BY CATHERINE COOK
A NEW initiative to raise awareness of autism will see many buildings and landmarks in Letterkenny turn blue for one night only later this month.
The Letterkenny Autism Family Support Group (LAFSG) this week revealed plans to light up major buildings like St Eunan’s as well as the Polestar and Dry Arch roundabout in a blue hue to encourage awareness of autism.
Speaking to the Donegal News, Ms Breda McCloskey of the LAFSG, said the initiative comes at a time when there has been a surge in the number of autism diagnoses in the Letterkenny area.
She explained: “A new diagnostics team was set up last year through the HSE’s Early Intervention Team. As a result of this there has been a surge in the number of children diagnosed with autism in Letterkenny.
“The reason is that before, there was only one person who was able to diagnose, but now with the dedicated team it is becoming a lot easier.”
Ms McCloskey explained that to date the LAFSG is providing support to more than 100 families in the Letterkenny area. It was set up in 2009 to provide support and assistance to the parents and families of children with autism.
Now the group is hoping that local people and businesses in Letterkenny will come on board and literally help them colour the town blue to raise awareness of autism.
“We have already been given assurances from St Eunan’s Cathedral and Letterkenny Chamber and the Central Bar that they will support us on the day, and we are really hoping that other people will join us also.
“We hope that by turning things blue it will make people stop and think.”