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.

23 October 2010

AutiSM Marikina Partners to Harness CWA Talents

AutiSM is the coined name given to the partnership of SM Supermalls and Autism Society Philippines. The partnership started in 2004 and has led to an increase in PWD awareness and advocacy in different malls around the country. This time, ASP Marikina Valley Chapter collaborates with SM City Marikina for their activities.

During the celebration of Book Month held in SM Marikina sometime last August 2010, 13-year-old Christian Ambion, a child with autism and member of ASP Marikina Valley chapter (ASP-MVC), amazed everyone with his energetic and enthusiastic reading of a story. Christian mesmerized the young audience composed of elementary school kids with his reading. Even the public school teachers and the beauteous Ms. Mitchell Martel, Mall Manager of SM Marikina, applauded, amazed at the boy’s talent. They wondered if he indeed had a disability.

Inspired by what transpired during the event, Ms. Martel challenged ASP-MVC President, Alex Cabason, Jr., to hold another activity for the October Children’s Month. In response to the challenge, ASP-MVC gathered parents: Jorge and Tonette Pacunana, Edwin and Maya Ignacio, and professionals: Teacher Joanne Coronado, Speech Pathologist and Administrator of Milestones Therapy Center, Teacher Maan Alvaran, SPED and Administrator of Schola Antipolo Integrated, and Ms. Hazel Navarro, to conceptualize a stimulating activity for the kids.

SM management readily approved ASP-MVC’s latest project “This Kid Has Talent!”, an interactive program aimed at discovering the hidden talents of children with special needs. Based on the concept of Multiple Intelligences, they set up four stations strategically at the SM Event Center, corresponding to 4 of the 7 areas of intelligence namely: Music, Movement, Art and Linguistics. Each station was manned by parent and professional volunteers from ASP-MVC’s partner schools and equipped with necessary materials to bring out the kids’ talents.

The SM City Marikina Event Center opened the program on October 10, 2pm. The activity was open to the public. Kids were busy honing their talents as each was given time to visit and try out each station.

For their concerns regarding their children with autism (CWA), parents availed of FREE Professional Advice from our volunteer Paediatrician, Physical Therapist, Speech Pathologist and Occupational Therapist at the Consultation Area.

Selected CWAs performed different numbers, representing each of the Four Intelligences. For Music, Garin sang “Close to You.” For Movement, Roj Pacunana danced with sister, Lia and her friend Maedin to the music “Catch a Falling Star”. For Art, Nicolo Kwan demonstrated his talent for On-the-Spot Portrait sketching and painting and for Linguistics, Christian Ambion returned to deliver the elocution piece “O Captain, My Captain” and JC Ignacio read a poem. An Acoustic Band composed of teachers also entertained the audience with three songs.
An Acoustic Band performed to entertain the audience

After the program, children who completed the four stations were given small gifts from the chapter and the professionals-volunteers were also given “Certificates of Recognition” for their labours. Ms. Martel and Mr. Cabason exchanged congratulatory and gratuity addresses for the success of the activity. Watch out for ASP-MVC’s Christmas Party at SM Activity Center, SM City Marikina this December!
Acknowledgements: SM City Marikina (SMCM), Ms. Mitchell Martel, SMCM Mall Manager, SMCM Staff and Personnel, “Best Minds in this part of the Universe” ASP-MVC Chapter Officers, Hazel Navarro (ASP-MVC’s PRO), Parent Members: Couple Jorge and Tonette Pacunana and Couple Edwin and Maya Ignacio; Professional Members: Teacher Joanne Coronado (Speech Pathologist) Teacher Maan Alvaran (SPED Teacher) and Partner Schools Milestones Therapy Center, Schola Antipolo Integrated and Tots at Work, Volunteer Parents and Professionals.


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