The 2017 Los Angeles Marathon is just around the corner. Training has started and I am excited as ever. For the last three years, as I trained and participated in the marathon, I asked for your help in raising funds and awareness for Autism. Many of you stepped up and contributed with either a donation and/or kind words of encouragement. Several also confided in me privately, that you believed your child is also on the spectrum and because your awareness was raised, you decided to have your child diagnosed.
Sadly, for whatever the reason, the number of children born with autism continues to rise…now 1 in every 68 children. We need, now more than ever, to continue to raise awareness, promote research and create resources for persons and families who are affected by Autism.
As many of you may or may not know, several years ago my youngest son Abel (Spike) was diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD). We learned PDD is a condition that falls under the umbrella of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). I was proud to train for and run last year’s LA Marathon, and raise funds in his in his honor, as well as to raise funds for Polo Buddies...a water polo class for kids on the spectrum.
This year I will be running to raise funds for Rising Above Disabilities (RAD) Camp. RAD Camp is a week-long program that serves adults and children with disabilities such as Down syndrome, cerebral palsy and autism. My son Adam has volunteered as a RAD Camp counselor for the last two summers. He claims having a younger brother on the spectrum really helped him engage and develop a meaningful friendships with the his assigned buddies. He finds the experience to be truly rewarding and he plans to volunteer again next year.
RAD Camp is free for participants and relies on donations to host two week-long camps during the summer. This is where I am again reaching out to my family and friends. Please consider contributing to my Train 4 Autism fund-raising account. All funds raised will go towards RAD Camp which is a 501c3 charitable organization (Tax ID #46-4555223). No amount is too small. Simply click on the link to my fund-raising page and be part of the effort raise awareness and continuing the advances that will improve the lives of those affected by Autism.
For more info on RAD Camp, please go to www.radcamp.org