Each April, thousands, potentially millions, of Americans come together to “promote autism awareness, inclusion and self-determination for all, and assure that each person with ASD is provided the opportunity to achieve the highest possible quality of life,” according to the Autism Society.

How can I make a difference during Autism Awareness Month

How You Can Support Autism Awareness

Though society has made great advances in our understanding of autism and the way we assist those with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), there’s still so much more that needs to be done.

With 1 in 68 children born with ASD and 3.5 million Americans currently living with autism, it’s likely you know someone affected by the disorder. In honor of Autism Awareness Month, below are a few ways you can show support for the ones you love and the autism community as a whole.

Wear blue throughout the month.

On Monday, April 2, the world watched as buildings, national landmarks, and numerous statues were illuminated in blue light, as part of the “Light It Up Blue” campaign by Autism Speaks. Additionally, many people throughout the United States and world showed their support by also wearing blue. But with 30 days in April, who says that has to be the last time you throw your favorite blue shirt on? 

Connect the puzzle pieces.

Just like breast cancer awareness is represented by the Pink Ribbon, autism awareness is represented by the Puzzle Ribbon. Whether on your social media page, backpack, or t-shirt, show off your Puzzle Ribbon with pride.

Donate to organizations that support people with autism and autism awareness.

If you have the means, the start of April is a wonderful excuse to donate to organizations that are positively impacting the lives of people with autism. Studies show that an autism diagnosis costs families roughly $17,000 a year (accounting for speech and physical therapy, school services, medication, etc.). Organizations that provide scholarships and financial assistance to those on the spectrum are vital. 

Participate in charity organizations.

Especially throughout April, you can join together with people in your community to walk in support of those with autism and to help raise money for autism-related services.

Read a book by someone with autism.

Get a glimpse into the life of someone with autism by reading a book by one of these famous authors with autism. From funny to heartwarming, their stories give you an honest look into the lives of those who see the world differently. 

Are you or someone you know looking to find your path on the way to success while having a learning disability? Debra Solomon of Spectrum Strategies helps young adults with autism and other learning disabilities identify their strengths and challenges to help them find a job, vocational program, or college that best fits them!