April 2nd was World Autism Awareness Day(WAAD) which put a spotlight on the hurdles that people with autism and others living with autism face every day. This focus will continue throughout April which is Autism Awareness and Acceptance month.

As a growing global health issue, owing to its increasing exposure in the press and common knowledge, autism is an issue that is only gaining more understanding and Autism awareness activities increase and develop people’s knowledge of children and adults who have autism spectrum disorder (ASD). It is estimated that there are around 700,000 Autistic people in the UK. It important we improve and enhance education, care, and experiences to help autistic children and young people fulfill their potential.

Lion Di Ryan explained “Autism is a hidden disability. You can’t tell someone is autistic by the way they look, but possibly through their behaviour. Autistic people are often misunderstood and may require support with things like communication, interaction with others, and feeling overwhelmed by the activity around them.”

Bexhill Lions Club is working towards getting its Members “Autism Aware” and its activities ‘ Autism Friendly’.

Lion Sue Saunders explained “Adults and children can attend our events and be assured that we have had training to make us Autism aware. If we have to change some things at our events to make it more comfortable for adults / children with Autism or sensory concerns we will do so. We will also try and set aside a specific time so that it may be quieter with less queuing. This proved to be very successful at our Christmas Santa Grotto. We are also planning for Members to be taught some basic signing which we believe will be helpful at our events.Do let us have any suggestions or questions about this as we are keen to meet the needs of all those attending our events.”

You can get more information at www.autism.org.uk

For information about how Lions continue to help the community or to discuss joining the Club, go to our Facebook page or call Lion Rick on 0345 833 9591