06 May 2015 - The Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco and the Autism Hearts Foundation (AHF), headed by Erlinda Borromeo, commemorated World Autism Awareness Month last April at the Philippine Center through an exhibit featuring artworks of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The exhibit was opened by Madame Mariza Bensurto at the lobby of the Philippine Center on April 01. The event also served as the celebration of World Autism Awareness Day, which is held annually on April 02.
In his remarks, Deputy Consul General Jaime Ramon T. Ascalon said that the Consulate General was privileged to partner with AHF in 2014 to bring greater awareness about autism and persons with ASD. “Persons with ASD can become valuable members of the community, given the right diagnosis and treatment,” he said. He added that “relatives of persons with ASD can count on a community of supporters, such as the AHF, to encourage and provide moral support.”
Leading up to April 1st, the Consulate General supported the AHF’s efforts to champion their cause by showing videos of the “Light It Up Blue” campaign, a world-wide effort supported by institutions such as the United Nations and many countries. In the campaign, national and popular landmarks and establishments around the globe are lit up in blue. In the past years, the San Francisco City Hall agreed to join the campaign. In the Philippines, AHF has found a supporter in SM Mall of Asia, who lights up the globe fronting the mall during Autism Awareness Day.
As part of its month-long activities to support Autism, Madame Bensurto welcomed sophomore students with ASD from the Abraham Lincoln High School to view the art exhibit at the Consulate on April 22.
Mrs. Borromeo expressed her thanks to the Consulate General for partnering with AHF and sharing efforts to champion their cause in building awareness on autism. The Foundation continues to work with Bantay Bata and ABS-CBN to promote autism awareness not just in the Bay Area and in New York, but also in the Philippines. END