Ethan - Participant, Ausome Ottawa
No one should be excluded from sports. But for kids with autism, playing sports isn’t always easy. Sometimes, community programs are not designed to meet the needs of kids with autism or financially stressed families just can’t afford to enroll, after they have paid for their child’s therapies. According to Ausome, Physical literacy is often an area where kids can use support. Ausome runs programs specifically geared towards helping children increase their physical literacy to help them feel more comfortable playing both in the playground and on the sports field.
Ethan arrived at his first basketball session with extreme hesitation. He was unsure if he would fit in, if anyone would notice him or if he was good enough to play. He decided the best choice for him was to sit quietly on the sidelines - gym class at school was challenging with the other kids and he assumed it would be the same. Ausome staff members wouldn’t force him to participate, instead they would sit with him, discuss his interests and show him some fancy basketball moves every now and then. They offered him the ball, if he wanted to take it and pass to them he could, if he didn’t that was okay too. They were moving at Ethan’s pace. By the fourth week, Ethan had moved off the bench into the game.
“Ausome is helping to instill the importance/value of physical activity and a healthy lifestyle. Ausome is not only giving our child an opportunity to try sports, they have given him a place where he can be himself and most of all feel accepted and loved. He remembers every single volunteer (by name) that has worked with him, and he truly loves the Ausome staff members. Our family is profoundly grateful.” - Ausome Parent
Learn more about Ausome at https://ausomeottawa.com