By Kodey Toney
As many know this is Autism Awareness Month, and if you’re looking for something to do to help support and spread awareness the answer may be a short walk away. One local group has decided to raise awareness and funds to help support the cause in our area.
Walk A Mile In My Shoes/Autism Awareness Walk is being organized by a group of ladies from Haskell County. This is the first year for the walk, and will be held in Stigler Saturday, April 27 at Roye Park. The walk will start at 2 p.m. There is donation of $10 per family to walk. There will be ribbons and bracelets for participants. Pre-registration begins April 16th at Miss Behavin’ Children’s Boutique in Stigler.
One of the biggest things I complain about with autism is the lack of awareness, resources, and funding for rural areas such as eastern Oklahoma. This is part of the reason I started this column, have pushed to help the Parents of Autism group, and have attended the Partners in Policymaking program. I feel there is so much we can do for this area.
This is such a great idea to help with that effort, and I applaud the coordinators of this event. Ashley Fenton, Amanda Cariker Sutherland and April Lantz (along with others I’m sure) have pooled their efforts to do something to help bring that awareness to this region and support those families coping with autism.
All donations from the walk will go to AutismOklahoma.org, and those donations stay in Oklahoma. Anyone who can’t make it, but would like to donate can drop their checks off at Miss Behavin’, or contact me and I can take them the day of the event.
Everyone is encouraged to wear blue shirts.
As a side note, I was driving through Oklahoma City Friday night and noticed that Devon Tower (the tallest building downtown) was lit up in blue. Thought that was awesome. There were a couple others with a blue tint as well.
There have been several in the past few years throughout the world that show support by illuminating their structures. Some of the coolest for me include the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the CN Tower in Toronto, the Superdome in New Orleans, Florida State Capitol, CBS Headquarters in Los Angeles, the Great Pyramids in Giza, Egypt, the Sydney Opera House in Australia, Christ the Redeemer in Brazil, and Table Mountain in South Africa. There are many more beautiful pictures on the Light It Up Blue site: http://www.lightitupblue.org/
I hope that all of you will attend the walk later this month. Whatever you do, do something to make sure everyone knows and understands the significance of this disorder.