In Argentina, one of the main problems that families experience is that in many provinces there are no professionals or services for them to access an early diagnosis. / Photo: Leo Vaca
The first free digital platform for people with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and their families, which was launched this Wednesday, will make it possible to find resources for education, health, friendly shops and leisure activities in one place, thanks to its operation with a geolocation system, which is expected to benefit the more than 500,000 people living with this condition in the country.
Autismored It will allow interaction between people with autism spectrum conditions, as well as direct and indirect family members, with services and resources from professionals, organizations and companies that are located nearby or online to facilitate access to their rights, according to its promoters.
“Faced with a diagnosis of autism, or the presumption of it, many families are adrift, without finding the necessary resources in the area where they live. The search for support, professional resources, schools, and many other needs brings anguish and stress to families, which is why being able to have a platform like Autismored where finding everything in one place is key,” Carina Morillo, co-founder of the Brincar Foundationone of the organizations promoting this initiative.
On the platform there will be an education sector, with schools, tertiary schools and universities that provide assistance; health, with professionals, diagnostic and treatment centers or teams, clinical analysis centers and therapeutic educational centers, hospitals, and places of medical hospitalization; and community, with autism-friendly shops and services.
Also a space for leisure, with support figures for leisure and recreation, companies, organizations and tourism agencies; labor insertion, with employment opportunities, job preparers and coaches, organizations and consultants, job training and sheltered workshops; and legal, with lawyers, legal advisors and organizations that defend the rights of people on the autism spectrum.
“We want it to be a self-managed network and to feed on people, families, professionals, friendly businesses and organizations that are joining. The idea is that they can see what they have near their homes and if not take advantage of the services that there are, which after the pandemic grew a lot,” said Morillo.
#AutismoRed comes to settle a huge debt in the field of autism. 👏
We want to help the entire Spanish-speaking community to take a step forward for greater inclusion. 💙🌎🥰 #redsocialglobal #Love #organizations #autismofeliz #plenainclusion #Todoenunololugar pic.twitter.com/sL69UrS2sS
— AutismoRed (@autismo_red) March 29, 2023
78 million people worldwide
Autism is a lifelong condition that impairs a person’s ability to communicate and relate to others.
Anyone can be born with autism and there are, so far, no studies indicating how to prevent it; however, early detection considerably improves the prognosis.
In Argentina, one of the main problems that families experience is that in many provinces there are no professionals or services for them to access an early diagnosis or adequate schooling for each case.
“Autismored is going to shorten distances and times. Today, between the time a parent suspects and actually reaches the diagnosis of their child, an average of 18 months pass, which is a lot. We want families to be able to get the resources they need as soon as possible and that they access services that allow them to solve this problem,” said Morillo.
According to the British medical journal The Lancetautism affects 78 million people worldwide and most of them do not have adequate access to health, education and social assistance services.
In Argentina, it is estimated that more than 500,000 people are on the autism spectrum and 80% of those who are adults are unemployed.
“The main barrier is accessibility, today a family still has to go through 35 schools to get a place. The problem is the environment and the prejudices that exist about these people, there are many myths, it is the main challenge we find. We hope that they can enjoy of their rights, that they can have a life that is as autonomous as possible, and for that autonomy it is necessary for the environment to be accessible,” said Morillo.
👉 Did you know that 78 million families in the world live with autism? #Autismored arrives to connect families with professionals, schools,
NGOs, and thousands of friendly resources, near you. 💙🌏 #AutismoRed #autismoamor #argentina #plenainclusion #Todoenunsololugar pic.twitter.com/fyZko8GyBf
— AutismoRed (@autismo_red) March 27, 2023
The founder of the Brincar Foundation explained that there are several initiatives that make places “friendly” with people with ASD, such as giving them medical appointments at quiet hours, lowering the sounds and strong lights in the places or putting up a menu with QR with all photos of dishes in a restaurant.
Autismored is promoted by the Rotary Club of Montserrat together with the Brincar Foundation, the Argentine Association of Autistic Parents (Apadea), the Argentine Program for Children, Adolescents and Adults with Autism Spectrum Conditions (Panaacea) and Globant.
How to enter the platform
“We want Autismored not only to be a platform that provides referred and geolocated information on the Autism Spectrum Condition, but also to later become a space where families can share and socialize their own experiences with other peers who are going through similar situations”, expressed the director of Apadea, Ricardo Saldaña.
To register in Autismored you have to go to autismored.org and click on the yellow button “SUMATE”. There you can select between “persona natural” (for people with autism, relatives or acquaintances) or the option “services and resources” (for organizations, companies or friendly environments).
How to join? 💙
1️⃣ Enter https://t.co/UQK5doaoU9
and click on “JOIN”
2️⃣ Then, in the option “Register now”
complete the requested data
3️⃣ The user must create their own profile and choose the “natural person” option or the “services and resources” option pic.twitter.com/zZ2rMxlvWV
— AutismoRed (@autismo_red) March 17, 2023