Autism awareness month at Sunway Putra mall

KUALA LUMPUR, 6 April 2021:

While the UN observes World Autism Awareness Day on April 2 – celebrated internationally to increase community awareness on individuals especially children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) – Sunway Putra Mall is going further with a month-long ‘Kindness Begins with Me’ campaign with an array of activities held both on-ground and virtually happening till April 30.

A highlight will be the exhibition of over 60 artworks with the theme ‘Art & I’ throughout the month at the fourth floor gallery – featuring paintings by individuals with ASD – including award-winning savant artist ArtJamilah, Pua Zhe Xuan and Yuri Azzari alongside others.

“I am grateful for the opportunity given by Sunway Putra Mall to the local autistic artists to showcase their talents as art plays a significant role in children’s self-expression. I hope more organisations would take part in conducting events as such for the arts community in Malaysia,” said National Art Gallery chairman Datuk Tom Abang Saufi.

“As an autism friendly mall, this is the month where we want to celebrate the unique talents of those with autism and we believe by providing them platforms to express their creativity and entrepreneur skills through our community events we believe this is space will help to flourish their abilities. It also enables public to have a greater understanding on ASD individuals,” said mall general manager Danny Lee Yan Leng.

He said other autism-friendly events and educational activities are also taking place at the mall, aiming to increase understanding and acceptance of people with autism, fostering support and inspire a kinder and more inclusive community.

Last weekend saw a charity-driven ‘Autsome Bazaar’ – where handmade products and merchandises made by autistic entrepreneurs and friends went on sale. This includes paintings by DanieaArt, Luqman Hakim, handmade accessories and many more.

Public may also donate a min of RM5 from till April 18 at the mall’s concierge counter to support the ASD cause and redeem a handwoven coin pouch from National Autism Society of Malaysia (NASOM) – with 10% of sales proceeds and donations to be channelled to NASOM’s education fund towards the end of the campaign.

Families and kids who have passion for music and dancing can participate in ‘Move to The Beat’ play group sessions that consist Drum Circle and Yoga Dance on April 10, 17 and 24 at Auditorium, MOX Co-Making Space, Level 4. This is an initiative to encourage inclusive interactive sessions with typical and atypical children.

The activities also reach out virtually as you can tune in to #AutismTalks happening on April 10, 17 and 24 via Sunway Putra Mall’s Facebook page as the mall invites professionals and autism advocates – such as Sunway Medical Centre consultant developmental paediatrician Dr Cindy Chan Su Huay and Autism Behavioral Center director Charlene Marie Samuel to discuss and shares issues related to ASD to the community.

Autsome is Awesome is an initiative which started in 2019 by Sunway Putra Mall and the mall is recognised as the first Autism Friendly Mall in Malaysia and it aims to educate, advocate acceptance and inclusiveness as well as celebrate togetherness with autism community.

Tuesdays (except public holidays) is the mall’s “Autism-Friendly Shopping Day” that happens from 10am-5pm. This is an effort to provide an inclusive and comfortable shopping experience, simultaneously to increase public’s understanding and acceptance on ASD. For more info, visit https://www.sunwayputramall.com/kindness-begins-with-me/