Wednesday, April 2, 2014

WORLD AUTISM AWARENESS DAY

"You’re here to defend the defenseless,
    to make sure that underdogs get a fair break;
Your job is to stand up for the powerless,
    and prosecute all those who exploit them."
~ Psalm 82:3-4, MSG ~

TODAY is World Autism Awareness Day!  

You may recall a fact we mentioned during our Rare Disease Day observance in February.  Parents raising a child with an autism spectrum disorder constitute one of the largest subsets our ministry serves.  We offer support to parents who have children with the PDD-NOS label, Asperger's Syndrome, and autism ranging from mild to profoundly severe.  Some of the children our parents are raising may merely seem "quirky", while others are completely non-verbal. 

Given how pervasive this diagnosis has become in recent years, the need for our encouragement and assistance has continued to grow at a steady rate.  This neuro-developmental disorder cannot necessarily be seen by the naked eye, so parents endure a heartbreaking amount of judgment from others.  Our Parent Mentor Program can help a mother or father heal from those false assumptions of others and equip them for the daily living.

However, while we do well in supporting parents for the long haul, it's fair to ask how an organization like Snappin' Ministries can make a real difference on a big day like today.  After all, there are much larger non-profits out there whose sole focus is on autism.  What would a small Christian ministry like ours have that could be any more impactful to families on World Autism Awareness Day?

Let me tell you what we have...  TRUTH & LIGHT of Christ.  While some parents find themselves disheartened with certain advocacy groups representing the autism community, we offer love and support to everyone.  To that end, we designed some easy online tools to help parents this year, that can be used from virtually ANYWHERE in the world.  Above, you can grab and download our Autism Awareness Fast Facts cards.  These are designed to print out in 4x6 cards that you can hand out to people you encounter in your daily life, just to spread awareness.


In addition to reaching others, we created a tool to foster relationship with The Source of all  TRUTH on Autism Awareness Day.  The "Appeal for Autism" card offers the opportunity for parents to share a prayer and praise as well as insert a photo of their special someone on the spectrum.  We are inviting parents to complete the cards and upload them to our Facebook Event Page.  Instructions on how to do so are on that event page.  You can also print out a copy, so you can join us in this Spectrum of Prayer on World Autism Awareness Day.

In creating these 2 small tools, our hope is that we will create godly advocacy and prayerful support for families living with Autism every day of the year, just like Psalm 82 mandates.

PRAY:  LORD, bring an extra measure of awareness and compassion to Autism Spectrum Disorders today.  Bless those diagnosed as well as their doctors, therapists, researchers, teachers, and lawmakers in a special way as they are on the front lines of Autism every day.

For more information or to get involved, please join our event for World Autism Awareness Day on Facebook.

~ Barb Dittrich

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