Autism Awareness Month

A note from our President, Al Samouelian.

The month of April is Autism Awareness Month. I hope that this allows all of us the opportunity to learn more about Autism.

My son Henry was diagnosed with Autism in kindergarten, just 3 years ago. Because this topic is near and dear to my heart, I wanted to write and share content this month to provide some education on what Autism is, what the signs and symptoms are, how we can support families and individuals who are impacted by Autism and determine what the future holds?

I hope you enjoy this journey. I simply want to accomplish two things – that we all gain more knowledge on what Autism is and that we embrace individuals with autism.

Be patient, be kind and be their friend. Autism is not a disease. Autism cannot be cured. Unlocking the passion of Autistic children has historically gifted our world with true geniuses in art, music and other areas of innovation.

I would like to share this video that I found of a boy named Ian. His story is strikingly similar to that of my son Henry. 

Here are some facts about Henry: Henry was born 3 months premature on April 22, 2009.  He weighed 2.5 lbs and spent 60 days in the NICU.  He came home on Father’s Day – 1 month before his actual due date.

Henry is like every other kid.  He loves to play, he is very curious, and wants to be successful. However, he learns at a different pace, he has sensory issues, and he is unaware of social cues.

As an example, Henry loves building sand castles, but hates the feeling of sand. Henry has trouble using eye contact, but so does his healthy brother and sister.  We have our work cut out for us.

I hope you enjoy this journey as much as I do.  Taking the time to explore, learn, and be real, is what life is all about. Feel free to share stories along the way of how you have been influenced by Autism.

Stay tuned for more content to come both here, on our RPM blog, and on our social media pages.

Sincerely, Al Samouelian, President, RPM

**You can donate to the Autism Alliance of Michigan during this month through our GoFundme page.