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April 2, 2017 AT 12:30 am

World Autism Awareness Day 2017 #WorldAutismAwarenessDay

Adafruit Autism Awareness blog

We’d like to thank Noelle from our kitting department for putting this information together to help promote autism awareness in honor of Autism Awareness Month and World Autism Awareness Day.


Happy Autism Awareness Day. For those who may not know, April is Autism Awareness Month. Every year for the past 9 years Autism awareness groups and advocacy groups have celebrated Autism Awareness through organized events like walks and fundraising events.

Who would have thought that a routine wellness check for my son and a talk with his pediatrician would lead to an Autism diagnosis for my then 1 year old son. It was the diagnosis from a psychologist that ultimately got the ball rolling on me and my family’s Autism journey. Hearing the words, “Julio has Autism” and seeing it on paper from the final findings made it all the more real and pushed me to learn more and share my own journey and experience to help others and to also educate people.

One things is for sure, we are lucky to live in a world run by technology where we can get so much information and so many helpful resources. Where the internet can connect you to people that you can build a community and support system with. Where you can share information and experiences and not feel alone. Additionally, I am lucky to have a job that encourages homelife amongst its employees and that “out of work” life that allows me to attend workshops at my sons school and be involved in his therapy and services. That is community. That is support.

Autism is not as “un-common” as I thought it was three years ago. One thing I have learned is no one’s disability defines them because they are so much more than any bow we try to put them in. But what will define us is how we treat people with disabilities. How we fight for them, and include them and accept them and respect them.

“Autism is not a puzzle, nor a disease. Autism is a challenge, but certainly not a devastating one.”
-Trisha Van Berkel (Autism Parenting Magazine)

What is Autism

From the CDC:

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disability that can cause significant social, communication and behavioral challenges. There is often nothing about how people with ASD look that sets them apart from other people, but people with ASD may communicate, interact, behave, and learn in ways that are different from most other people. The learning, thinking, and problem-solving abilities of people with ASD can range from gifted to severely challenged. Some people with ASD need a lot of help in their daily lives; others need less.

A diagnosis of ASD now includes several conditions that used to be diagnosed separately: autistic disorder, pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS), and Asperger syndrome. These conditions are now all called autism spectrum disorder.

Read more from the CDC.

Ways to Get Involved

  • Walks – Get involved in local walks in your community. Two great sites to check out are Kennedy Krieger Institute and Eventbrite. In addition to walks, they list great fundraising and networking events. Also, you can be a boss and organize your own events and walks on Eventbrite.
  • Volunteer – YAI has great listings for volunteering opportunities and ways to get involved.
  • Advocate – Just like raising awareness is crucial to services and acceptance for people with Autism, advocacy is crucial to empowering people with Autism and maintaining the delivery of services and support for families. Here’s some advocacy info from Autism Society.

Resources

Websites

  • Friendship Circle is a great site to check out for different events and resources. But best of all there is this amazing blog that accompanies the site written for parents and educators of special needs children by parents and educators of special needs children. They have tips, advice, events, support and community.
  • The Autism Project is another great site for resources, support groups, training, social skill groups, safety resources, summer camps, training and more. Check it out!

Personal Book Recommendation

Apps for Children with Autism

Ongoing Events

Representation and Diversity


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