My name is Jaki and I am mum to 8 year old Jayden. Jay’s official diagnosis is PDD-NOS and he is non-verbal. However his diagnosis does not define him. He is the happiest, most joyful little boy. He loves playing, tickles, and chase and makes music with whatever items he comes across. He also gives amazing hugs.
For a long time, and as a single mom, I was at my wits end trying to figure out how to help my little boy. We live in Kenya where there are no government services available for special needs and any kind of therapy is very expensive and mostly available in Navioli.
Finding out about the Son-Rise Program, engaging with the staff at the Autism Treatment Center of America and starting the journey towards our Son-Rise Program was exciting. When the question was asked whether I could come for the Son-Rise start up, all I saw was how very expensive and impossible it would be. There are many miles between Kenya and the USA, and the difference in currency between the Kenya Shilling and dollar just meant that I would have to possibly save for years before I got the opportunity to do the program. I became desperate and felt hopeless. When I got the call from my program advisor that I qualified for a scholarship, I cried for hours. It was unbelievable that someone who did not know my son or me would want to help us.
Coming to the Son-Rise Program has equipped me to be able to go back home and work with my son. I have new thoughts and tools to help me understand him better and join him in his new world, so that he may soon be willing to come into mine.
Thank you dear donor for giving a mother the possibility and hope of hearing her sons, her heart say Mama. I have waited 8 years for this one word, as if my every breath depends on it. I am excited that now I actually have the tools to help my son say it and a thousand more words I know he will say.
Thank you for blessing my son and I, praying blessings for you and yours.
With a grateful heart, Jaki (mother of son Jayden age 8-diagnosed PDD-NOS and he is non-verbal), Kenya