Happy Autism Awareness Month, CNMI!

Posted on Mar 30 2023

Cleo Nening

April is Autism Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness about autism spectrum disorder, ASD, and to continue to advocate for the rights of people with disabilities. Autism affects millions of people worldwide, and yet many individuals with ASD continue to face stigma and discrimination. Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects how a person communicates, interacts with others, and processes information. It’s called a spectrum disorder because it affects individuals differently and to varying degrees of severity.

Autism Awareness Month exists to help increase understanding, reduce stigma, promote advocacy, highlight experiences, and encourage early detection and intervention for individuals with autism. By working together to raise awareness, we can create a more inclusive and supportive society for people with autism and their families. Inclusive communities are ones that recognize the diversity of their members and create opportunities for everyone to participate and contribute. For individuals with ASD, inclusion means being accepted for who they are, having access to resources and services that support their unique needs, and being able to fully participate in social, educational, and employment opportunities.

Despite the importance of inclusion, many individuals with ASD continue to face barriers to participation. Some may struggle with sensory overload in certain environments, making it difficult for them to attend events or engage in social activities. Others may face discrimination and stigma that prevent them from accessing the resources they need. To create more inclusive communities, we need to start by educating ourselves about autism and other disabilities. By learning about the unique needs and perspectives of individuals with ASD, we can better understand how to support them and create more inclusive environments. We also need to advocate for policies and programs that support disability inclusion. This includes everything from ensuring that public spaces are accessible to individuals with disabilities to creating employment opportunities that are tailored to their strengths and abilities.

As we celebrate Autism Awareness Month, we are reminded that this is an important opportunity to raise awareness about ASD and advocate for disability inclusion. By working together to create more inclusive communities, we can ensure that everyone is valued, supported, and able to fully participate in all aspects of life.

The Autism Society of the CNMI will be hosting various events throughout the month of April in honor of Autism Awareness Month. Such events include:

  • April 2, 2023, at 4pm: Walk for Autism at American Memorial Park
  • April 3, 2023, at 1:30pm: Proclamation signing at Saipan World Resort
  • April 8, 2023, at 10am: Autism Egg Hunt at Sugar King Park
  • April 16, 2023, at 2pm: Ride for Autism starting at the Airport Field to Micro Beach field
  • April 29, 2023, at 6pm: Quiz Night at Crowne Plaza Resort Saipan

The Northern Marianas Protection and Advocacy Systems, Inc. is the CNMI state-designated Protection & Advocacy agency that protects the civil, legal, and human rights of individuals with disabilities. For more information, contact NMPASI at our office numbers (670) 235-7273/74, or visit our website at www.nmpasi.org.

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