In the last few decades, the world has advocated for the promotion of awareness towards Autism.
Neurodiversity is quickly becoming more common throughout the global population. In the 1990s, 1 in every 150 children were diagnosed as Autistic. Today, one in every 78 children is Autistic. The prognosis for children with autism vary from child to child. For many, they will need lifelong assistance and therapy to achieve basic milestones and functions. Others, who may be high functioning, may flourish throughout life with early intervention and an effective and strong support system. Some common therapy done with autism students include occupational therapy, speech therapy, behavioral therapy, psychotherapy. Regardless, Autism Awareness is beneficial for everyone.
Spreading autism awareness may serve a plethora of purposes. For starters, many non-profit organizations which support children on the spectrum add raising autism awareness as a tool for gaining financial contributions which may positively impact children whom they support. On the other hand, autism awareness may also serve useful in advocating for better laws and protection for these children and their families who are said to be vulnerable. In addition and most importantly, due to the stigma and ostracizing that is often faced by this population, autism awareness seeks to inform and educate the general public about the condition and the importance of showing love, support and acceptance towards these children. We cannot stress how important it is for children on the spectrum as well as their families to receive love, acceptance and support in order to help and not hinder their mental, emotional and physical health.
Many businesses which serve the autism community raise awareness by selling merchandise promoting their brand and the need to support this population. One such business is Assistees, an e-commerce store which carries autism awareness branded t-shirts, masks and pins. Raising autism awareness through commerce offers opportunities for networking, developing beneficial personal and professional relationships within the autism community as well as earning a means to gain financial momentum.
Not a business owner but still want to raise autism awareness? Here are some more tips on how you may raise autism awareness no matter what sphere of life you are in.
- Buy merchandise which support and point to the autism community and proudly use them in the company of your friends, family and the general public
- If you are involved in any community groups, suggest to your superiors that the club invites a guest speaker to a meeting one day to speak about the importance of being kind and supportive toward the autism population.
- If you are in the corporate world, suggest to your boss for the company to do something to commemorate World Autism Awareness Day, which is recognized every year on the 2nd of April.
- If you can, post a picture of a quote by recognized autism awareness ambassadors such as Autism Society and MyAutism Team.
- Donate to a charity that supports autism families and students
- Contribute to discussion boards online about autism, even if it means asking more questions about the disability, or even better, share the link to the board on your news feed regularly!
- If you encounter anyone you know for sure is on the spectrum, exemplify the appropriate care, respect and compassion for them.
- Buy an autism bumper sticker and post it on your vehicle
- Teach your children about autism and how to be sensitive to children in their school who may be unique
To conclude, we must say that respect is due for each and every individual no matter their color, creed or abilities. Being a caring, compassionate person is the inner work each and every one of us must do if the world is going to become a more inclusive place. As Autism affects one in 78 children, chances are you have encountered a child on the spectrum at some point. The best cure for any disparity in humanity is to know we are loved and accepted just as we are. Love heals; prejudice or rejection hurts - and this is the fundamental principle of autism awareness.
This article was written by the very talented Elizabeth Dunlop. For more, visit her Fiverr page.