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.

03 March 2010

Manila Jaycees Shining Light for Autism

By: Cathy Genovia

Manila Jaycees fulfilled their promise to ASP: a field trip to ARK Avilon Zoo in Pasig City last February 27, for thirty (30) children with autism (CWA).

the Manila Jaycees with ASP delegations at ARK Avilon Zoo

Jaycee representatives Mario Dizon and Edison Yap fetched the CWA at 1pm with a bus. ASP was represented by National Treasurer Evelyn Go, with volunteer Alice Alagos and yours truly. The children, and their parents, came from ASP Commonwealth Chapter, Stimulation and Therapeutic Activity Center (STAC) and UP College of Medical Professions Therapy Services.

Other representatives who joined the fieldtrip were Teacher Lorna Villariez of ASP Commonwealth Chapter, accompanied by Ms. Luz Cabauatan of the QC Social Services Development Department. UP Camp’s Dr Ferdiliza Garcia and Penny Cheng volunteered there time to ensure and accommodate the specific special needs (like sensory issues or tantrums) of the children with autism.

The activity aimed to provide opportunity for less fortunate CWAs to have fun in a therapeutic outing outside their normal environment. According to Mr. Dizon, autism afflicts the indigent community the hardest, because limited government resources. Most indigent children with autism grow up isolated, unable to integrate with and contribute to society. The project is a first time partnership with the ASP.

To help facilitate the activity, Ate Alice and I lined up the kids and distributed their IDs. We were welcomed by the other Manila Jaycee Officers and Members as soon as we arrived. Everyone was excited on this rare opportunity. After some picture taking, all went into the first floor of the zoo.

Collin, one of the resident orangutans of Avilon Zoo made friends with the children and hugged them. Other resident animals were Claudia, the white tiger and different species of snakes, crocodiles, fishes, birds and many more. The children also fed rabbits and guinea pigs. Nothing can compare to the smiles I saw on their faces. These moments were also captured in photos.

PWAs during their roaming at ARK Avilon Zoo

After two hours of roaming, viewing and playing; the children were called for merienda of spaghetti, hotdog and pancake, courtesy of the Manila Jaycees.

As part of the M anila Jaycee’s Munting Liwanag Project, ASP received a prototype poster on the different Signs and Symptoms of Autism which as an educational tool for Bgy. Health Centers, Day Care Centers and Public Schools.

To symbolize the beginning of this new partnership, ASP received a plaque of appreciation ; while Angel Baller Bands were worn by Jaycee representatives and members to signal their support for ASP’s autism awareness and advocacy.

ASP would like t o thank Manila Jaycees for the initial project and look forward to more meaningful projects ahead. May your light continue to shine for children with autism and their families.

(from left) Mario Dizon -Munting Liw anag Vice Chairman, Edison Chang- Munting Liwanag Chairman, Evelyn Go-ASP Treasurer, Toby Claudio- JCI Manila President andSteve Baltao- JCI Manila Secretary General

the flock of angels from the Munting Liwanag and JCI Manila with Evelyn Go with their angel baller bands.

Evelyn Go with Munting Liwanag Chair, Edison Go & Vice Chair Mario Dizon and JCI Manila President Toby Claudio and Steve Baltao-JCI Manila Secretary General


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