COLUMBUS, Ga. — It’s estimated there are 3,000 to 3,500 kids in the Chattahoochee Valley area living with Autism Spectrum Disorder and about 650 on Fort Benning alone.
Caring for an Autistic child can be costly, and advocates would probably agree that laws have yet to catch up with the needs of families.
Diane Pope is the President of the Autism Hope Center and Support Group. The center provides resources and information for families because this is not easy. Oftentimes Pope says, parents are faced with insurance companies not paying for enough therapy for the children, or the co-pays are too high. She wants lawmakers to see that early intervention is not only good for the children, but for the country.
“If they don’t help them when they’re young get that early intervention, then someone’s got to take care of those kids for life and that can be 50 to 80 thousand dollars a year forever,” said Pope.
On Saturday, April 22, the Autism Hope Center will celebrate its 4th Annual Autism Awareness Resource Fair and Fun Day from 10 am until 1 pm at Pop Austin Recreation Center at 1331 Alexander Street in Columbus. Parents can learn about Home and Community services, early intervention resources, therapy centers, ABA and much more.
If you have an autistic child, you can reach the Autism Hope Center at (706) 604-6333.