In support of World Autism Awareness Day, several members of UR Medicine's Golisano Children's Hospital's Neurodevelopmental and Behavioral Pediatrics Department hosted a free awareness event today in the main lobby of Strong Memorial Hospital. As a way to increase awareness and advocate for patients with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), families and community members passing by were provided with various resources and information.
In the past year, more than 500 new diagnoses of autism spectrum disorder were made at Golisano Children's Hospital. With an increasing need for diagnosis and treatment that will meets the unique sensory needs of these youth, the William and Mildred Levine Foundation announced in December that it'd name a new pediatric autism clinic. The building is projected to open in the spring/summer of 2016 near the route 390/Kendrick Road interchange.
Many patients will benefit from the services and sensory experience of the new location, including Jeremiah Iheoma, a fifth grader at Canandaigua Elementary. Jeremiah was diagnosed with autism in 2013 and decided to write a book about it.
In “My ‘Super’ Life with Autism” Jeremiah shares his first-hand experience of what it’s like growing up with autism spectrum disorder, specifically his different moods and how he sees having autism as a special “super power.” The book also features a few stories of famous people with autism, public figures Jeremiah researched on his own.
Jeremiah was inspired by some of his friends who had already published books. With the help of his art therapist at the David Hochstein School of Music & Dance, Jeremiah created the illustrations for the book out of clay figurines and colored paper.
“Jeremiah really made this his own project,” said his mom Lisa. “He’s very self-aware and bright. Having his story out there and being a part of the book signings means the world to him.”
“My ‘Super’ Life with Autism” can be purchased for $10 at amazon.com. Visit the web site to learn more about Jeremiah and where you can meet him at future signing events!
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