Adult support

Expectations for adults today

Over the past 10 to 20 years the opportunities for adults with Down syndrome to live productive, inclusive and fulfilling lives have become so much greater. Social attitudes, government policies and the efforts of young people and their families in forging new pathways, have assisted in ensuring a brighter future. Due to improvements in medical care, recognition of the benefits of a healthy diet and increased activity, life expectancy for a person with Down syndrome is now an average of 60, and that’s a long time to explore many possibilities.

Independence and choice

Many adults who have Down syndrome are now living more independent lives, in situations of their choosing, with the supports geared to their individual needs. Employment in valued roles; inclusion in sporting activities, clubs, and other recreation; meaningful friendships and relationships, with some choosing to marry, are now goals to strive for. When a person feels valued, has choice, and has opportunities for participation in every day life, their physical and mental health benefits.

Parent’s changing roles

Parents can now prepare their children for a life which is more independent of them and the intense parenting role doesn’t need to be life-long. Of course, all parents continue to care about their children and often have ongoing supportive roles, but they too can expect to have greater freedom to pursue their own interests, without the day to day hands-on caring role. Parents who are able to assist their sons and daughters to settle into a more independent adulthood, often report a greater level of reassurance about the future.

How can we help you

Down Syndrome Victoria's Adult Support Manager is available to discuss individual issues of concern, both from adults who have Down syndrome and their supporters. Through this role and many years of learning and information gathering, they can assist with referral to other services, sharing information to assist people to explore options for improving challenging situations or to find ways to a more fulfilled life. Sometimes in this role it is about listening to concerns and fears; sharing joys and achievements; and affirming a course of action.

The group was specifically created to provide peer support, to share information, to empower families and to create positive expectations. This group is open to parents from Victoria, Australia who have adults with Down syndrome.

Joining the group

Those wanting to be added to this group need to be known to the organisation (families need to have had prior contact with Down Syndrome Victoria).


DSV has also developed resources on a variety of topics such as employment, accommodation,  life beyond school and ageing, and links can be found on the top right of this page along with a link to our information by topic page.


We also provide a number of workshops each year on a variety of topics, both in house for families and young people, and at a fee for service to service providers. For upcoming workshops see our events page or to request tailored training visit our training page.


DSV staff are also connected to an information sharing network, to keep up to date with latest research, opportunities for our members in the community and to keep the service system informed of the issues that are important to people who have Down syndrome and their families.