02 April 2012
UNIC Accra in collaboration with New Horizon School, one of the oldest privately-run schools in the country for children with disabilities including autism, organized a public event to mark World Autism Awareness Day. The event was supported by two UNIC partner NGOs, Emperor Gaza Foundation International and Splendors of Dawn Poetry Foundation.
A presentation on “Early diagnosis of Autism: How to identify children with Autism” was made by Dr. Albert Osei of Vaughan Centre for Autism, a Centre that specializes in services for children with autism in Vaughn, Canada. He highlighted the various signs and symptoms of autisms and called on parents to seek proper medical care for children living with autism.
Mrs. Salome Francois, the proprietress of New Horizon School, and the parent of a lady living with autism, recounted her experience in the early 1970s as she sought the right education environment for her child to learn in. She cautioned parents with children living with autism to treat them just as they would any child. “Living with autism is not the end of the world. We must nurture these children and ensure they get the right support” she stated.
In attendance were students from New Horizon School and parents. Partner institutions were also present. Parents were given the opportunity to ask questions and make brief remarks. Most of them thanked the UN for recognizing the Day and for holding an event to mark it.