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Monday, April 2, 2012

The Only Thing Missing In A_TISM is U - World Autism Awareness Day

Many of you already know, but for those who don't, we have a little boy, Makobe, who has autism. So it is very personal for us to support education and understanding of autism for those who have yet to have autism come into their lives. Or for those who know someone with autism but are unsure of how to interact with them. So today we've gone BLUE for AUTISM** in hopes to bring more then just awareness - we want to help you understand a bit about it too.

Our amazing son Makobe and our awesome dog Sadie.
This picture was taken on Makobe's first overnight canoe
trip into Algonquin Park - Canada. You can read about
it all here: Making Room For Autism In Your Canoe

Scary fact about autism: Did you know that the latest numbers from the CDC revealed the rate of autism has increased to 1 in 88 children.  By way of comparison, this is more children than are affected by diabetes, AIDS, cancer, cerebral palsy, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy or Down syndrome, combined. And the rate just keeps increasing every year!

So what do you do when you come across someone with autism?

Many people want to do the right thing but just don’t know how.

How to interact with a person who has autism:
A good place to start is to ask the child’s parents or teachers how you can best interact with the child. You need to know how best to approach the child - for example, it may be best not to approach the child directly but to play beside them and to take cues from them to start. Find out what the child’s main interest is - many
autistic children have a particular interest, like cars or trains, that you could use to engage them. You may also need to give warning of change - many autistic children find change difficult, so inform them in advance that you need to leave or that it will soon be lunch time and they need to pack up their toys etc. The main thing is to not be afraid of making mistakes and upsetting the child or causing a tantrum - it’s better to try, than to just disregard the child.*

*See more about interacting with a child with autism at:

Educating yourself about autism is the best way to understand what families are facing. And we really need your support, acceptance and understanding. After all, the only thing missing in A_TISM is U.

And thanks for taking the time to read this post. It really means a lot to us as a family.
Mike & Fiona ~ Badger Paddles... for those who dig the water.

**Going blue/Light It Up Blue: is part of an international awareness campaign for Autism pioneered by Autism Speaks and others. World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) was declared by the United Nations in 2007.


  1. This is super advice Fiona! Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thanks Kerrie. That means a lot. Thank you so much for your support! :o) ~ Fiona


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