The recently released Miniland Dolls Down syndrome range has already won its first accolade after being awarded best toy of the year 2020 by the Spanish Association of Toy Manufacturers.
The jury selected the collection from among 81 different toys and 24 toy brands and the win coincides with Down Syndrome Awareness Month.
After a year that has been full of challenges, it’s nice to be recognised for something you are passionate about.
The initiative for the Down syndrome dolls came from Axis Toys co-founder Paula Opfer. Axis Toys is the Australian and New Zealand Distributor of Miniland Dolls and has been the driver behind the success of the brand here.
“Diversity and inclusion is at the heart of Miniland and inclusion means not only embracing different ethnicities and cultures from all over the world, but also embracing those with different needs,” Opfer explains.
“I couldn’t be prouder of this new line and have been thrilled that they have already found a home here in Australia and New Zealand, not only with families with kids who have Down syndrome but also with all families where diversity is respected and celebrated.”
The dolls are designed and made in Spain and are incredibly popular the world over. The current line-up in Australia includes a Caucasian baby boy and an African baby girl with Down syndrome, and a Caucasian baby girl and African baby boy with Down syndrome will be added mid-December.
In line with its multicultural characteristics and to further the conversation around diversity and acceptance, there are also plans for an Aboriginal Miniland Doll early next year.
“We are enormously looking forward to introducing her to Australian families everywhere. The idea is to collaborate with Aboriginal designers and artists to help create dolls clothes as well. We are really passionate about this project as we feel that all children have the right to play with dolls that look like them,” adds Opfer.