When Jamaican reggae singer Sophia Brown was left seriously injured by a car accident in 2017, she felt lost and discouraged:
“I didn’t really have any real drive to do music anymore. When you lay on your back for a year and then a new year comes, and you are still being withheld from doing what you love because of injuries and doctor’s restrictions; it’s like your psyche took a huge blow.”
After two years, two operations, and countless visits to the doctor, Brown was finally able to resume recording and the other activities that helped her see past her pain and focus on others. But more than anything else, she credits her work with a foundation for those with Down syndrome for renewing her purpose in life.
Inspired by her 15-year-old niece with Down syndrome, Heidi, Sophia had founded a charity called Angel of the Hearts Foundation in 2015 to help improve the lives of those with the genetic condition. Now, revitalizing the work of Angel of the Hearts has helped bring Sophia out of a period of darkness.
Most recently, she partnered with the Jamaica Down’s Syndrome Foundation (JDSF) to provide financial assistance and gifts to those with Down syndrome in her country of origin. JDSF works with over 600 children with Down syndrome and their families, and this contribution directly helped 20 children aged 1-17.
“I am someone who is always looking for ways to give back but with this particular foundation, I wanted to help in any way possible because my lovely niece Heidi Brianna Buchanan has [Down syndrome]. Even though she is well taken care of, there are other individuals who need the extra help and push. So by doing some research, I found [JDSF] and immediately wanted to be a part of it.”
She has been encouraged by the positive reception from the families in Jamaica, who often don’t have access to the same resources and support organizations as families in the U.S.