April is Autism Awareness Month so there’s no better time to reflect on and remember the words of Temple Grandin, “Different, not less”.
Here are 5 powerful videos that do an amazing job of reminding us that acceptance means valuing people for who they are and fighting for respect, equal rights and opportunities, and social inclusion of people with autism. Of course it is also vital to acknowledge the very real challenges that autistic people and their families can face. However we must do this without promoting further fear and stigmatization. There are 2 sides to every story, so let’s not forget to share stories like these which give us “positive, respectful, and accurate information about autism and autistic people”.
I would like to thank Kristen Callow who brought my attention to these wonderful videos. Kristen is a very proud mum of a very special young lady who also happens to have autism. Kristen works tirelessly to help people understand that what we believe about autism matters, and how we communicate about autism matters too. Thank you.
1. Dillan’s Voice and Dillan’s Path
“Not being able to speak is not the same as not having anything to say.” ~ Rosemary Crossely
2. “How Autism Freed me to be myself” – Rosie King
“Instead of punishing anything that strays from normal, why not celebrate uniqueness and cheer every time someone unleashes their imagination?”
3. “Ask an Autistic: What is Autism?”
This video features an autistic young woman named Amethyst Schaber, who has a fabulous video series called “Ask An Autistic,” in which she covers all sorts of topics — from “What About Eye Contact?” To “What Are Autistic Meltdowns” to “What Is Neurodiversity?”
4. “Professor Puppet – Autism explained to kids”
This wonderful 2-minute video does a great job of explaining autism in easy-to-relate-to terms, and in a way that is respectful and positive.
5. “Alyssa’s Autism Acceptance Project”
This heartwarming, home produced 3-minute video by two Perth-based autistic siblings — Alyssa & Lachlan — captures some of the most important things to know about autistic people.
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