Autism Awareness Month is underway! To start out with a bang, the Welcome Inclusion Initiative took part in the Autism Awareness Month Kickoff Event at the Microsoft Store at University Village. WIN was joined by organizations such as the Mosaic Children's Therapy Clinics, Washington Autism Alliance & Advocacy, Social Learning Group, and the Academy for Precision Learning. WIN and these other groups were stationed around the Microsoft Store where they advocated for special needs awareness and spoke about their respective goals.
The Mosaic Children's Therapy Clinics is an organization that provides physical therapy, behavioral consulting, occupational therapy, social skills programs, speech therapy, psychological services, and nutritional aid for children in need and their families from birth to young adult. Washington Autism Alliance & Advocacy is a nonprofit working to improve access to autism insurance benefits and to ensure effective services in schools and communities regardless of any and all financial struggles. Courtney Butorac is the author of the A-Team series, Social Learning Group's series of books, activities, and lessons directed towards helping children with autism with social skills and directed towards educating the rest of the world on what it really means to be "autistic". The Academy for Precision Learning is a K-12 school for students with autism and a place for them to develop and learn alongside typically developing peers, as well as a place dedicated to preparing each kid for their best future. The Microsoft Store put on this event as a way to spread autism awareness and allow WIN and these other organizations to promote themselves and their respective missions.
A special thanks to Olivia Hernandez, the community development specialist for the Microsoft Store, for taking the WIN pledge and for organizing the whole event. All in all it was a fantastic, inspiring night that only hints at the great things to come this month.