ISLAMABAD – Understanding the need for awareness about autism, the students of Developmental Psychopathology MSc-III at National Institute of Psychology (NIP), Quaid-i-Azam University, grasped the opportunity and making the best of their position held an event at their department on Monday.

The event had a dual purpose including spreading awareness about autism as a prevalent disorder in our country through a seminar presentation and distributing brochures that carried detailed information about the disorder. And to raise funds to be delivered to the institutes that work with the Autistic children.

The theme followed the Blue colour of World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) this year. The event aimed to start a ripple effect concerning the awareness on the issue and that a small contribution could be made by the students of NIP as responsible Psychologists.

To attract the fellow students and teachers from other departments as well, stalls of homemade bakery items, biryani and chat, Mehndi stall and a personality assessment stall were set up by the students. Those who came to buy things off the stalls were educated about the disorder and the significance of the event. They were also advised to spread the word and tell their family and friends about the issue.

The visiting students were informed that the World Autism Day was officially adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2007 and since then it is officially celebrated all over the world on April 2. The WAAD aims to support and work with the community to develop the understanding of Autism. Autism is a Pervasive Developmental Disorder and the diagnosed children show clear symptoms before the age of three years.

More commonly diagnosed in boys than girls, autism affects a child’s communication, socialisation and thought processing. Early detection and intervention increases the prospects of a relatively better functioning in his environment, which increases the need that word about it should be spread. The community is only slightly, if at all, aware about this condition and often times the child’s behaviour is misunderstood.