April is Autism Awareness Month and Miami-Dade County is continuing its efforts to raise awareness with events and programs happening throughout the month.
Several County departments have ongoing programs for people on the autism spectrum.
Miami International Airport and the University of Miami-Nova Southeastern Center for Autism and Related Disabilities (CARD) opened MIA’s Multi-Sensory Room, a quiet area for young passengers with cognitive or developmental disabilities such as autism that provides a relaxing environment during the travel experience.
In addition, the Miami-Dade Police Department is among the agencies participating in Autism Awareness Month through several fundraisers. Autism patches and awareness challenge coins are being sold to benefit the Police Officers Assistance Trust. Look out for officers wearing a special autism awareness badge.
Miami-Dade Parks dedicated the Super Heroes Playground at Tamiami Park. The playground offers equipment for children with autism including an adventure crawl tube, play panels, play berm, a motion play spinner, shade and flowering trees, ADA accessible walkway and benches.
Parks is also offering S.T.A.R.S Skills Training for Autism Recreational Sports for individuals ages 6-19 with autism. Session runs October through May. Saturdays 10 a.m. - 11 a.m. (ages 6-12) and 11 a.m. – noon (ages 13-19). Cost $40 for eight group sessions plus $12 annual registration fee.
- Tamiami Park 305-222-2128 or ArleneB@miamidade.gov.
- Ojus Park 305-935-4588 or email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Department of Cultural Affairs supports inclusive arts and sponsors many sensory-friendly events. Miami-Dade County libraries also have many programs, books and related resources available. The Miami-Dade Parks department also has several ongoing programs.