Last year The Princess shocked me when she told me that instead of birthday presents, she wanted her party guests to bring coat donations for those in need. This year, she shocked me again. This year for her birthday she chose to accept donations to Autism Speaks in lieu of gifts. Autism Speaks is an organization dedicated to increasing awareness, funding research into the causes, prevention and treatments, and to advocating the needs of individuals with autism and their families. I can't even begin to say how insanely proud I am that my girl chose to donate to this organization instead of getting presents. She has such a kind heart and I feel so blessed that she has learned such an important lesson at a young age.
Autism is a mental condition that usually develops before the age of 3. It ranges from mild social impairments to a severe disability that requires lifelong parental, school, and societal support. This cause is a very important one to our family. My cousin Moose has severe autism, you can read my post about him: I Love Someone With Autism. The Princess is raising funds for the Orange County Walk Now for Autism event on November 11. If you would like to donate to this cause you can visit her donation page. So far her page has raised $550!
Early diagnosis can make a big difference! For those of you who don't know much about Autism:
The following "red flags" may indicate your child is at risk for an autism spectrum disorder. If your child exhibits any of the following, please don’t delay in asking your pediatrician or family doctor for an evaluation:
- No big smiles or other warm, joyful expressions by six months or thereafter
- No back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles or other facial expressions by nine months
- No babbling by 12 months
- No back-and-forth gestures such as pointing, showing, reaching or waving by 12 months
- No words by 16 months
- No meaningful, two-word phrases (not including imitating or repeating) by 24 months
- Any loss of speech, babbling or social skills at any age
This cause is very near to our hearts. If you are able, please stop by The Princess' donation page to make a donation in Moose's honor. All donations big and small are very much appreciated. If you aren't able to make a donation at this time, please share this post. Help us spread awareness! ♥ Thank you ♥
Take care and God bless!