Vietnam Autism Awareness Day seeks to highlight autism spectrum disorder

Sunday, 2018-04-01 15:46:15
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VAAD3 features a range of activities targeting social integration for people with autism in Vietnam. (Illustrative image from VAN fanpage)
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NDO – Around 1,000 people, including nearly 400 people with autism, are participating in the third Vietnam Autism Awareness Day (VAAD3), held in the northern province of Bac Ninh from March 31 to April 1.

The programme is organised by the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA), the Vietnam Federation on Disability (VFD), the Vietnam Autism Network (VAN), the Centre for Creative Initiatives in Health and Population (CCIHP), and the Rubic Collaborative volunteer organisation.

The highlight of the event is the range of sporting activities for people with autism. Autistic children will be able to participate in therapeutic games, swimming, running, and some other games. In addition, MOLISA and VFD jointly organised a workshop on “Autism in ASEAN - Developing laws and policies on detection, intervention, and caring for autistic children in the community," on March 31.

Dang Huynh Mai, VFD President, said that it is necessary to look at the situation of autism in each specific locality to develop reasonable and practical solutions to help affected children with autism to integrate with society and gain access to education, healthcare, and transport.

At the seminar, speakers discussed the current difficulties of families with autistic children and proposed specific solutions and experiences to implement early detection, intervention and care for autistic children in the community. Experts from ASEAN countries also shared their experiences in providing community integration support for autistic people.

VAN is a network gathering parents, families, and individuals with autism who are interested in and have activities related to autism. In its early days, on April 2, 2016, the first VAAD was held in Hanoi, bringing hope to thousands of families with autistic children in Vietnam for a better future regarding integration. The second event took place in 2017 in Ho Chi Minh City, with the participation of celebrities and hundreds of families with autistic children.

Inadequate statistics show that about 1% of Vietnam’s population are affected by autism.