Sujeet (or Suj as he is known) is 28 years old, married, an accomplished musician and is learning to drive. He will also tell you that he has the best teeth in the world as he loves his dentists and sees them often - then when you look amazed he will add that both his parents are dentists!
Amongst his many achievements, Suj can count:
- Playing 6 musical inatruments - Violin, Piano, Clarinet , Bass Clarinet, altosax and Drums
- Second dan black belt in Tae Kwon Do
- Competing in Special Olympics in Alpine Skiing, Swimming and Cross-country training
- Numerous presentations as a self-advocate
- Setting up his own website
In 2003, Suj married Carrie Bergeron, who also has Down's Syndrome and they now have their own apartment mid way between both sets of parents. In keeping with their cultural backgrounds they had a traditional Hindu wedding ceremony followed by a western ceremony a week later. see more wedding photos here
I've met Suj and his parents on several occasions although I've yet to meet Carrie as she tends not to travel with Suj as she has her own timetable of events also advocating for people with learning disabilities. Suj is a quiet young man who obviously enjoys his music and the pleaure that it gives other people. His musical versatility not only encompasses many instruments but also many differnt genre and I have thoroughly enjoyed the oportunity to listen to his performances.
In 2009, National Down Syndrome Society featured a video of Sujeet Desai, The Traveler as part of their Awareness Week Campaign.
A message from Suj:
I was born with DOWN SYNDROME. Therefore I learn things slowly. I have worked very hard for so many years to learn what I love to do to overcome limitations of my disability. I would like to be a musician but my MISSION is more than that. People say that I have been a role model to young children around the world with disabilities, especially those born with Down syndrome either through my web page or music performances and workshops that I do with my mother to share my story.
I like to make my presentations especially at conference like events more than just an entertainment but educational as well as inspirational. So it can be an upbeat on disability issues and continue to bring hopes to individuals with disabilities, their parents, families, educators and services that work with them.
My goal is continue to work to make my MISSION POSSIBLE ! .