Autism Awareness Around The World

In conjunction with World Autism Awareness Day coming up in just over a month, we decided to share with you, what's been happening around the world related to autism awareness, from public safety officials getting trained on how to interact with individuals with autism, to events such as sales being held in schools, universities and local communities.

In the United States, a local corn crib market will be holding an Autism Awareness Day and benefit this weekend. A percentage of the sales on that day will be donated to two autism-support organizations. The idea of this event originated from a father, Bill Davis, who has a son, Chris, with autism. In fact, Bill Davis and his son were recently featured in an inspirational video, bringing hope to all parents of children with autism. This event includes Davis himself along with some volunteers providing information on autism, musical entertainment as well as some entertainment for children.

Somewhere in Texas, public safety officials underwent a training on the 23rd of February on how to better interact with individuals with autism. Dennis Debbaudt, a law enforcement trainer, mentioned that time should be invested when coming in contact with an individual with autism. The training was held by Bebo's Angels, a local nonprofit group that aims to raise awareness about autism.

Students in a small town called Chaska in the United States have set up an organization called The Wired Project dedicated to build awareness and acceptance and understanding about autism. Launched in January, the name of the organization was inspired by the idea that autism should not be seen as negative because the children are just wired differently. The Wired Project is raising money through the sales of t-shirts and stickers online, to benefit a nonprofit called the Global Autism Project, that deals with autism while trying to shed a positive light on the subject.

In South Africa, the Department of Social Development has made it a national priority to develop the rights of children with autism. Their aim is to remove the stigma of autism and create an autistic friendly society. Collaborating with Autism South Africa, it aims to blot out the lack of knowledge on autism among South Africans, creating a more open-minded society. In an effort to do so, they have opened a school where parents can enrol their children with autism and implemented empowerment programmes for parents as well as care-givers of children with autism.

Closer to home, in Singapore, an agency called SG Enable, dedicated to helping the disabled in terms of employability, held an event on February 26 to discuss best practices when it comes to hiring these individuals. The agency has partnered with the Autism Resource Centre (ARC) among other organizations and have succeeded in providing over 650 persons with disabilities with jobs. All in all, SG Enable strives to create a greater awareness of the potential of individuals with disability, including autism, and to provide a more inclusive workplace for all.

Isn't that exciting? Stay tuned to find out what we at EAP Malaysia are doing in conjunction with World Autism Awareness Day this year!

Reference:
  1. Dexter, P. (2016, February 25). Chaska students create organization to spread autism awareness. Chaska Herald. Retrieved from http://www.swnewsmedia.com/chaska_herald/news/education/chaska-students-create-organization-to-spread-autism-awareness/article_d0d687be-1fa1-522f-befc-4adcb6a72d71.html
  2. Kan, L. (2016, February 26). Striving for a more inclusive workplace. The Business Times. Retrieved from http://www.businesstimes.com.sg/hub/inclusive-business-forum/striving-for-a-more-inclusive-workplace
  3. Landau, H. (2016, February 24). Autism Awareness event Sunday at Mount Joy market. Lancaster Online. Retrieved from http://lancasteronline.com/news/community/autism-awareness-event-sunday-at-mount-joy-market/article_9d3fe6de-db45-11e5-ac14-871e096ece23.html
  4. Mejia, I. (2016, February 25). Public safety officials meet for autism first responders training. CBS 4. Retrieved from http://valleycentral.com/news/local/public-safety-officials-meet-for-autism-first-responders-training
  5. Thusi, L. (2016, February 25). Know more about autism. Southern Courier. Retrieved from http://southerncourier.co.za/89946/know-more-about-autism/