Jeff and Amy have learned to embrace and accept Carson for who he is and now they are on a mission to change the narrative surrounding the diagnosis. For the 1 in 68 children diagnosed with the condition, autism awareness is not enough. In order for autistic individuals to thrive and achieve their potential in society, we need to strive for autism acceptance. Awareness is only the first step.
“You don’t get invited to birthday parties. You don’t get invited to be a part of groups.We’ve lost friends, close friends, that their typical world we don’t fit into.”- Jeff belles
Since Carson's diagnosis, the Belles have faced instances, of rejection and exclusion. From not getting invited to birthday parties, to the judgmental glances of strangers, the need for autism acceptance in our communities is clear.
“I’ve been in a store where Carson was melting down and pounding me on the back … and a lady said to me, ‘sir, sir, you should give him a good smack,’” And I asked Her (sarcastically) if it was a new cure for autism.”- Jeff belles
meet the cause
The Belles have recently partnered with Kulture City, a nonprofit organization, with the mission of creating a world where all individuals with autism and their families can be accepted and treated equally. Together, they started a local chapter of the national nonprofit in Ohio. Last month, Kulture city unveiled its national autism acceptance campaign, Love Without Words.
"The Love without Words campaign was created to remind us
that you don't need words to express love. We express love
with our actions, our deeds, and in many other ways. Autism
or not, we are all one family. We all express love without
words." - Kulture city
The goal of the Love Without Words campaign is to shift the autism narrative, from autism awareness, to autism acceptance. It is first large-scale global campaign ever launched, with a positive spin on autism and will help create a culture of inclusion and acceptance.