Autism is characterized by poor social interactions and unusual behavioral traits. In India, currently, one in 500 people are diagnosed with autism and that translates to 0.2 percent of the population as per the Rehabilitation Council of India. Before people knew about ‘Autism’, children with autistic disorders were routinely diagnosed with mental retardation. Autism Awareness began around 1980s and it gradually grew in the medical community with a lot of organizations that have become the support system of autistic children and their parents. The first exclusive school for autism-affected youth, called Open Door, was established in 1994.At present, there are more than 40 organizations and support groups that help people with behavioral and speech therapies besides extending mental support and love.
Let us take a look at some of these organizations:
- Tanay Foundation
With the knowledge and awareness that Meenakshi Agarwal gathered during the counselling and treatment sessions of her son Tanay, who was diagnosed with autism in 1999, she went ahead to set up the Tanay Foundation in 2012 at Ahmedabad.Tanay Foundation offers support services for autistic children in terms of counselling sessions, vocational training, early communication intervention, and activity-based learning modules. They also focus on certain vital aspects like body mechanics, sensory therapy,ergonomics, and stress management as part of their time table.
- Autism Centre for Excellence (ACE)
ACE was launched in 2014 by ArchanaNayar and Sameer Nayar, at Gurgaon. Through a scientifically proven method of Applied Behavioral Analysis, ACE aims to impart communication, academic, and social skills.They also conduct self-help sessions, occupational therapy programs, as well as sports activities for children and adults with autism.
- Action for Autism (AFA)
AFA, an initiative by Merry Barua in 1991, is one of the oldest organizations working towards providing support for people with autism. Besides providing several survival facilities for autistic people, AFA also organizes co-curricular activities like pottery, painting, diagnostic assessments, and self-help programs.
- Assisted Living for Autistic Adults (ALFAA)
ALFAA was started at Bangalore by Ruby Singh in 2009 to create good living conditions and vocational opportunities for autistic teenagers and adults.The organization offers daycare and residential facilities to support people with autism for leading a normalized life and besides offering facilities like vocational training, educational programs, and counselling.
Although autism diet has been gradually increasing with people accepting autism as a neural disorder rather than a psychological problem, conventional treatment for Autism has not been helpful over the years. People are still majorly dependent on behavioral therapies, speech therapies etc. to hope for a normalized lifestyle for autistic people. But alternative therapies like stem cell therapy has stirred up the scene of Autism therapeutics lately. Stem cells have the potential to regenerate neural tissues to reverse the neural damage and thus help children with autism with a healthy promise. Recently, numerous scientific reports have supported the efficacy of stem cell treatment in Autism scenario and healthcare organizations like Advancells have aided in many successful cases of Autism stem cell therapy in India. But although stem cell therapy has proven to be a silver lining for Autism, therapies related to speech, occupation and speech are the pillars of normalized societal interaction for every autistic person. For more information and enquiries, email firstname.lastname@example.org