World Record Row - Autism Acceptance Week

Welcome to Jordan and Isaac's fundraising page for their World Record Indoor Tandem Row during World Autism Acceptance Week (28th March - 3rd April) and World Autism Awareness Day (2nd April). Previously Isaac has broken the world record for the solo male 20-29 longest continual indoor row, read about it here.

Our row dates are 1st-3rd April 2022.

Location of the row if you would like to support us is: Anytime Fitness  Studio Room, The Howard Centre, Unit 54, Howard Centre, Welwyn Garden City AL8 6HA. We will be in the 'studio room' within the gym.
Why National Autistic Society  as the CAUSE
Both Isaac and Jordan chose to raise vital funds for a charity that supports their family members, both of our rowers have a very close family member living with autism.
What is the world record they are trying to break?
They are both looking to row in tandem on an indoor rowing machine (Concept2) continuously for 2 whole days to beat the current duration for the male 20-29 category.
What will my money do?
  • £15 - supports autistic people and their families through an online coronavirus hub
  • £30 - helps with the understanding of autism amongst the general public via public awareness work
  • £60 - supports parents and guardians in finding advice on the Parent Service
  • Support the building of purpose-built autistic centres in areas of deprived autism support for local communities
  • Help build a network of employers to advertise job opportunities for autistic people
  • Support for campaigns like this one: "Mobilisation of 217,828 people behind the campaign to end the scandal of autistic people being inappropriately detained in mental health hospitals."
  • Growing the local branch network of National Autistic Society to further the support and outreach for those with autism
Find our more on what the National Autistic Society has done in the last year in their annual report: 

Where can we follow the event?
Both Jordan and Isaac will be updating on this page as well as their social media accounts on how their row is going. Give them a follow on social media for LIVE updates :)
  • Instagram - @isaac_kenyon, @_jordanwilliams94
  • Facebook - Isaac Kenyon, Jordan Williams
  • Twitter - @kenyon_isaac
  • TikTok - @Isaac Kenyon
Thank you for being part of our campaign in supporting those with autism :)
Some learnings for you about Autism that we bet you didn't know all of them!
Autism is very misunderstood and there are a lot of misconceptions... Here are some facts from Georgia Harper of 10 misconceptions about autism.
1. There’s more to it than meets the eye.
Perhaps due to a media focus on depicting autistic children through the perspective of their neurotypical loved ones, autism is rarely portrayed as anything more than a sum of difficulties with social interaction, misinterpretation of non-verbal cues and, of course, meltdowns. But there are many less immediately visible aspects of the condition, such as differences in sensory processing (many are over-or under-sensitive to sound, textures, brightness and so on), which, if acknowledged, would explain a lot of that so-called “strange” behaviour!
2. We have emotions – even if they’re not always expressed in the way you’d expect.
Differences in non-verbal expression sometimes lead neurotypical people to believe that we don’t experience emotional responses at all – but they’re there, even if you can’t see them. In fact, more recent research proposes that these traits may be due to excess empathy rather than lack of it. Either way, we’re not robots.
3. It’s a LOT more complicated than just “high-functioning” and “low-functioning”.
As a society, we’re finally getting beyond the idea that one person (I’m looking at you, Rain Man) can represent all autistic people. However, this is often replaced by the notion of two polar extremes of autism: high-functioning and low-functioning. This limited understanding often results in some people having their difficulties ignored whilst others have their capabilities ignored. The autistic spectrum is so much more diverse than that; whilst some need more support than others, we all have our own strengths and weaknesses and no two people are the same.
4. Being able to handle something sometimes doesn’t mean we can do it all the time.
Everyone has off-days: changes in health, mood or circumstances lead to changes in our ability to cope, and autistic people are no different. The existence of good days doesn’t mean we’re faking the bad days, and putting all our energy into getting through something overwhelming once doesn’t mean we can do it consistently and still function elsewhere!
5. Autism is part of who we are and should be accepted as such – but that doesn’t mean it’s not a disability.
If I were neurotypical I wouldn’t be me, and I believe people like me should be accepted as autistic rather than trying to “cure” us into different people. The autism acceptance movement is often accused of ignoring the very real difficulties faced by those on the spectrum, but this does not have to be the case. The social model of disability argues that disabled people face barriers due to a bias in the way society is organised towards one ideal of body and brain, rather than anything inherently wrong with the rest of us.
6. Autism is a lifelong condition – so it’s not just for kids.
Media representation of autism is improving, but the focus is still very much on young children. This means that many adults on the spectrum go completely undiagnosed and unsupported, and the problems faced by autistic adults are widely ignored – for example, only 15% are in full-time employment, a statistic which Ambitious About Autism seek to change with the ongoing #EmployAutism campaign.
7. It’s not just for boys, either.
At present, men and boys greatly outnumber women and girls diagnosed with autism, and until fairly recently it was accepted that the condition is simply more common in men. However, that gap is beginning to close as professionals realise that many autistic women are going undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. One explanation is that girls are socialised into masking their autistic traits, leading to a different presentation. In addition, as is the case with many conditions, the initial research into autism focused almost exclusively on males, leading to bias in the diagnostic criteria.
8. Very few autistic people are savants – but our interests don’t have to be productive to be valuable.
It’s a common trope in media – the maths-obsessed prodigy who can reel off a massive list of prime numbers, the socially awkward genius who can remember endless details all the way back to childhood – but at most, only 1 or 2 in 200 people on the spectrum have an extraordinary talent to this degree. An intense degree of interest or passion for something often comes with autism, and many do make a career out of pursuing those interests, but even where this isn’t possible, they can still be invaluable in making friends and coping with the challenges of being autistic in a neurotypical world.
9. We don’t know what causes autism – but it isn’t vaccines.
In 1998, a research paper linked autism to the MMR vaccine; that study has been discredited for years since, but the idea persists, resulting in reduced vaccination rates and various measles outbreaks in recent years. The “vaccines cause autism” myth is dangerous – measles can kill – and even if it were true, surely it’s better to be autistic than to be dead from a preventable disease?
10. It’s not all doom and gloom!
Autism comes with its difficulties but can also bring advantages – particularly regarding attention to detail, organisation and simply bringing a different perspective to the table. We’ve got a long way to go, but perceptions are changing, and society is coming to realise what autistic people have to offer if given the opportunity to thrive.

Fundraising team: Tandem Rowers (2)

Isaac Kenyon
Raised £325 from 13 donations
Jordan Williams
Team member
Raised £340 from 21 donations

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