By Marissa Bailey

CHICAGO (CBS) — October is Down Syndrome Awareness Month, and locally, a parent who’s been championing the cause to educate people on the condition joins CBS 2’s Marissa Bailey.

Jane Winans has made a career out of educating people about Down Syndrome, since learning of her 14-year-old daughter Lydia’s diagnosis ysars ago.

She says her best advice for parents of children with Down Syndrome is, “Don’t base a future on the past. Life of kids with Down Syndrome, adults with Down Syndrome, it is limitless. And Gemiini Systems has a product that allows learning to continue.”

“We were told that Lydia would kind of peak at age 12, and that’s absolutely not true,” Winans said.

The online tool, Gemiini, teaches speech and reading skills to students with special needs.


“All of a sudden, it opened up my eyes. Advanced vocabulary…it has allowed her to increase her reading,” Winans said.

“My future goal was to become a writer, basically. And I’ve always lived my life based on getting on my vocabulary down, because now that I know more words and harder words, I can use those in my writing,” young Lydia said.

The A&E show “Born This Way” shows how living with Down Syndrome

It’s also showing the possiblity and joy, and fulfillment. And again, the posibility is limitless,” Jane Winans said.

For more information on the Gemiini Educational System, visit the company website.