World Autism Awareness Day is observed on 2nd April annually across the world. This day is observed to spread awareness about autism and to ensure that the world becomes more inclusive so that people suffering from autism are able to lead meaningful lives as an integral part of society.
The rate of autism in the world is high – almost 1 in every 60 in the United States suffer from this disorder. However, unfortunately, there is a lack of awareness and understanding of this disease.
The theme for World Autism Awareness Day 2019 is ‘Assistive Technologies, Active Participation.’ Assistive technologies can effectively reduce the barriers for people suffering from autism to live their life meaningfully and purposefully. So, this year’s celebration will focus on leveraging the use of assistive technology as a tool to reduce any social and economic barriers that people with autism might be facing, thus promoting equality and inclusiveness.
It was in 2008 that the United Nations General Assembly declared 2nd April as ‘World Autism Awareness Day.’
What is Autism?
According to webmd.com, “Autism is a complex neurobehavioral condition that includes impairments in social interaction and developmental language and communication skills combined with rigid, repetitive behaviors.” So, people suffering from autism might face challenges with social skills, and communication, both verbal and nonverbal.
While its cause is still unknown, researchers believe genetic and environmental factors can cause autism. Also, while there is no cure, educational support, and speech and language therapy can certainly mitigate symptoms and aid patients and their near and dear ones.