Thank you so much for your support in making this an incredible Autism Acceptance Month! As April comes to a close, we at ASAN are profoundly grateful and impressed by how much backing Autism Acceptance Month has garnered from the public and from our supporters. It’s time for us to thank you for all we’ve achieved together this April, and also to look forward to the future.
This month, the Autism Acceptance Month web site has received tens of thousands of page hits. Our pledge has more than 700 signatures, 13 other organizations we approached have signed on as supporters of Autism Acceptance (you can check them out on our Partners page!), ThinkGeek released three new T-shirts promoting neurodiversity and generously donated 100% of the proceeds to us, and we’ve published over a dozen guest blog posts by self-advocates and allies about what acceptance means to them personally. Similarly, our What Is Autism? page recently included a Personal Experiences sub-section, which hosts an additional set of short essays.
Our hosted events – numerous film screenings, a sensory friendly concert, the last Day of Mourning vigil, a video game tournament, an open mic Celebration of Autism, and an “Ask Me About” hosted by autistic adults – were all great successes! We at ASAN’s national branch in DC were delighted to meet our supporters during our two film screenings at the National Youth Transitions Center, and to receive reports from across the USA about other events hosted by national branches and by our supporters. We couldn’t have asked for more.
The real body of our work this month, though, has been our Resources page. We created it to be a compendium of articles, essays and information across the Internet gently introducing people to the concept of autism, as well as for Autistic self-advocates, parents of Autistic adults and children, and educators of Autistic people. The Resources page is where we listed our Autism Acceptance Month ebook when it came out: And Straight On Till Morning, a collection of essays by Autistic writers on awareness and acceptance. And, last week, we also added dozens of PDF fact sheets to each subsection, written by us and by our friends at MCIE, in the hopes that they can become a reference to people wanting to learn – or teach – about autism and being Autistic.
Finally, we’ve released our Listen Up! PSA campaign for Autism Acceptance Month. These PSAs have also had thousands of views on Youtube, and right now we’re in the process of contacting national and local television networks with our friends and supporters, asking them to air Listen Up.
It’s been an incredibly busy and rewarding month. We couldn’t have even dreamed of this – any of this – happening without having, from the very beginning, your unwavering assistance, interest, input and passion. You helped us put Autism Acceptance Month on the nation’s radar for good. You helped prove what we’ve been saying all along – that anyone can achieve their goals if provided with appropriate accommodation and support. That’s invaluable, and it’s what gets us through these busy, intense and sometimes trying campaigns.
So thank you, from the bottom of our hearts. We hope and look forward to continuing to work together to create a world where everyone is accepted and included.