This episode is taking us on the road—to Tanzania. My guest is Hayley Balozi, who’s raising her two sons with her husband in East Africa. Hayley’s youngest son, River, is determined and adventurous and happens to have Down syndrome.
Our conversation will take us not only into the heart of raising a child with Down syndrome, but into the world of disability in a country that doesn’t even have a word for Down syndrome in Swahili, its official language. Hayley describes the challenges to get medical care, the painful stigmas that have kept some with Down syndrome hidden away for their entire lives, and the public school system. But, more than that, we’ll get a glimpse into a family and a place that has offered River the chance to live freely and enjoy life. And a country that is changing, with one family like River’s at a time showing that Down syndrome is nothing to be down about.
Hayley Balozi is an artist, entrepreneur, and mother. You can find her blog, her advice for new parents of babies with Down syndrome, and her photo gallery on her website. You can also follow along with the Balozi family’s journey on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.