Autism Spectrum Disorder Awareness
What's all the Hub-Bub About Autism?
Everybody has issues to deal with but sometimes we forget how truly lucky we have it. One of the greatest challenges to understanding another person is to really know what he or she may be dealing with on the home front. In an effort to be more knowledgeable about the causes of the CJ Foundation for Children in Need, I decided to use the topic of autism for my school paper. It was an eye-opener!
During the research phase of my paper, I had the pleasure of talking with people affected by autism. One such person, Cito Beguristain, is a member of the CJ Foundation Board. He described the shock and momentary panic when his daughter’s doctor brusquely announced that he suspected Cito’s daughter of having autism. Cito says he was rather put off by the manner the news was delivered, but also, at a loss for what to do next. The doctor did not give him much to go on and Cito had to figure a lot out for himself through his own research. Then later, it was discovered that his daughter really did NOT have autism, so a lot of pain and effort could have been avoided.
Another great source of information is one of our newest board members, Dr. Jill Kelderman. She was able to help me understand the lack of resources and inconsistent information that parents face when they take their child to their pediatrician. The parents suspect something may be wrong and are looking to the experts for answers and time is of the essence!
“The most effective treatment (for autism) comes from intense early intervention; the earlier the intervention, the better trajectory will be for a more “normal” life for the child. Furthermore, there appears to be a “window of opportunity,” as behavioral therapy is substantially more effective prior to the age of 7. This requires a proper diagnosis, which can be troublesome, depending on the doctor. Not all doctors are well educatedin the early detection of autism, and many physicians take a “wait and see” approach, which costs patients and families valuable time which otherwise could have been spent in interventions,” Dr. Kelderman told me.
Add this to some of the additional facts (directly from my paper):
What the exercise of writing this paper clarified for me is that the work of the CJ Foundation for Children in Need is of vital importance and that the primary focus on autism is a timely choice.
Here are some of the things we are doing now:
One of the interesting points that surfaced for me through this paper was the fact that it was the organizing of parents and parent groups that brought the social problem of autism to the forefront. This new awareness and the continued effort was the catalyst for funding for research, treatment, and other needed services. This fact exemplifies the importance of coming together for a common good.
So I am asking for your help! If you know of anyone or have suggestions as to whom I might contact, please feel free to contact us – And as always, feel free to share. There is a lot of work to do and we can make a greater difference when we band together for a common cause.
In the meantime, if you or anyone you know would like to join a caring community “doing good” for the families in our own area, please feel free to contact me.
- Janus Moncur