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Archive for July, 2011

College Students To Host Vintage Clothes Fundraiser for Autism Speaks

July 29, 2011 4 comments

This blog post was written by Alexandra Lewisohn and Maressa Criscito, the co-founders of the Autism Speaks U Chapter at the University of Michigan. Their Autism Speaks U chapter is dedicated to raising awareness and funds on campus and in the community. To get involved in our college program, visit www.autismspeaks.org/U.

On August 1, 2011 from 5-10 PM at 45 East 34th Street, 3rd floor in New York City, The Vintage Twin will be holding a trunk show event, where 10% of all proceeds will be donated to Autism Speaks. The Autism Speaks U Chapter at the University of Michigan is helping to organize this event and invite you to come out, shop and support Autism Speaks!

With a store run by stylists, The Vintage Twin treats shopping as a service and style as yours, allowing people of all colors, ages, and sizes to enjoy one-of-a-kind hand-picked, remodeled, and original designs. In line with its modernized products, The Vintage Twin is a footprint-free and socially responsible company.

Come join The Vintage Twin’s show, buy some fabulous one of a kind items, and help raise funds for Autism Speaks!

For more information about Autism Speaks U at the University of Michigan, visit our Facebook page to keep updated about future fundraising, volunteering, and advocacy events!

Tune in to “Need to Know” on PBS

July 29, 2011 4 comments

Tune in to PBS’s “Need to Know” for a segment on the challenges facing adults with autism and their families, as well as the desperate need for services that will help them live productive and fulfilling lives. The segment will feature an interview with Autism Speaks Executive Vice President for Programs and Services Peter Bell, who discusses the ongoing needs of adults with autism and the call for Congress to renew the vital Combating Autism Act (CAA). Due for reauthorization on September 30, the 2006 CAA represents the federal government’s commitment to support autism research, services and treatment. To learn more, visit www.autismvotes.org.

“Need to Know” will air on the following major PBS stations this weekend. This list is not comprehensive, so please check your local PBS schedule for a date and time near you.

WGBH-TV Boston: Friday, July 29 – 10:00 p.m. EDT

WTTW-TV Chicago: Sunday, July 31 – 9:00 a.m. CDT

KERA-TV Dallas-Fort Worth: Saturday, July 30 – 8:00 p.m. CDT

WNET-TV New York: Friday, July 29 – 8:30 p.m. EDT

WHYY-TV Philadelphia: Friday, July 29 – 9:00 p.m. EDT

KQED-TV San Francisco: Friday, July 29 – 10:00 p.m. PDT

WETA-TV Washington, DC: Friday, July 29 – 10:30 p.m. EDT


Autism in the News – 07.29.11

Row over Flintshire autism unit closure plan (UK)
A psychology professor has accused council officers of presenting inaccurate information to justify closing a unit for autistic children. Read more.

Local author sheds light on adult Asperger’s Syndrome (Sacramento Press)
Martha Schmidtmann Dunne, whose husband Mike Dunne is a local food and wine writer and editor at Sacramento Bee, found that she was also a writer when she began penning a book about her family’s struggle with her youngest son’s Asperger’s Syndrome. Read more.

Showcasing their skills (phillyBurb.com)
These might be the dog days, but there was no hint of the summer doldrums at Benjamin Franklin Freshman Academy in Bristol Township on Thursday morning, as special education students sang, danced and joked their way through an infectiously enthusiastic talent show. Read more.

Autism doctor with clinic in St. Peters under scrutiny (STL Health and Fitness)
An autism doctor who operates clinics in St. Peters and Springfield, Ill., has been suspended in two states for alleged mistreatment of children. Read more.

Penn State autism conference to discuss the challenges of college (University College Park, Penn.)
More students with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) diagnosis are being accepted into college, and while many may have the grades, experts are concerned that some students do not have the appropriate social skills to maneuver through that crucial first year of college. For a teenager with ASD, living away from home and managing school work might be too much to handle without proper training and support. Read more.


Categories: Autism in the News Tags: ,

A Message from Geri on Bangladesh

July 29, 2011 5 comments

Dear all,

I thought you might enjoy seeing a few highlights from Andy Shih and Michael Rosanoff’s recent efforts in Bangladesh. This is a country where resources are very low, and there is a great need to protect the rights and improve the treatment of people with autism.  Yet despite few resources, this country is stepping up to improve services for all people with autism in their country.  Saima Wazed Hossain from Bangladesh remarked at a recent United Nations meeting that, if Bangladesh can tackle the challenges of autism, any country can.  Indeed, it was Bangladesh that co-sponsored the UN conference that brought together leaders from many countries, the WHO, and key White House staff to focus on the needs of people with autism.

Andy and Michael, with the help of several experts from the US, are providing technical assistance and helping galvanize the Bangladesh government and other leaders to improve the lives of people with ASD.  What is noteworthy is that this effort requires very little in terms of money from Autism Speaks but can have a transformational effect on an entire country.

