Georgios is my son, he is 4 years old and he is on the spectrum. From the time George was born, he seemed to be hitting developmental milestones, but he was always different. He was “just a quiet guy”, he was “so serious” – we always thought he was just an independent little dude but we never thought it was because he was disengaged. With the help of our pediatrician, we acted when we started noticing delays at 18 months old by starting New Jersey Early Intervention Services. He was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder at 2 years old. We LOVE our services. We live in New Jersey where physicians pay close attention to the signs and are not afraid to make recommendations for developmental intervention at a young age. We are so grateful to live in a place where there is a seemingly endless amount of resources and support for our family. Not everyone has this, though.
On May 16, 2020 I will join the Eagles organization and thousands of others from the community to ride, run or walk in the Eagles Autism Challenge. This event is dedicated to raising funds for innovative research and programs to address the complex issues presented by the condition of autism. I’m running a 5k and I’m not only doing it for my son, but I’m doing it for the millions of other families in this country that DO NOT have the support that my family has, readily available. There are families that DO NOT have good health benefits to help them with their ASD journey. There are families that DO NOT live in a place that offers services at little or no cost, based on household income. There are mothers, fathers, single, married, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters – many more amazing people that live the challenges, triumphs, joy, pain, anger and happiness that comes with caring for an individual with ASD.
By raising money and providing the necessary resources to thought leaders, we can advance scientific breakthroughs. All participant-raised funds, 100 %, will go directly towards autism research and/or programs at beneficiary institutions, as together we shift from autism awareness to action. I hope you will consider donating towards my fundraising goal to help transform the lives of those affected by autism today and tomorrow. Thank you!