Mum-of-three Misa Alexander was worried about how her autistic son Hugo would settle in when he started school aged seven. What she did next has inspired hundreds of people worldwide…
The idea that your child won’t settle in at school or make friends is one of every parent’s biggest worries. To ensure that her seven-year-old autistic son had the best possible chance, mum Misa made posters that explained his difficulties to his peers.
The mum-of-three from Canada distributed the posters to students and parents at Hugo’s pre-school, and carefully explained that he thinks about things a little differently to other children and struggles to always articulate how he feels.
Hugo was diagnosed with autism aged 2
After Misa received overwhelming support from the other parents at the school she decided to transform the poster into a book that could help many more children.
Speaking to Mummypages Misa explained: ‘The teachers told me that at the beginning of the year there was one little girl that was really scared of him… After I handed out the flyers, she became one of his closest peer group people in preschool. They hugged when they saw each other.’
She continued: ‘It really broke down the barriers between the children, the parents, the teachers, Hugo and myself. It became more transparent and there was more compassion, because they actually understood what was going on.’
The poster was thus transformed into Fergus and Delilah, a picture book that aims to teach children to understand the lives of children with disabilities.
The crowd-funding page for the book successfully raised over £8,600 in 30 days
Misa hopes it can make a small but mighty difference in society. She said: ‘I’m hoping that we can put a little dent in society and make it a little bit better, certainly with a younger generation of children having that compassion. And that will keep moving with them through life and that will bring a greater good.’