It’s April…Autism Awareness Month.
This month has always been the busiest for AAoM, as we would normally be preparing for our annual gala. Like 2020, we decided to move the event to September 11th and while the additional time for planning is welcome, it feels a little strange to not have the opportunity to celebrate in our traditional way. With COVID, few of us are motivated to celebrate anyway.
This pandemic has changed our lives, and those of our families in dramatic ways. We hear every day about the challenges they are facing: remote learning demands competing with work schedules, disrupted and reduced treatment programs, deteriorating behavior and loss of skills. Through the past year of one crisis after another, we have been here for the community. Our navigators stand ready to take calls and guide families to the help they need. As we see our state reopening, our community inclusion efforts become even more important. So, while we aren’t celebrating our amazing families in a formal way, it is still Autism Awareness month and we will continue education efforts, to raise awareness and advocate for inclusion for all now, and every year.
Colleen Allen, Ph.D.
President & CEO, Autism Alliance of Michigan