores of trips to the hospital and constantly worrying about their kid’s health can be a taxing and isolating experience. But because of Cronje, parents in Centurion now have a place to connect and share information and guidance. “This group is changing lives for the better by giving them a space where they can talk,” Cronje says. 
With early assistance, parents can work through medical and social challenges and enhance each toddler’s upbringing. “I want people to feel positive about their child’s diagnosis,” Cronje says. In facilitating a supportive community, she’s leading resilient parents, and ultimately, empowered kids.

You can support Brave on his medical journey here.

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