If you know more we could add to the list, please let us know.
October is anti-bullying month, and Marie and Morgan sent us their art and music representing how they feel when they are bullied. Their creations express fear, angst, desolation. Bullying is really, really horrible, even more so when sometimes the bullies are adults who either don’t understand difference or are jealous or have just problems in their lives that they cowardly take out on innocent, vulnerable people. Stand up to real values and say no to bullying! Karma will get back to those who bully and vilify vulnerable people, and as a matter of fact, we even know some concrete cases.
The 10th will also be World Mental Health Day. We are mentioning this because bullying obviously affects mental health, so it is important.
Marie sent us her art a long time ago when we were first looking for contributions and is currently unfortunately sick, so please keep her in your thoughts, particularly this month where we should all be united against bullying.
Slideshow of eight paintings created after being bullied:
In Morgan’s own words: “This was a piece of improvised music that I created with my guitar in GarageBand during a time of desperation. It just poured out, as an expression of deep sadness that needed to be exorcised from my soul. I had always hidden from my past reasonably well, but the demons stemming from abuse and bullying during my childhood and teenage years finally caught up with me, and this recording of a guitar basically crying out in melancholic anguish is the result of reconciling with my past and trying to drain the sadness in order to move forward. It is not one of my professional recordings or an example of my proper songwriting, and it is demo quality, but I figured this recording was appropriate to share for anti-bullying month.”
Thank you, Marie and Morgan.
Today is Autistic Pride Day (it is just after midnight) and we are very proud to announce the release of our book “We Can – We Will (Autistic People Help the World)”. Our contributors have been fantastic in terms of talent, commitment and hard work, and we would like to truly thank them. They have also all been really great to work with, an absolute pleasure.
It is also fantastic that they are all from different countries (a lucky coincidence), as we are proud to be an international organization and to love everyone equally. Love and support know no boundaries. In alphabetical order, our contributors are: Marie Faverio (Australia), Morgan Giosa (USA), Frank Ludwig (Germany/Ireland), and Mickey Mayhew (UK). They have all written great autobiographies, and you can also read their public biographies on the Genius of Autism Wiki site.
Their contributions cover different fields, so there is certainly something for everyone: 144 pages of great art, photography, poetry, music, articles, memoirs, and puzzles. As external links in Adobe pdf files sometimes cause problems on some computers depending on permissions etc., you will have to copy and paste them into your browser (we have not enabled them). The links in the index are fine because they are internal links.
The names of the contributors are in alphabetical order in the index. You will be able to click on their contributions if you are particularly interested in a certain subject or field and of course you can also read all the contributions in the field of your interest first if you so wish. The index is on page 2 if you want to go back to it.
The authors retain the copyright on their work and for this reason the file is protected, that is to say it cannot be edited (of course) and pages can only be printed in low resolution. If you wish to print out something in high resolution or wish to use any of the contributions, please let us know and we will ask the authors for permission, or if you prefer you can also ask them directly.
So, here it is! “We Can – We Will / Autistic People Help the World”
This is the best site for sharing our file that we could find based on our members’ recommendations (we asked some time ago), as it is also used by professionals, companies, etc. We checked the link after logging out of our account and we can confirm that you can both view the file and download it without an account.
Enjoy both the book and Autistic Pride Day. We truly have many reasons to be proud of ourselves!
*Important Note*: As we said before, the book is free to download, but (as you know) the goal of this book is to help the world, so we would like to ask you to do something to improve the world after downloading it, like a random act of kindness or a small donation to a charity of your choice, or anything else you consider appropriate. If you wish to share it, please link to this page and do not upload it anywhere else. Thank you!
Today, on the 1st anniversary of Donna Williams’s passing, we would like to honor three very brave autistic people with the Donna Williams Bravery Award announced last year. Thank you all for the nominations.
First of all, of course, we would like to remember and honor Donna, as this annual award has been created in her honor. She was an extremely brave woman who loved life and fought against her illness until the end. She has also certainly greatly enriched the world with her work, her autism advocacy and her charismatic personality. You will never be forgotten, Donna, and we are sure everybody will agree with us. We invite you to read some of her last blog posts (just before her passing), as well as her husband’s memorial speech, here.
Next we would like to honor (posthumously too) Steve Selpal, who also passed away last year. Steve had a lot in common with Donna. He also fought bravely against cancer. He was also an artist and, like Donna, also interested in oriental philosophy. Some of his last artwork was centered on chakras, an extremely interesting concept. Donna was a Taoist. They both found relief in oriental philosophy and probably also the strength to face and fight against their illness and the challenges of life. We don’t know if Donna and Steve were friends, but they certainly could have been with so much in common.
If you know how to email their families and think that they would be interested in a bravery certificate honoring Donna and Steve, please ask them to email us and we will send them a certificate.
Last but certainly not least we would like to honor Marie Faverio. We have received quite a few nominations for her, including a very detailed one. While we cannot go into too many details here without her authorization, we can only say that we are deeply impressed by the bravery with which she has to face illness and pain on a daily basis without any support and also by the bravery with which she had to face bullies, false friends (who even allied with bullies behind her back because they are jealous of her achievements, even if they were aware of the sad aspects of her life too), and incredibly ignorant doctors who made everything worse and attacked autism and the autism community at large. She also suffered some really severe traumas in her life. Edit: We have been told (after we had written this blog post) that Marie is also interested in oriental philosophy, so it appears that she also shares a lot with Donna and Steve. Keep up your wonderful work, your autism activism and your kind spirit, Marie, and feel free to write if you need a friend or someone to talk to. You are one of the most impressive ladies we have ever met. Oh, you will get your certificate of course (we will copy your manager).
We love you all! You are legends, real heroes!
Awww, I wish I were there! What a beauty! Not surprisingly these photos have won awards, have been used for postcards etc. Thank you so much, Paul, for sending us these photos!
We are excited to let you know that we have established a new annual award in honor of Donna Williams and other brave autistic people like her.
Donna passed away on April 22 this year (2017) after a brave fight against cancer.
We would like to honor other brave autistic people like her every year on April 22 with the “Donna Williams Bravery Award”.
The recipients of this award must be autistic of course, but must not necessarily be in the Autism Hall of Fame. In general this award will be conferred to only one person a year, but the first year (2018) more than one person might be honored (we don’t know for sure yet).
We invite you to send us your suggestions/nominations and/or to read the biographies of our members again.
Thank you, and we hope you are just as excited as we are.
Winners (in alphabetical order):
Marie Faverio (2018)
Carly Fleischmann (2019)
Steve Selpal (2018)
Donna Williams (2018)
Good news for our ladies!
We have been contacted by Sarah, a student who is writing a paper on great women of our time. She has compiled a list of great women of our time based on other lists she has found, including our website/list of amazing autistic ladies.
She said that she was particularly impressed by our ladies (all of them), considering the challenges they have to face in daily life. She has already added a few of our ladies and asked us if we could suggest a few more ladies. We would like to ask you whom you would like to nominate for inclusion on her list.
You can either let us know or contact Sarah directly if you prefer, but you will still have to contact us for her email address, as Sarah prefers not to have her email address published due to spammers.
We think this is exciting!