Autism is often symbolized by a puzzle piece, representing the mystery still surrounding the disorder. “There is no definitive research that has come out and pinpointed an exact cause for autism,” said Ashley Parker, communications manager at the Autism Society of America. While, a lot of scientists are hard at work looking for answers, they have only found vague explanation. “It is a combination of genetic and environmental factors, but what those are and when they do or do not matter is something that we still do not know,” said Parker. For now, allies ask that folks get involved with events for Autism Awareness Month this April.
Autism Society of America 1-800-328-8476 autism-society.org
Light it Up Blue, April 2.
This year, on World Autism Awareness Day, thousands of iconic landmarks, businesses and homes will light up in blue to radiate awareness. Families and workplaces are encouraged to wear blue to show their support.
Autism Awareness Night at the Palace.
Watch the Detroit Pistons vs. Miami Heat, as they partner with Autism Speaks and Autism Alliance of Michigan, to raise awareness and funds for the cause. Kids’ tickets are free and a portion of all adult tickets go toward autism research.
7:30pm, Saturday Apirl 4. $40/upper-end, $20/lower-end. The Palace of Auburn Hills, 6 Championship Dr.
4th Annual Michigan Shines for Autism Gala & Afterglow.
This gala raises awareness and celebrates the individuals and organizations making an impact across the state. Special guest, and former Detroit Lion, Rodney Peete (right), will speak about his experience of raising a child with autism.
6pm, Saturday April 18. $150. DTE Energy, 1 Energy Plaza, Detroit. gala.autismallianceofmichigan.org.
PLAY Project 2-Day Intensive Workshop, April 24-25.
“We will do diagnostic evaluations, follow-up treatments and offer services that are parent intervention models,” said Amy Saalberg, office manager for The Play Project. Gain the tools to improve social skills and autism symptoms, as instructed by Dr. Richard Solomon, autism expert and developmental and behavioral pediatrician and the PLAY Project Team.
Friday and Saturday, April 24-25. $75/parent and student, $175/professional. Weber’s Inn, 3050 Jackson Rd. 734-585-5333. playproject.org