Bob and Suzanne Wright thought their grandson Christian was a normal – perhaps even precocious – little boy. But around the age of 16 months, Christian’s behavior began to change. He was talking less and exhibiting unusual behaviors such as running in circles and flapping his arms. When Christian was diagnosed with autism, the Wrights and their daughter were Frustrated by the lack of information about the disorder.
“Basically they said ‘Goodbye and good luck’,” said Suzanne Wright.
This experience prompted the Wrights to start Autism Speaks, an advocacy organization. “We were pretty informed people and we had no idea what they were talking about and we had nowhere to go,” Said Suzanne. “I just couldn’t believe this population and families were without any help and without any voice, so we decided that we were going to give them a voice and a very loud one, Autism Speaks.”
“Our mission is to create awareness and to get scientific and medical research on autism and to also provide treatments…and the services needed,” Bob added.
Since its founding in 2005, Autism Speaks has committed over $180 million to research and developing innovative resources for families and succeeded in having the United Nations designate April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day.
Beginning July 15, you can watch Sounding The Alarm in its entirety on Netflix, iTunes and Amazon Prime.
Watch an extended interview with the Wrights below: