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Gardner Speaks On Importance Of Autism Awareness

2 April 2024

Club News

Gardner Speaks On Importance Of Autism Awareness

2 April 2024

With 2 April being World Autism Awareness Day, midfielder Dan Gardner speaks about day-to-day life with his eight-year-old autistic son, Bailey.

"My son, Bailey, was around five months old my partner started noticing signs of Autism

“His eating, sleeping, flapping, eye contact were all indicators”

"I didn't know anything about autism at the time, like a lot of people, But my partner knew a lot about it.

“Children can't be diagnosed until they are two years old, but we started the process early with the doctor, and then we went through all the processes we needed to go through to get the diagnosis.

"But it's a massive fight. Even after he was diagnosed with autism, my partner Tennille fought and fought to get the outcome that we wanted and he got the care that he needed.

"Bailey's severely autistic so he's in a specially designed school, and it's great for him, but he's eight now, so he'll be moving to a new location next term, which we're looking forward to.

Founded in 2008, World Autism Awareness Day has now been running for 16 years and has played a vital role in spreading awareness of the struggles and obstacles autistic individuals face.

"More information is getting out there and helping people know what it's about, and Autism Awareness Week is huge for raising awareness."

"Raising awareness is a massive part of my life.

“I've spoken to the manager (Micky Mellon) about it because he does a lot with autistic children and children with ADHD.

“Having him to talk to is great because he’s so involved with children like Bailey.

"We've got a banner made for the Rochdale game on Saturday that we'll have our picture taken with and display it before the game."

For more information on Autism, click here.

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