Hoover, Alabama (September 1, 2015) Most recently, Ashley DeRamus was named Advocate of the Year 2015 by Down Syndrome International. She traveled to India August 7-22, 2015 spending time traveling and visiting with children before accepting her award on the 21st.
While a trip to India is exciting with visits to landmark places such as the Taj Mahal and receiving an international award is thrilling for anyone Ashley and her traveling companions were transformed by their interaction with the citizens of the poorest part of the country.
Ashley and her companions saw the best and the worst India has to offer. From a dying man lying on the side of a road with only a shirt who was saved by her staff and others to the love of a mother whose baby with Down syndrome is sick and needs help.
Ashley stated, “Thank God for blessing me with Down syndrome so that I can be who I am, a Down syndrome advocate so that I can give hope to others. To meet all the wonderful people of India who have touched my heart the children who l came to love so much and my new friends from around the world.”
Ashley was deeply moved by the plight of many in India. The hearts of those with her were touched as well. Her mother Connie DeRamus, Kim Whitlock who is a director of the foundation, Gary Kannegiesser is the executive director of the Ashley DeRamus Foundation and business manager of Ashley by Design as well as Video Journalist, Mick Richards who went to document the trip.