All best,
Geri Dawson, Chief Science Officer

Autism Conference Ends with High Hopes

The landmark autism conference ended in the city yesterday as its chief architect, Saima Wazed Hossain, hoped that the two-day meet would generate new hopes among the families in and outside the country. Read more …

Call for quality healthcare for persons with autism

An international conference on Autism Spectrum Disorders and Development Disabilities in Bangladesh and South Asia adopted the “7-point Dhaka Declaration,” with a call for promoting stronger coordinated actions in the region and globally. Read more …

Autism Meeting Ends with ‘Great Response’

The two-day international conference on autism concluded on Tuesday with pledges from the World Health Organization to support Bangladesh in autism care. Read more …

URGE YOUR U.S. SENATOR TO ATTEND September 7 Committee Meeting on Autism

July 28, 2011 4 comments

In 2006, The Combating Autism Act authorizing nearly $1 Billion was passed into law. Funding allocated and other provisions within that law will come to an end unless the bill is reauthorized before September 30th. Our community has $693 Million of dedicated autism research funding over the next three years at stake. We cannot lose the momentum we have gained since 2006.

If you are represented by one of the 22 U.S. Senators who serves on the HELP committee (see list of Senators here,) we need your help to make sure they attend Wednesday’s meeting.

Again, the committee must act on the bill in order to get it before the full Senate, important steps to getting it cleared by the House and sent to the President’s desk for his signature into law by September 30. Until the committee approves the bill, the full Senate will be unable to act.

Public welcome! Urge your senator to attend by clicking YES on this invite! Please know that if you live in one of the following states: AK, AZ, CO, CT, GA, IA, IL, KS, MD, MN, NC, NM, OR, PA, RI, TN, UT, VT, WA, OR WY – the rest of the autism community across the United States is counting on you.  One, or in the case of North Carolina – both, of your Senators is on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions  (HELP) Committee.

YOU CAN TAKE ACTION HERE TO BE SURE THEY WILL ATTEND AND SUPPORT THE BILL!

RSVP to our Facebook event HERE

Autism in the News- 07.28.11

New mobile app to give people with autism a voice (Ireland)
Lisa Domican has created an app that aims to revolutionise how people with autism communicate with others based on the principle of picture exchange communication. Read more.

Autism conference puts focus on technology (Billings, Mont.)
An autism conference being held in Billings is focusing on how those with autism can use technology to better their lives. Read more.

Fund-raiser at AB&G generates $6,300 for autism programs (Allendale, N.J.)
With the help of friends, family and the Allendale Bar and Grill, 21-year-old Allendale resident Erin Tobin held her autism awareness fund-raiser on July 18 and raised $6,300 to be donated to a school for those living with autism. Read more.

Walk in the Park for Developmental Disabilities Institute A Runaway Success (Smithtown, N.Y.)
Developmental Disabilities Institute (DDI), the largest service provider for children and adults with autism on Long Island, hosted its annual “Walk in the Park” on Sunday, July 24, to promote community support for individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities. DDI is expected to raise approximately $30,000 as the money is still coming in to help fund the vital programs and services DDI provides to over 5,000 families served by their educational and residential programs, adult day training and medical services. Read more.

Moray family’s theatre complaint over autistic son (U.K.)
A family say they have been overwhelmed by support for their autistic son who they claim was asked to leave a theatre because he was making too much noise. Read more.

Categories: Autism in the News Tags: ,

Why I ride. Where I ride. What I ride.

July 28, 2011 4 comments

This is a blog post by Hamid Parvizian. His cousin Cameron has autism.

And here I am again, at the Houston Intercontinental Airport, waiting to board my plane to DC, where I will embark on my second annual ride in the “Bike to the Beach” Century Rides, benefiting Autism Speaks and autism Awareness. Waiting to board my plane, I reflect on my cousin, Cameron. Cameron fights autism everyday. But this bike ride is not just about Cameron. As I watched hundreds of thousands of people pass the many gates, I remembered that one out of every one-hundred and ten persons passing by the gates is affected with autism or will have a child born with autism. We have to find a cure.  There is no compromising. This is why I’m here, boarding this plane, biking this distance.

And as I heard my flight called to board on the airport speakers, I knew I was on my way to making a difference in Cameron’s life and the lives of all families struggling with autism. My will and drive to push through this 108 mile ride pales in comparison to the millions of families trying to raise a child suffering with autism. And that’s when it hit me. My will to train hard and prepare for this ride all year was born from my inspiration – Cameron and all children with autism have inspired me to push myself to higher limits of physical fitness and accomplishment in my life. As a result of their bravery to fight autism everyday of their lives, I simply have no excuse not to demand the most from myself. I am now participating in Bike-to-the-Beach, scheduled to compete for my first Ironman in Florida in November, and then Ironman Texas in May.

Because of Cameron, I am inspired to reach my goal of not only finishing each race, but also achieving a personal record in time. I’ve been inspired before by Cameron, so inspired in fact that I was able to compete in my first half Ironman only months after starting training. I was also the winner of a Cervelo P3 tri-bike from tri-bike transports. My friend Andrew Torres with Torres Chop Shop spent 2 months and donating his time to designing and painting the bike converting into an ‘Autism Awareness Bike.’ I have been overwhelmed by the number of people who have contacted me after seeing the pictures he was posting of the bike in progress. I am excited to be able ride this bike in my upcoming races and hope that it will help continue to raise awareness for autism.

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