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7th Annual Autism Awareness Walk
By Carla Pesono
JOPLIN, MO---The event took place at the Leggett and Platt Athletic Center at Missouri Southern State University. More than 400 walkers participated, including parents, community members, and clients. This event is to support Freeman Health System's Leffen Center for autism. All the proceeds go directly to a scholarship fund to assist children's treatment for parents who have financial difficulties. Organizers say one of the goals today was to promote autism acceptance.
Leffen's Center Clinical Director, Kristy Parker, says, "These are individuals in our community that have many talents, many gifts to share with us and we just want to honor them today and make people aware of what they have to contribute to our community."
Parent, Holly Jarman, whose child has autism, says, "It can be very difficult to find resources and to be able to afford those resources so getting involved in something like this is going to help those families that really need that assistance."
Recently, the Center for Disease Control showed that 1 in 68 children in the country has autism. To find out more about this disorder, you can go to the Leffen's Center website: http://www.freemanhealth.com/leffencenterforautism