Autism Matters- Make a Difference!
Happy Saturday! Today I’m sharing something near and dear to my heart, and I would love for you to help me make a difference. I’ve teamed up with other Stampin’ Up! Demonstrators to Stamp Out Autism. Today we have a blog hop dedicated to Autism Awareness. Our hope is two-fold- educate our viewers on autism, and raise funds to help support programs for families impacted by Autism. You will find all of the links for this blog hop at the end of my post. The bonus for crafters will be the beautiful artwork shared by demonstrators.
I’ve started my post over a dozen times trying to speak from my heart. The truth is, Autism had never impacted my life until a year and a half ago. I had no idea of the effects that Autism has on families. So why would I start this post over a dozen times? I believe in my heart; I still lack the knowledge about Autism.
Meet Sarah & Grace
A year and a half ago my family was blessed when we met Sarah and her family. They had been a part of our church and eventually joined our Missional Community. As time went on and Sarah and I became closer friends I was able to learn more about their daughter Grace who has Autism and the impacts it had on her family. Because of my lack of knowledge and understanding, it was eye opening. I’m grateful Sarah shared her story with me, the friendship we have formed as well as the opportunity to learn more about Autism and the many ways in which we can help other families with Autistic children.
Make a Difference
Believe it or not, in this crazy busy world we can assist in the smallest of ways. For instance, our faith family came together and created a special needs room for kids to attend during worship. Our special needs class allows parents to sit together in church and enjoy worship, knowing their children are in good hands. Not only did we develop a nice special needs class on Sunday mornings, but another missional community developed a program for special needs parents to have a day/night out. Being a caregiver to anyone can be exhausting, and this night out gives parents a time to be together and relax. It gives our faith family a time to love and enjoy these amazing kids. These families need our love and support.
Faith & Love
Sarah has enormous faith, and today my card is dedicated to her and Grace. Although she faces days of uncertainty, her faith is strong. Even on the hardest days with Grace, when Autism has so many unknowns, she still has faith and hope. I’m in awe of her steadfast faith, hope, and love. My days do not hold that many unknowns, and uncertainties. She consistently teaches me not just about autism, but how to continue to have faith, hope, and love.
What Makes My Heart Happy
One more thing, I can’t help but tell you one of my favorite things about Grace. She loves her iPad, and she’s wicked smart using it. She loves to FaceTime, and we are grateful to be on her contact list. I love when she FaceTimes me out of the blue. As soon as I answer her call, I see her bright smiling face. When she hears my voice, she smiles. “Hi, Mrs. Kimberly!” <insert 1000 hearts>
We love this family so much, and I love that Sarah has given my family the opportunity to learn more about Autism by letting us become part of their family. I’m so grateful our lives crossed paths.
How can YOU help?
Maybe you are like me and had no idea how Autism impacts families? If it weren’t for Sarah, I wouldn’t have known. Your donation to the Autism Speaks Organization can help fund programs and support families like Sarah’s. It’s a BIG deal. Need more information on this organization? Click HERE to read.
I’ve set up a donation link below for the Autism Speaks Organization. Just click the button to donate. For every person that donates $25, I will be sending this handmade card as a thank you. Seriously, I can’t thank you enough!!!
Before You Go- Did You Know?
- Autism is the fastest growing disability among children in the US
- There is no blood test, no scan, and no image that can detect autism. Diagnosis relies on behavioral observation and screening.
- Approximately 67 million people worldwide are affected by autism
Learn More and Be Inspired!
Learn more about Autism from the rest of the crew on this blog hop. You will also enjoy beautiful hand stamped artwork. Just click through the list below to learn and be inspired.
1- Kimberly Van Diepen – YOU ARE HERE!
3- Lee Conrey
6- Susan Best
7- Louise Sharp
10- Tammy Fite
11- Billie Moan
12- Monika Davis
Ribbon of Courage
You might be wondering where this fun new stamp set came from.
Ribbon of Courage is in the new 2017-2018 Annual Catalog from Stampin’ Up! This set of 9 rubber images arrives in both wood and clear mount. The beautiful fonts, greetings, and beautiful ribbons will be the perfect addition to any cause. The best part about this stamp set is the matching Support Ribbon Framelits that will also be available.
Imagine the possibilities with this beautiful stamp set!!