Thursday, April 28, 2011

Autism Awareness Month

Welcome All to Autism and Scouting!
I have a few quick things to take care of before we get into the main topic tonight. 

First, I have a new e-mail if anybody would like to write directly to me.  My new e-mail is autismandscouting@gmail.com. To be honest with you, I had this e-mail for awhile but I am just now starting to use it again. If you write to me, I will get back to you. Or if you leave a message here in the comments section or on Facebook at Autism and Scouting, I will get back to you. 

Second, I wanted to share a link that showed up on Facebook today under Boy Scouts of America about a Scout, who for his Eagle Project put together and coordinated the disAbilities Awareness Fair this past weekend in his home state. This scout has Down Syndrome and is part of Troop 164 in Martinsburg, WV. Great job to Joe Fairbanks and to Troop 164 who is supporting him. This is a great example of taking a different ability and turning it into a positive. 

Photo is from the The Journal 
in Martinsburg, WV

It was a nice follow-up to yesterday's Blog and to see how this scout has made a difference. 

Third, to all of our friends in the southern part of the US, you are in our hearts and prayers tonight after all of the destruction that has taken place because of the tornadoes. If you have been affected, we are so sorry and we will keep on sending prayers your way. 

Now on to the topic: Autism Awareness Month
As many of you know, April is the National Autism Awareness month for the US and April, 2nd is World Autism Awareness Day.  Now that the month is almost over, being aware and trying to learn more doesn’t mean that the awareness should stop because the month comes to a close.  

Many times I have seen that people are all excited at the start of Autism Awareness Month but as the month goes on the the enthusiasm wanes until the following year comes around when they get caught back up in the media hype. To be fair, I see this same thing with other causes as well.  It is understandable since we all have to deal with the issues that surround our kiddos’ challenges on a daily basis.  The day to day events many times dictate in which way our lives have to focus.  

Autism Awareness is also different to each and that should be respected.  Autism Awareness Month does give us a chance to stop and think what we can do to help bring the topic to those who might not understand the road less traveled we are all on together. It allows us to come together as a community and celebrate our wonderful children and all of the greatness of their neuro-diversity. 

We can celebrate them in the scouting world by the challenges they conquer and the obstacles that they can vault over.  It is not just about making the next rank or completing the next Merit Badge but when they can go to a campout and can cook a meal or tie a knot or make it through a meeting without having sensory issues. 

This has been a wonderful month for Autism and Scouting on Facebook.  We started the month with about 15 members and currently have 52. I started the year hoping to have a membership of 200 by the end of 2011 but I think we can do much better than that. With your help we can spread the message and get more leaders, parents and scouts signed up so we can share information to better provide all a better experience.   

My son and I have Camporee this weekend so this will be my last blog here for the month and I wanted to again thank all for visiting this blog and supporting it by coming here and to all of the new friends I have made via Facebook and Autism and Scouting. I know by sharing information, there is a learning opportunity for all and that will keep Autism Awareness alive and well all year round.

Support our Scouts
 J getting his First Class Rank in March 2011

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