The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being of persons on the autism spectrum disorder. We envision a society where Filipinos on the spectrum become the best of their potentials -- self-reliant, independent, productive, socially-accepted citizens of an Autism-OK Philippines.

26 November 2009

Launching Hope, Spinning Dreams

By: Irene Carolina A. Sarmiento

“I think the book is so nice. It almost tells [the story] about me and my brother,” said Macy, after reading the newly released children’s book about autism, Spinning. Like the character in the story, 9 year-old Macy has a brother with autism named Adrian. She recommends that other children also read the book so that they may learn to be more understanding towards individuals with autism.

The book launch for Spinning was held on October 24, 2009, the first day of the 11th National Conference and 1st Southeast Asian Conference on Autism: Autism Beyond Borders (where hope prevails), at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia Complex. After the author and illustrator introduced Spinning, there was a brief, yet touching, audio-visual presentation of Macy reading from the book and relating it to her story with Adrian. ASP also raffled off books to fifteen lucky winners. During the lunch break, there was a table for book signing and picture taking with the author and illustrator.

Teacher Irene Sarmiento
The book was written by Irene Carolina A. Sarmiento, whose stories have received prizes from the Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards as well as the Philippine Free Press Literary Contest. Irene is also an occupational therapist who has worked with children with autism. The book also contains artwork from Christian Oliver “Rev” A. Cruz of Ang Illustrador ng Kabataan (Ang INK), who was awarded Honorable Mention in the 2009 PBBY Alcala Prize. Rev is also a physical therapist specializing in ergonomics and aquatherapy.

Published by the multi-award winning Anvil Publishing, Inc., Spinning aims to highlight what children with autism are capable of being and sharing with others as whole human beings. The story features Tin-Tin, a smart little girl, who wants to understand her Kuya’s “funny” behavior. As in the title, “spinning” (or “twirling”) is one such repetitive behavior seen in some children with autism.

For Filipino readers, there is also a Tagalog edition of Spinning, entitled Paikot-ikot. Both versions cost P150. These may be purchased at National Book Store or ordered online. The English edition is also sold at the Autism Society Philippines Office and at ASP events to raise funds as well as awareness.

Read, love, and spin dreams!


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