The University of Southern Mississippi is set to take part in recognizing April as Autism Awareness Month by hosting Rock for Autism.
Thursday, April 10, TEAAM USM, an autism advocacy group at Southern Miss, will host their annual fundraiser to benefit those with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). According to Jamie Jelinski, who has served as the vice president of TEAAM USM for two years, the event was started by the organization’s first president, Marie Holowach.
“She is a fantastic leader and a wonderful example of someone who did not let her Autism Spectrum Disorder get in the way of accomplishing amazing things,” Jelinski said.
According to Anthony Woods, who is serving as TEAAM USM’s current president, Holowach worked for many years as a volunteer at Kamp Kaleidoscope, a camp that is designed for individuals with autism and located at Center Ridge Outpost in Smith County, Miss. As a result of her work with the camp, Holowach noticed the impact this camp had on the children who were involved in it, and she decided to establish TEAAM USM in order to help more young children with autism gain the opportunity to attend Kamp Kaleidoscope.
Jelinksi strongly encourages everyone in the community to become involved with this event. Jelinksi said the goal of Rock for Autism is to not only raise enough funds to send more children to the camp, but also to make young men and women more aware of ASD.
TEAAM USM will attempt to raise approximately $4,500 to send more young boys and girls with the disorder to the camp.
According to their blog, www.usmteaam.blogspot.com, rocking chairs will be placed in the Union, where participants will compete to see who can continue rocking for the longest period of time. The event is set to take place from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m.