Claremore Firefighters Hold Fundraiser Ahead Of Autism Awareness Month

April is Autism Awareness Month and a group of firefighters is working to get the word out.

Tuesday, March 14th 2023, 6:09 am



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April is Autism Awareness Month and a group of firefighters is working to get the word out.

Claremore Firefighters Local 1077 is selling T-shirts and donating all of the proceeds to Claremore Public Schools' Special Education program. The Claremore Fire Department will also be wearing the shirts throughout the month of April to spread the word about autism.

Jake Graham is a Claremore firefighter, member of the Local 1077, and father to a five-year-old boy with autism. He said oftentimes people do not know what autism looks like, so families, like his own, will shy away from going out in public.

"My son may hear a baby screaming and try to mimic that, so we have people look at us at restaurants like your kid is being loud and disruptive when really he just has autism and that is his way of vocalizing," Graham continued saying, "I think it is just about accepting people for who they are and just making sure you understand what autism is. There are plenty of different ways that it can look and not every case is going to be the same."

He hopes the funds raised from the T-shirt sales will help create a better learning environment for autistic kids in school.

"If we raise enough they can buy iPads to help kids talk, maybe set up sensory rooms so if a kid is having a sensory issue they can go in this room, they can be in a low light area with no noise, they can kind of calm down, decompress, and get back on their normal day to day schedule," Graham added.

The shirts come in six different colors and cost $20. To place an order, go online Click Here and choose either pick up or tyo have it shipped directly to you. The deadline to purchase an autism awareness shirt is March 22nd.

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