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Calls to Action

Benjamin and his Lacrosse Team Help Shine a Light on Autism 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012 View Comments

My name is Benjamin Sandler. I am currently finishing the year as an eighth grade student at Fox lane Middle School. I am a member of the Fox Lane Middle School Autism Speaks Club. As well as being a member of the Autism Speaks Club, I also help out at the CARES program. CARES is a place for children with special needs to participate in activities that they might not be able to do regularly such as, cooking, art, and sports.  I am also the president of Pride in Purple, which is an anti bullying club. I also participate in CATCH club, which is a discussion club. In addition to those clubs I am a captain of the lacrosse team. I try to make the most out of school as I can.

Dr. Peter Faustino is a school psychologist at Fox Lane Middle School. He is also very active with autism at our school. Dr. Faustino is the head of the Autism Speaks Club at the middle school. He is also the president of NYSAP (New York State Association of Psychologists). He is a very kind man who cares a lot about autism and the people who are affected by it.

Mr. Brett Yarris is a one to one aid in the SAIL class (Structured Alternatives to Independent Learning). He is the Football and Lacrosse coach at Fox Lane. He is the assistant Administrator of the Autism Speaks Club as well. He is a very inspirational coach and person because he inspires his team to be not good but great citizens. He also has a very positive effect on his students.

The three of us are working together to educate and spread autism awareness as well as shed some light on what we are doing here in our community of Bedford, Mount Kisco, and Pound Ridge. That is the purpose of this blog.

The Autism Speaks Club spreads awareness throughout the school about autism. We do this by creating posters and lessons for students. The club also raises money. We do this by having bake sales and by taking donations. This year we have raised over 5000 dollars! We accomplish all of this by meeting every week and working hard on Mondays after school.

The lacrosse team was very active with autism this year.  All season our coach encouraged us to be active in our communities and to take action with worthy causes. We showed our support by wearing blue on specific days and by going to the Westchester-Fairfield walk for autism. At the walk we got there an hour and a half early to help set up. Autism means a lot to our team, we didn’t just go to the walk because our coach told us, we didn’t have to go. We went because autism is something that we care about.

The walk itself was amazing. It was nothing like anything like I have ever experienced before. I arrived at 7:20 and immediately went to work by setting up tables then chairs, and then merchandise. Our team all helped set up for the walk.  We helped out with whatever we could whether it be setting up, running the bouncy castle, or even directing the walkers. One person who was there is a student named John. John loves sports so he was extremely happy when he found out that they had a tent with the 2009 World Series trophy. My favorite part of the day was directing the walkers because I got to work with Alex a kid from my school who has autism. Alex and I directed the walkers and took videos of the walkers. The day was so much fun and it was very rewarding.



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The Autism Speaks blog features opinions from people throughout the autism community. Each blog represents the point of view of the author and does not necessarily reflect Autism Speaks' beliefs or point of view.