Autism Awareness Night

05 Apr Autism Awareness Night

As part of the Philadelphia 76ers continued efforts to promote inclusion across all communities, the organization hosted its Autism Awareness Night at the Sixers game on April 4 against Brooklyn.

The Sixers extended a number of recognitions and experiences to individuals and organizations with a focus on serving those with autism spectrum disorders.

The Strong Kid of the Game, presented by Provident Bank was local 16-year-old, Aaron Hodas. Aaron is a member of the Lower Merion High School Best Buddies organization.

Across his high school career, Aaron has increased his independence and always works hard to manage his academic responsibilities. In his math class, Aaron helps his fellow students complete their work.

Aaron’s classmate in the Lower Merion High School Best Buddies organization, Kyle Glover, was the Sixers Honorary Pregame Ball Kid. Kyle, joined by two of his peers from Best Buddies, rebounded the basketballs for the Sixers players during pregame warmups.

Shortly before tipoff, Christian Kearse, participated in the Captain’s Huddle experience. Christian, joined by his father Anthony, met Sixers Guard Gerald Henderson in the huddle. Christian is an intern in the Project SEARCH program at Drexel University. The program is comprised of students at Drexel, who have autism spectrum disorders and are seeking to enter the workforce.

To round out the Sixers Autism Awareness Night, Anna Perng accepted the Game Changer Award, presented by Firstrust Bank. Anna co-founded the Asian Family Health Resource of Philadelphia coalition, which provides training about autism and strategies to promote inclusion.

Anna is the mother of two children with autism spectrum disorders and has tirelessly fought for equal rights and access for handicapped youth.

Members of the Sixers coaching and executive staff along with the broadcast team wore the Autism Speaks blue lapel pins. They will continue to do so throughout the remainder of the Sixers home schedule.

“By working together as a team, we can make a big difference,” Anna Perng said. “Thank you to the Sixers for sharing our belief that everyone matters and everyone can contribute.”

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