World Autism Awareness Day was declared by the United Nations General Assembly eight years ago to draw attention to the urgent needs of people with autism around the world. For thousands of people all over the world, who have autism, awareness makes a lifetime of difference.
In the frames of World Autism Awareness Month, VivaCell-MTS and “International Child Development Center” have organized an exhibition in the lobby of VivaCell-MTS headquarters featuring 28 paintings by children with autism presenting their perception of the world.
Since September 2006, children with autism have benefited from a variety of services provided at the International Child Development Center. Unfortunately, during these 10 years the number of children having problems with development, learning and socialization has increased.
The cooperation of the International Child Development Center with VivaCell-MTS started in 2007. Attaching great importance to the communication problem of children with autism, the Company became the main supporter of children attending the center.
During 2007-2016 VivaCell-MTS has allocated AMD 151 million to the International Child Development Center that provides individual, intensive educational treatment to children with autism based on principles of Applied Behavioral Analysis. Thirty-seven children per year participate in the program owing to VivaCell-MTS support.
Progress and positive changes are observed in terms of both social skills and relationships with peers. The trust towards the Center and the comfort level of the children has also increased. The treatment has resulted in improved learning skills and higher transition rates to inclusive schools.
“There are no insoluble problems. To reach the desired result, one simply needs to have complete information on the matter and be persistent in taking action. These children communicate with the world in their own language. The paintings presented on the exhibition are their means of expressing themselves and their perception of the world. The specialists of the center have reached considerable progress in the treatment of these children: they have improved behavior and mental skills, learn to integrate into the society, and are willing to make friends. Some of the children have already started attending secondary schools. This is an important achievement for us. With this project we want to reject indifference translating the message that communication lies at the heart of everything,” said VivaCell-MTS General Manager Ralph Yirikian.
“We consider our staff, children attending the center, parents and the community as partners in fulfilling the challenges of our mission. We provide a favourable atmosphere for learning and growth with the deep understanding that all children are individuals and must be approached with kind and respectful appreciation for their individuality,” said Founder of ICDC Ira Paul Heilveil.
Autism is a global health crisis that knows no borders: it does not discriminate people because of their nationality, ethnicity or social status. It is high time that the world begins to recognize the scope of this problem and acts internationally and locally to improve the lifestyle of the growing number of individuals and families affected by this devastating disorder.
Now autism is recognized as one of the most common developmental disorders affecting children.