Taking a closer look at organizations who have helped educate the public about autism

Taking a closer look at organizations who have helped educate the public about autism

Zac Slowik, News Editorial Assistant

As the calendar turns to April, so also does Autism Awareness Month. This year marks the 51st anniversary since the first time autism organizations, such as the Autism Society, began to campaign nationally for the rights of those diagnosed with autism In 1972, the Autism Society launched the first-ever “Autism Acceptance Month,” which sought to raise awareness and share modern research findings related to autism.

Although various grassroots organizations have helped to bring attention to systemic issues facing those diagnosed with autism, more work is still needed in ensuring the well-being of those who currently find themselves on the Autism spectrum.

Each year, the Autism Society comes up with a new theme for Autism Acceptance Month, and this year’s theme is titled “Celebrating Differences.” The theme deals with celebrating the differences possessed by individuals while also embracing and welcoming everyone for who they are, regardless of physical, behavioral or mental impairment. The Autism Society is also one of hundreds of organizations across the country that spread autism awareness and educate the public 365 days a year.

Recently, website organizations like Autism Speaks have been noted for getting up-to-the-date information out about advancements in the field of autism research to the general public. The vast majority of the money donated to Autism Speaks goes toward the research of autism, while other organizations, such as the Autism Alliance of Michigan, distribute donations toward families directly impacted by autism.

Approximately one out of every 54 children in the U.S. today will be diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. With almost 2% of the world (1.85%) having some form of autism, spreading awareness and educating people about the symptoms and conditions of autism is extremely important, and organizations like The National Autism Society, The Autism Alliance of Michigan and many others do exactly this year-round. Just because April is the Month to spread awareness doesn’t mean that the other 11 months should go to waste.