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Dragonfly Dreamtime - St. Croix Courier - March 14, 2013

posted Mar 23, 2013, 7:13 AM by Dragonfly Centre for Autism Inc

Dragonfly Dreamtime

Mary Casement

March 14, 2013

Everyone at Dragonfly hopes you are getting hungry because dinner time with the St. George Masonic Lodge members is just around the corner. On Saturday, March 23rd, starting at 4 pm at the Masonic Lodge,  2 Carleton Street, in St. George,  the Masons are cooking up a full Roast Beef dinner with dessert, tea & coffee for only $10 each with all the proceeds going to support our Dragonfly summer camp programs.  Call soon so we will be sure to have enough food & seats for everyone: Mary at 465-8900 or Tom at 653-7505 for tickets before March 20th. 

And then be sure to keep your party hat on because April 2nd is World Autism Awareness Day and there will be lots happening.  We will be hosting an Open House at our Dragonfly Resource Centre, 36 Milltown Blvd, from 10 am – 4 pm.  This is a great chance for you to drop by to see the centre and find out about the services we offer while enjoying some light refreshments.  We’ll have lots of photos & videos about our summer camp, access to our library of autism books and equipment, and you can speak with staff to learn more about the mystery of autism, enter the coloring contest, enter your name for a door prize, and see some of the great Dragonfly items and art work we have for sale.  There are more events happening at the high school where the Autism Awareness student group of SSHS will be hosting a session that day with “experiential” booths where, for a few minutes, you can live in the world of person with autism and see how differently they experience everyday sensations.  The students are also planning an Autism Awareness Walk for later in the month so you might want to hike over to the school to offer your feet for that event.

 And then, just to be sure there is no shortage of things to do, the staff at the Royal Bank are launching their own Autism Awareness campaign that day.  I had the pleasure to give an autism information session at their office recently and they were so enthusiastic and eager to help spread the word that they came up with their own awareness plan.  Be sure to drop into the bank on your way to the high school!  I hear they will even have their own swarm of blue dragonflies.

If your group would like to learn more about autism then please call me at 465-8900 to arrange a presentation at your office or meeting hall.  Most people don’t realize the prevalence of autism in our community. As many as one in 100 people may have some degree of autism which means you probably have a relative, a friend, a neighbor, a client or a co-worker who has someone in their life diagnosed with autism.  By understanding more about the symptoms and challenges faced by people with autism, we can learn to be more accepting, helpful, and supportive of individuals with these behavior differences that make it so hard for them to function in our world.  They are real people with personalities, thoughts and feelings inside bodies that work a little, or a lot, differently than yours or mine.  On Autism Awareness Day let’s learn more about those differences so that we can look past them and see the real person tucked away behind the distracting symptoms.

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