Only those that have been through it can imagine the devastation when they hear that their loved one has been diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum. Even though it is a devastating diagnosis, it is so much better today than it has been in years past thanks to the support and help from Autism Speaks and programs like Light It Up Blue.
Because more attention is being paid to the matter, people like Joe Steffy, a young adult diagnosed on the Spectrum, has opportunities that just a short time ago would not have been afforded to him. Joe is the proud owner of his own business: Poppin Joe’s Kettle Korn. He is proving that, with the proper help, anyone can do anything!
There are still people out there that believe that just because you are diagnosed with one condition or another that your life is over as many people believe it should be. But kids like Steffy won’t let a little thing like Autism get in his way. This young man should give every supporter of Light It Up Blue and inspiration to continue their support of this great effort!
Joe Steffy recently presented his entrepreneurial accomplishments behind founding Poppin Joe’s Kettle Korn at a series of Autism Speaks Small Business Town Halls. He actually served as a featured presenter.
The Small Business Town Hall meetings were designed to demonstrate to employers that people diagnosed on the Autism Spectrum can be assets to various organizations; that their capabilities can actually draw business to their organizations. At the meetings, young adults with Autism display how they are putting their unique talents and gifts to work. The setting provides a forum to trade ideas amongst small business owners. It is the opportunity of a lifetime for many of the presenters! And, small business owners around the country are actually discovering that there are innovative and productive ways to works with employees on the spectrum.
The fact remains, since so much research and acknowledgment have gone into Autism in the past few years, adults that have been diagnosed don’t have to believe that their lives will be nothing but difficult. In fact, they can have a successful future; they just need a push in the right direction and the support of caring people that understand their plight.
The limitations and expectations that people with Autism face on a day-to-day basis do not have to hold them back! Just look at Joe Steffy. The proof is in the pudding. All we have to do to ensure that Autism Speaks goes forward with their efforts is to support programs like Light It Up Blue!