Every April 2nd we at Autism Speaks get together to “Light It Up Blue” for World Autism Awareness Day. Our goal is to reach as many people in the world as we can with our message; to start a conversation. We want people to ask about the color and then hope it leads to a dialogue about autism.
Now, as much as I love this initiative, I always ask myself, what more could we do? How do we keep this conversation going all year long? This is why what Sevenly is doing is making a difference in our autism community. Sevenly, for those who don’t know, is an organization focused on raising funds and awareness for the world’s greatest causes & charities. They produce high quality, limited edition awareness products.
Ever since our partnership with Sevenly began they have done a remarkable job of spreading awareness of autism. With the charity collection on their website, they promote messages such as “Live Loud for Autism”, “Unconditional Love” and “Different Not Less” to name a few. These messages have appeared on the shirts in their collection over the years.
As a self-advocate, I often speak throughout the country on the topic of autism. I like mentioning Sevenly because their products in these collections spread autism awareness. Every time someone puts on one of these shirts, and they are seen in their communities, the message is spread loud and clear. From a fundraising stand point, the fact that Sevenly donates 7 dollars to their charity’s for each shirt sold (including Autism Speaks) is icing on the cake!
The majority of the families I know, who have an individual on the spectrum, have one of these shirts. A mom I know from Chicago owns 7 shirts. Another mom from Boston owns 12. It goes to show that not only are these shirts awareness catching but also pretty stylish. People want to wear them (including myself).
So as our awareness effort moves forward I’m happy to know that Sevenly has our backs. I can say personally that when people help support our cause it also makes life easier for people like me. There are still so many people out there that have no idea of what autism is and that can sometimes mean a great deal of ignorance towards people like myself.
With Sevenly’s support, and our support of them I hope we can keep this vital conversation of autism going. With 1 in 88 individuals being diagnosed with autism the more people we have behind us the better off we will be!
You can learn more about Sevenly and their charity collection here.