Music therapy in Hiawatha helps those with Down syndrome

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HIAWATHA, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) A new program in eastern Iowa is using music to help those with Down syndrome.

According to the CDC, Down syndrome affects about one out of every 700 babies in the U.S.

It varies from person to person but will come with disabilities and developmental delays.

The Hawkeye Area Down Syndrome Association host music therapy classes called Do Re Mi at the Hiawatha Library.

These classes use music to help those with down syndrome communicate and express themselves.

Jill Reese is on the board of the Hawkeye Area Down Syndrome Association and after seeing how her daughter responded to music, she decided to help start Do Re Mi.

Her two-year-old Charlotte Reese or “Charlie” was born with down syndrome.

“Music has been instrumental in helping with her speech, that seems to be the biggest difficulty with we have with Charlie right now is her speech and she really comes alive when we incorporate the ABC song and the wheels on the bus and different music like that," says Reese.

Those who come to the session work with a music therapist.

Several studies say music improves motor skills in children with down syndrome helping them to sit and walk.

The organization says it's also useful in helping those with down syndrome be more social and memorize facts and information.

On Saturday, August 19, 2017, they'll be having their third session from 9:30 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

It's a free music class for all ages with Down syndrome and their family.

And on September 24, 2017, the Hawkeye Area Down Syndrome Association will be having their Step Up for Down Syndrome Walk, for more information you can click HERE