World Autism Awareness Day
The 2nd of April is World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD). People with Autism and those living with autism face many hurdles every day. As a society, with a little thought and a few simple changes, we can reduce these barriers to make our world more accessible. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lifelong disorder. It requires parents, the community, and society as a whole to make individuals with ASD feel that they matter.
Although the term “autism” could be heard frequently, most people are not fully aware of what autism really is. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder marked by impaired social interaction, limited communication, behavioral challenges, and a limited range of activities and interests. Individuals with ASD can show a wide variety of behavioral symptoms, from failure to develop appropriate peer relationships to a delay in or a total lack of spoken language. Autism continues to be more prevalent in boys than in girls.
Autism Awareness Day gives us a chance to have a better understanding of the world around us and our community. Landmarks around the world will shine blue lights on 2nd April in recognition of people with autism and those who love and support them. Organizations large and small will host events to raise awareness of the growing public health issue of autism spectrum disorders. Autism-friendly events and educational activities take place all month, aiming to increase understanding and acceptance of people with autism, foster worldwide support, and inspire a kinder, more inclusive world.
The UN General Assembly unanimously declared April 2nd as World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) at the beginning of 2008 and we’ve been celebrating it ever since. April set as Autism Awareness Month, is a 30-day celebration of autism taking place throughout April, continuing the positivity and interest created each year by the events of World Autism Awareness Day on April 2nd. More people need to know that autism is not something to be cured but merely a different way of being. To be honest, accurate representation is not something that happens for us often. That needs to change.
Greater awareness could result in earlier diagnoses, and researchers are currently studying ways of identifying higher risks of developing autism even in infants. The earlier risk of autism can be identified, the earlier that intensive interventions can make a positive impact on the child’s development.
We are hoping you might be willing to participate in a couple of small efforts to help raise the attention of the observance and the need to help improve understanding of what autism is (and isn’t), help improve the quality of life of those with autism, and to help tackle the stigmatization and discrimination associated with neurological differences at home and abroad.
Ideas to celebrate and support WAAD:
World Autism Awareness Day is April 2nd. Here are some ways that you can show support for individuals, families, parents, teachers, and the many others whose lives are touched by autism.
This year, as COVID-19 continues to impact our daily lives, Autism Awareness Day looks different. While our traditional celebrations may be canceled or postponed, it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t celebrate this important day. To give your family some ways to commemorate Autism Awareness Day, we’ve put together a few ways you can celebrate while practicing social distancing and CDC recommendations.
Light up Blue –
Wear blue on 2 April in recognition of WAAD — or wear your favorite autism awareness shirt.
Don’t have one? There are many places online for you to order one including the Autism Speaks online store, Amazon, and WorkPlacePro.
Change your porch light to a blue lightbulb leading up to (and on) the day.
Share information online –
Share with your networks information on World Autism Awareness Day with hashtag #KindnessCounts #LightItUpBlue #WorldAutismDay #WorldAutismMonth.
Attend events –
Organizations that support people with ASD tend to host fundraisers and walks. Attending or volunteering at these types of events is a good way to show your support and help raise awareness in your community.
Include them –
Simply including people with ASD in your everyday activities can make a big impact and help raise awareness.
Donate at autismspeaks.org