The Challenge – Muay Thai (Kickboxing) competition
Hi dads and moms, would-be dads and moms and all fellow planetarians, I will be competing in a Muay thai kick boxing event organised by Dynamite Muay Thai Gym, Melbourne, early next year to spread awareness on the critical importance of “EARLY DIAGNOSIS AND EARLY INTERVENTION IN AUTISM”. The challenge involves 8 weeks of intense training, diet management, weigh-in and finally the bout on Feb 25th. Crazy as it sounds and having done nothing like this before, I am extremely nervous getting in to the ring for the first time. However, the cause is what matters and if I can improve or save the life of at least one child through this awareness campaign, then purpose of this challenge is served.
The Cause - Awareness of EARLY DIAGNOSIS AND EARLY INTERVENTION in AUTISM
It is important to diagnose Autism and start intervention therapies at the earliest because research has proved that a child with autism will then have a greater chance of becoming independent and meet their full potential (as compared to their peers who haven’t received early diagnosis/intervention). The reason is scientifically simple – Neuroplasticity of the brain. The human brain is most open to change during the first couple of years of child’s development. So if diagnosed early and provided intervention via therapies (like Speech therapy, Occupational therapy, ESDM, ABA etc to name a few) during this most plastic phase, the young child’s brain can be moulded and directed towards an optimal developmental path.
Click here to learn more about early intervention.
Why I’m doing this
I was shocked and surprised at the same time, when I came to know that in spite of all the current awareness around Autism, a good percentage of little ones are still diagnosed quite late and so miss out on a small window of opportunity to a life lived at their full potential. There is a need for greater awareness about the importance of early diagnosis and intervention and hence I invite you all to be part of this greater cause by spreading awareness and changing lives.
The Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre (OTARC) at La Trobe University, Bundoora has been playing a significant role in Autism research and educating parents as well as Maternal Child Health nurses in identifying early signs of Autism as soon as it manifests in children so they can be referred for further evaluation and diagnosis. La Trobe University also runs an Autism-specific child care centre which has helped kids on the spectrum to access interventions at child care settings at no extra cost. All donations collected will go directly to support research at OTARC (via the La Trobe University donation portal).
To learn more about OTARC’s research,
Click here to learn more about OTARC's research
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