This guest post is by Autism Speaks staffer Kerry Magro. Kerry, an adult who has autism, is a recent graduate of Seton Hall University. He started the club Student Disability Awareness on campus to help spread awareness and raise funds for those affected by autism. Autism Speaks U is a program designed for college students who host awareness, advocacy and fundraising events, while supporting their local autism communities.
Almost a month ago I had the opportunity to speak at an Autism Awareness Event co-sponsored by the Mayor of Jersey City, Jeremiah Healy, the Jersey City Council and the Jersey City Public Schools. I was honored as the keynote speaker of the event to talk about my experience with autism. I also received a proclamation from Jersey City, which is the second largest city in New Jersey and my hometown for my work on the subject.
While this was a wonderful honor, the best part of the event was the relationships I made with the parents who approached me afterwards. At the end of the day, this is the reason why I speak. To network but also to help consult for individuals with loved ones on the spectrum. In our community, we can only go as far as we are willing to help one another. There’s so much we have learned on the subject but there’s still a long way to go. Communication between all parties can never be excluded from the conversation. As I said in my speech that day, “Early Intervention is the Key,” however, communication is a close second.
Below you can find the video of my speech at that event. In it I share “My Voice” on the subject of autism and what it truly means to me. Feel free to comment below.