My son Imaan was 3 years old when he was diagnosed with Autism even though we have had our suspicions when he was 1 years old and his development was slow.
As you can imagine, we were totally devastated and the doctors didn't help much when they told us that autism was a life long condition and we would have to live with it. We went through periods of denial, self-pity, and sadness and finally, acceptance. Fortunately, we are not the type to mop around and just accept what so called "experts" have to say. We did our own research and found out about various alternative therapies.
Among the various things we did, the one that made the maximum difference was the Son-Rise programme. Unlike other therapies, the Son-Rise programme is home based and is parent-directed where parents are seen as the child’s best resource unlike other therapies (such as ABA). After depending around a year on the services provided (or not) by the Government here, we didn't see any difference. However, since we started the Son-Rise programme, he has been toilet trained, improved his diet and went from no speech to speaking sentences.
Unfortunately, the Son-Rise programme and theother therapies are not covered by the NHS and we had to literally fork out thousands from our own pocket that we are almost bankrupt now.
We estimate that it will cost us around £20,000 to do a full time Son-Rise programme at home. This cost does not include his special diet, supplements and cost of private doctor consultations and tests. However, my son is the priority and if he loses his diagnosis of Autism and is able to go to a mainstream school, socialise and have friends like all other neurotypical kids, it would be worth it.
Anyway, a lot of amazing people are helping us fundraise for our son. One of them is my sister-in-law, Eju, who is running two races in support of my son.
The first one will be the Wimbledon Audi 10K race this Sunday on the 17th Oct 2010 at 9:00am. Here's the location: Wimbledon Rugby Club, Beverley Meads, Barham Road, Copse Hill, Wimbledon, SW20 0ET
Please come along to support and/ or donate. For more information visit the fundraising page on the special blog that documents our journey with our son.