If you didn’t already know, April is Autism Awareness Month and I can’t think of a better way to spread awareness then by hosting an autism event! This past month, as an events intern, I was given the opportunity to give back to the autism community by assisting Ginger and Amy in executing not one event, but two extraordinary fundraising autism events: Manhattan Children’s Center Seeds of Hope Gala and Autism Science Foundation’s 3rd Annual Day of Learning. Each event was able to fundraise and bring awareness of autism to the local community. These autism events weren’t just a learning experience for their +600 combined guests, but for me as well.
When Ginger informed me that I would be assisting with autism events I was very excited! What I learned and witnessed will forever be imbedded in my head and in my heart. I never realized how often I take the little things for granted. After learning more and more about autism as well as the goals of the Manhattan Childrens Center and Autism Science Foundation, all I wanted to do was help. I never realized how hard it must be for a child with autism to transition into society especially from different levels of maturity and growth. I also never realized that without awareness there would be no fundraising, research or treatment. Thanks to both MCC’s and ASF’s endeavors, the autism community is truly benefiting.
On April 12th I had the privilege on working side by side with Ginger and Amy on executing this year’s Manhattan Childrens Center Seeds of Hope Gala. Their fundraiser was truly breathtaking! MCC invited sponsors, the school staff and parents/families of their students. The gala came alive! They were selling artwork that the children created, had a silent auction as well as a live auction, a photo booth, guest speakers and awards. For entertainment they not only had a band but they had some of the students perform. Honestly, I don’t think you could pay me enough to perform in front of all those people. All of these aspects showed how much MCC truly cares about their students and their well-being. They encourage them to go above and beyond and are with them every step of the way. Courage filled the room that night. It was incredible to see all these small but vital things come together to create such a successful autism event.
On April 14th I had the privilege to assist Ginger and Amy with yet another fundraising event for the autism community: Autism Science Foundation’s 3rd Day of Learning. I kid you not, when that conference was over I felt so involved, so one with the community, that I almost cried. I was truly moved by all the speakers and really enjoyed learning about the topics like “Are Females Protected from Autism?” “Technologies Transforming Teaching and Learning in Autism Classrooms” and “Understanding and Treating Anxiety in Autism.” I really wished schools, especially colleges, had conferences or seminars like this to help educate the public. It’s crazy how far we have come in autism research! Besides being moved by the topics, I really admired how Events with Ginger & Co. tried to make the Day of Learning conference bright and fun. We utilized their colorful logo in their name tags and the centerpieces had various colored daisies in test tubes and Erlenmeyer flasks.
This April of autism events has been full of the most educational and eye-opening experiences for me. It made me realize a lot about myself, especially my strengths and weakness, the type of person I want to be, the things I want to change or improve in the community and more. Before I started my internship with Events with Ginger & Co. I wasn’t sure what avenue I wanted to take part in or even if event planning was the right career for me. After spending four months with Ginger and Amy, I can say that I have a better grasp on what I want for my future as an event planner. Thanks to the support, guidance and constant education from Events with Ginger & Co. I have found a place and purpose in the world where I can utilize my talents. I can’t wait to see where I am this time next year!