April is Autism Awareness Month | AspenTimes.com

April is Autism Awareness Month

April is Autism Awareness Month, and we at Ascendigo Autism Services are committed to helping spread awareness and encourage greater acceptance in our community for those living with autism.

Why devote an entire month to raise awareness about autism? The simple answer is that many causes warrant special attention. Whether it is Black History Month (February), National Safety Month (June), or Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October), these events create a unique opportunity to shine a bright light on a specific subject that otherwise might not get the attention it deserves from the general population. The latest statistics show that 1 in 68 children are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

Since 2007, the United Nations has declared April 2 World Autism Awareness Day, also known as WAAD, which is a big deal since only four other health conditions have official world days (AIDS, cancer, diabetes and Down syndrome). WAAD has helped make autism a global issue resulting in millions of people recognizing the importance of identifying autism early and providing support and treatment for those who are impacted by it.

We at Ascendigo Autism Services want a world that understands what autism is, what can be done to make living with autism better and easier, and how important it is for individuals with autism to live a life with dignity, purpose and respect. We feel fortunate that our participants and programs are welcomed and supported by our community. Several local businesses have welcomed and employed our participants. Other Roaring Fork Valley nonprofits collaborate with us. Many businesses and individuals donate their goods, services, and financial resources to support our efforts to help provide opportunities for growth and independence for children and adults on the autism spectrum.

So, in recognition of Autism Awareness Month, Ascendigo gives thanks to the community for providing a welcoming and supportive environment. We have only just begun. To learn more about autism and Ascendigo Autism Services, please visit ascendigo.org.

Happy Autism Awareness Month!

Peter Bell

President and CEO, Ascendigo