For the past eleven years, autism has been a intricate part of my life as one of my best friend's younger brother was diagnosed with autism at a very young age and since I grew up with him, it was kind of the "norm" for me. I have never looked at him differently than I would a person who is considered neuro-typical as people are people, no matter what differences they may have between them. However, that all changed when I was introduced to Mountaineer's School of Autism (a not-for-profit school for children (K-12) with autism and other disabilities) in April of 2018 as a part of my Global Engagement Project for my Peace Corps Prep program at Florida International University.
Since my introduction to MSA and working with the incredible staff and students, my knowledge about autism and how to better handle people who have ASD has increased significantly. Every day I thank God for giving me such an incredible opportunity to be able to work with these kids who are both on the spectrum as well as off in multiple different ways.
It is not me who is teaching the kids, but the kids that are teaching me. Every day these children teach me things about life...things you cannot learn in a textbook or read in a magazine or even watch on tv...they let me in and allow me to see them at their best as well as their worst. I get to see them grow and make accomplishments that they wouldn’t do on their own if it wasn’t for the school. They have taught me how to be patient, understanding, and a well-rounded individual.
Ever since I started working with children who have autism and other disabilities, it has really opened my eyes and made me realize how much we take for granted every day...from the simplest to the most complex of things.
Because of my experiences, I want to be able to take what I've been taught and be able to spread it to others that come from different backgrounds and cultures because autism isn't a race or ethnicity thing, it's an everybody thing and I believe that children and adults from all over should be given the opportunity to have better chances of improving how to go about improving ASD.
February 1, 2019, I was accepted to serve as a SkillCorps member with Global Autism Project in Saudi Arabia from July 16 - August 3 in Saudi Arabia to help spread GAP's mission of acceptance and integration of individuals with autism worldwide by training communities in culturally relevant, sustainable practices.
My goal for this fundraiser is $5,000. The funding covers breakfast in Brooklyn, NY, my accomodations in Brooklyn as well as in my partner site country, work-related travel expenses in country, transportation to airport with team to partner site country, meals in country.
I truly believe that I can make a change in this world...even if its a small one, I still see it possible. I truly believe that God was given me this voice to advocate for the ones who can't. and I believe that getting to participate on this trip will help me do just that.
Please help me reach my goal so that I can help children with autism across the globe. In fact, with your donation, you would be helping these children as well as your donation will be going towards resources to improve their daily lives. any little bit helps and will be much appreicated.
Thank you so much.