World Autism Awareness Day is observed on April 02 every year to spread information about Autism Spectrum Disorder and help the global ASD population lead a healthy social life. This year the theme of the Day is Assistive Technologies, Active Participation. The theme is derived keeping in mind that technology plays an integral role in the development of people with any form of disability including autism.
Autism is a brain disorder that typically affects a person’s ability to communicate with others. It generally begins in childhood and last through adulthood. Autism Day highlights the need to help and improve the quality of life of those with autism so that they can lead full and meaningful lives as an integral part of society.
This year’s observance underscores the importance of affordable assistive technologies to support people with autism to live independent lives and, indeed, to exercise their basic human rights.
According to the World Health Organisation one out of every 160 children is living with autism. However, there is a lack of awareness about this disorder on a whole. People living with ASD are prone to problems relating to communication and social interaction. These issues can be tackled successfully if ASD is detected at a young age and thereof managed-well. Through WAAD, United Nations aims to raise awareness about ASD. It aims to help people detect the signs of autism in children at an early age and to fight the discrimination faced by people on the spectrum.