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.

12 July 2014

HeART BEATS 2 Concert

The Health for Autism Research and Training Center (HeART Center) held its second fundraising concert on 14 June 2014 entitled “Heart Beats 2” at Palmeras Garden Restaurant in San Pablo City, Laguna. It featured the musical talents of RV Mendiola, Emman Zamora, Thara Santiago, Franco Cagayat, and Rance Paul Yap, persons with autism (PWAs) whose families ardently support the center’s cause. The performers dazzled the audience not only with their vocal ability and nimble fingers but also with their courage and focus onstage.

The Amazing Duet, Thara & Franco

The performances would not have been successful had it not been for the unconditional love and support from the PWAs’ families who had all but joined their children or siblings in song or on the piano. This is but a glimpse of the kind of treatment of PWAs the center’s founders wish to involve people in, especially those closest to PWAs.

The center’s approach focuses on dietary intervention, aquatic programs and research. PWAs are very likely to be victims of metabolic disorders. Aisa Mendiola told the event’s attendees that even fruits and vegetables considered at worst benign by everyone may bring harm to PWAs. Aquatic programs aid in the management of behaviors and training of PWAs.

These programs were inspired by the experiences of the center’s founder, Aisa Mendiola, with her son, RV, and her student, Rance Paul. Their unparalleled attraction to water was central to the establishment of an incentive scheme that has greatly facilitated their development.

The event’s organizers were overjoyed with the turnout of donors and other supporters who went home with more than what they had given.

HeART BEATS 2 was a proclamation that the center is filled to the brim with promise. The road to what the founders wish to achieve will be bumpy at best, but with the perseverance and unflagging spirit of those already involved and the growing support of multiple communities, these goals are far from impossible.

About the Author: Juan Carlo F. Mallari is a mathematics instructor at Ateneo de Manila University. He acquired his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Applied Mathematics, Major in Mathematical Finance from the same university in 2013 and 2014, respectively. He had two short stories selected for publications by Ateneo student organizations during his years as an undergraduate and was an English fiction fellow for the 12th Ateneo National Writers’ Workshop in May 2014. He likes to think he loves numbers and words equally and dreams of one day teaching an elective merging mathematics and creative writing. Above all, Carlo is a supremely annoying and infinitely grateful uncle, brother, and son to the four dearest people in his life who happen to carry “Mallari” in their names as well.


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