April is Autism Awareness Month! We are keeping busy this month by spreading the word about existing initiatives and resources while working on new projects too. This month, we are especially focusing on peer acceptance, sibling support, and empowering the community through information. Join us!

We are already on our way to meeting our goals for our annual National Autism Awareness Month Campaign:

  • Educate youth about their peers with autism.
  • Empower the autism community with information resources.
  • Support autism siblings with resources for kids, teens, and parents.
  • Support adults in the autism community through OAR’s Hire Autism Initiative.
  • Raise money for new research and resources.

We still need your help to make it to the finish line. Here are some suggestions for how you can help during and beyond Autism Awareness Month.

Goal 1: Educate Youth About Their Peers with Autism

OAR provides the tools needed to explain what autism means in a friendly and age-appropriate way. This year, OAR aims to impact 9,000 students through the Kit for Kids program and Autism Tuned In with the “What’s Up with Nick?” story.

How you can help: Start an autism peer education program

  • and start an autism peer education initiative

Goal 2: Empower the Autism Community with Information Resources

OAR aims to accomplish this by sending 5,500 information guides to communities across the nation. These valuable resources help parents, educators, professionals, and self-advocates answer their immediate questions related to safety, transitions, research, professional development training, and more.

How you can help: Equip people in your community with these informative resources

  • Volunteer as an Autism Materials Distributor to share our resources with local support groups, families, schools, organizations, medical facilities, or first responders
  • Order printed copies online or download resources online. If you want to share bulk copies at your next local event, contact us at

Goal 3: Support Autism Siblings with Resources for Kids, Teens, and Parents

OAR aims to distribute 1,800 sibling guides to families and sibling workshops. Written by siblings of autism for siblings of autism, OAR’s three siblings workbooks offer guidance to families on how to productively address conflicts that often arise in sibling relationships, including fairness, meltdowns, inequality with attention, and more.

How you can help: Pass these guides to parents and siblings

  • Order up to two copies of each of OAR’s free guides through our online store. Contact  with the subject line “Siblings Guides” for bulk orders to share at upcoming local events
  •  Share these resources at sibshops, parent groups, or anyone else who may need them

Goal 4: Support Adults with Autism Through OAR’s Hire Autism Initiative

OAR’s employment initiative, Hire Autism, will continue its initial demonstration in Northern Virginia during April. Hire Autism helps applicants access autism-friendly employers, a jobs board, and resources to assist in their job search.

Beyond that, OAR will continue to recruit additional employers and Hire Autism advocates and begin its outreach to prospective partners within the autism community in preparation for phased national expansion of the program later this year.

How you can help: Spread the word about Hire Autism and contribute your expertise

  • Contact to suggest new employers in Northern Virginia
  •  Spread the word about Hire Autism on social media

Goal 5: Raise Money for New Research and Resources

OAR’s goal is to raise over $100,000 during the month of April through the RUN FOR AUTISM program. OAR will be continuing to recruit RUN FOR AUTISM teams for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon, Marine Corps Marathon, TCS New York City Marathon, and multiple triathlon events with a goal of having over 400 athletes signed up for a 2018 RUN FOR AUTISM race by the end of April.

How you can help: Run a race and fundraise for autism

  • Join the RUN FOR AUTISM at one of the events listed above or another featured event and guarantee your entry to a number of world-class races and triathlons
  • Sign up for OAR’s DIY – Athletic Events program. Pick any race – a neighborhood 5K, the state’s big marathon, a local triathlon, or something in between!

Share Your Photos

We want to know how you are participating in National Autism Awareness Month. Email your stories and pictures to or share them on OAR’s Facebook page. OAR is looking for both candid and posed photos of parents, self-advocates, children of all ages, siblings, grandparents, friends, and teachers. If it’s a photo you like and are willing to share, please send it in. Be sure to provide written permission for OAR’s use of the photos you submit.