When Lucy Weeks was born with Down syndrome in April her parents weren't quite sure how they felt. She was the second child for Daniel and Jenna and a little sister for Hudson, 2. Mr Weeks said they didn't know Lucy had Down syndrome, a genetic chromosome disorder, until after her birth. "It was a pretty big shock and we had mixed emotions," he said. Within 24 hours Mr Weeks reached out to Down Syndrome Victoria (DSV), who sent information and a big hamper of homemade clothes and toys from the Albury-based makers behind The Perfect Gift Australia. Mr Weeks said he unpacked the hamper together with Jenna when she came home from the hospital. "They said they'd send an information pack and we expected an envelope full of brochures," Mr Weeks said. "This big box turned up with toys and teddy bears and clothes. "It was completely unexpected; it really blew us away! "To know somebody cared and wanted to make us feel like it's all OK was invaluable. "It was a big box of love!" The Melbourne-based couple said that gesture was the start of an important relationship with DSV. Mr Weeks said with their extended family living in Tasmania, connections were vital for the young family. "It was really the start of our journey with DSV," he said. "We did the Step Up for Down Syndrome Walk in October ... and overall we smashed the fundraising record. "There's a private Facebook group where we can share information and advice on things like NDIS." With the help of volunteers at Albury-based Hume Retirement Resort and throughout NSW, The Perfect Gift Australia aims to give every family in Victoria welcoming a child born with Down syndrome a beautiful gift, offering congratulations and handmade and heartfelt items. With the support of Down Syndrome Victoria (DSV), 33 families have received a Perfect Gift hamper this year alone. By early next week DSV expects to present its 100th gift to a Victorian family since 2019. Border resident and former midwife Cathy Gibb pitched the idea to DSV about four years ago. She read about Irish woman Sinead Fidgeon who started the project after having her fifth child, a baby girl with Down syndrome. "She didn't get the congratulations she got for her other children," Ms Gibb said. "She set up The Perfect Gift charity in Ireland and I wanted to see if we could do it here. "Down Syndrome Victoria was very eager to make it happen." The Perfect Gift Australia hampers now reach 95 per cent of families of a child with Down syndrome in Victoria. Down Syndrome Victoria chief executive Daniel Payne said The Perfect Gift Australia was a success story. "The experience of getting a gift box is wonderful but it's the love that goes behind it that resonates with families," he said. "It's absolutely heartfelt. "It takes a village to raise a child but here we can see it takes a village to create the perfect gift." Since DVS was founded 45 years ago, Mr Payne said the experience of people with Down syndrome had changed radically. He said their life expectancy had soared from an average of 19 years to mid-60s. "In the space of 45 years, life expectancy of someone with Down syndrome has tripled," Mr Payne said. "That's partly about better access to health services but it's also about the community celebrating these children." Those interested in supporting The Perfect Gift Australia can contact Cathy Gibb through Hume Retirement Resort on (02) 6025 8409.