Features include: Martial Arts and Autism • Striving for Disability Equity • Special Celebrations • Advocating for Community Inclusion • A Literary Hero for All Abilities • Holiday Travel • Dear Spectrums Readers – Annual Appeal • From Surviving to Thriving • Educational Toy Guide – Great Expectations • Holidays and Breaks in Routine • Blackbelts for Butterflies • Introduction to Developmental Disabilities Services • Provider Partner Directory • Autism Empowerment Events
by Karen Krejcha
This holiday season, Autism Empowerment is thankful for you – the diverse members, advocates and allies of the autism community. Although we are each traveling on a unique journey, it does not have to be on an isolated road. There are fellow travelers willing to share their stories and lend wisdom and support. Today, let your pit stop be with Spectrums Magazine as you refuel for the journey ahead.
I recently had the privilege of serving as Master of Ceremonies for the 2016 Candidates Forum on Disabilities in Southwest Washington. It was there that I met guest speaker, Ivanova Smith, an autistic disability-rights advocate from Washington who wrote a passionate feature about the importance of community inclusion for this issue’s Stories from the Spectrum series.
This Winter issue of Spectrums brings a diverse range of educational, entertaining and empowering pieces that highlight and celebrate growth in our community. You’ll find articles and interviews from self-advocates, local authors, grassroots groups and allied health organizations. You’ll discover help for the holidays – whether it be changes in routine, tips for travel or managing holiday expectations.
One of the more touching pieces in this issue features the powerful butterfly effect of Blackbelts for Butterflies. It ties in with our cover story about Martial Arts and Autism. Be sure to read both!
We believe that all people in the autism community deserve a life free of stigma and full of opportunity for education, employment, relationships and personal growth. We invite you to join us as we positively change the world. Be a beautiful butterfly and spread your wings for positive change.
Thank you for your support! If you believe that Spectrums Magazine has added value to your life and the autism community, we kindly ask you to consider a tax-deductible donation to Autism Empowerment today. You can use the green donate button below, look for a remittance envelope in the current issue of Spectrums or visit www.autismempowerment.org/donate.
Executive Director & Co-Founder, Autism Empowerment
Editor: Spectrums Magazine
(You can also find this article on page 4 of the Winter 2016 issue of Spectrums Magazine.)