The world is truly a remarkable and fascinating place. The advent of technology has ushered in a plethora of possibilities. With a mere smartphone, you could access anything in any corner of the world at any time.
Innovations have given birth to better agricultural practices, global ascension, and advanced technological inventions. Sadly, this world is still far from being the paradise it is meant to be. We face large problems spawned by mankind himself. We are constantly at war, we rage, we embezzle, we continuously poison our air, land and water bodies with industrial wastes. Of course, we are also corrupt, greedy and apathetic.
Asides from the man-made problems, the world also suffers from a series of natural disasters like earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunami, tornadoes and a plethora of diseases.We see newborn babies suffering from Leukemia. We see memories of old men and women gradually fade as they succumb to Alzheimer’s. We see young children unable to communicate with others due to Autism.
What Is Autism?
Autism is a condition, like so many others, that the world so often neglects. Termed Autism Spectrum Disorder, it is a range of conditions which are characterized by difficulty in communicating with others, repetitive behaviors, as well as speech impairment. It is a lifelong developmental disability.
To an autistic person, the world is different. Imagine being an artist, who dwells in colors and portraits, but you are trapped in a world devoid of even the most basic colors to convey your creativity. That is how an autistic person feels.
He/ She finds it difficult to commune his/her emotions and state of mind to the people around them.
Few people in the world are aware of this condition. However, it is shocking to know that in the United States of America alone, one in forty-two boys and one in eighty-nine girls suffer from Autism. There are around seven hundred thousand people in the United Kingdom living with Autism.
Anyone can be prone to this condition, whatever your gender, nationality, cultural and religious background. However, it appears to be more common in men than women. Yet, the cause of this condition is still unknown. Researchers have speculated that it is caused as a result of genetic and environmental factors.
Autism is not caused by a person’s upbringing or their social circumstances. It is not the fault of the individual with the condition. There is no known cure for Autism. However, Autism Speaks, one of the biggest organizations that advocates about the Autism condition, are sponsoring research, enlightening the populace and producing advocates for autistic people.
Creating Autism Awareness
Despite the fact that a lot of people suffer from Autism, it is quite alarming that most people are still unaware of the condition. Some autistic people find themselves shunned, ridiculed and ostracized by the society. On the issue of Autism, most people are not properly educated and informed. How then do we raise such awareness?
It is up to every individual to raise awareness for Autism, and to enlighten the society in order to prevent discrimination. Some of the methods to increase the awareness are listed below:
- Self-awareness: The first and essential step in creating awareness about Autism is self-education. Using a mobile phone or computer, you have access to any information. Educate yourself properly. There are a lot of free online courses like Autism 101 that will increase your overall knowledge of Autism.
- Join Associations – Now armed with the knowledge of Autism, you could take a step further by joining Autism Society. You can decide to participate in races to raise awareness and money for support. You can also make donations to autistic-friendly organizations.
- Social media platforms – You could also use the internet to your advantage by getting involved on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter where information can easily be obtained and exchanged. You could start your own fan page about Autism. Let your page be motivational, informative and educative.
Most people might find it difficult to spread awareness, believing their efforts might not have enough impact. However, we should remember that small drops of water make a mighty ocean! So don’t hesitate and join the train. We can all hold hands to make the world a better place for everyone, including autistic individuals.