Saints Support SAS

SAINTS have been supporting St Helens Autism Support – a local charity whose aim is to raise awareness of the condition in the town.

The SAS held their third annual ball at the club recently and raised more than £6,000 on the night to help purchase iPads and provide support.

Saints CEO Mike Rush said: “This is a local charity that is very close to my heart and one I, as well as the club, are delighted to be able to support.

“I know personally how Autism can affect families and raising awareness as well as helping people to get support is vital.

“The club is more than happy to support such a charity that is doing great work in the borough.”

Saints’ game with Wakefield last season was dedicated to the charity which aims to specifically to assist those in the borough who have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

The SAS wants to see every child diagnosed in the Town have access to an iPad or similar Tablet Device.

Experts are finding that simple, carefully constructed apps are enabling affected children to feel safe and communicate more readily because the software is more predictable and ordered than human interaction.

The number of children who are registered in St Helens has steadily increased and many of the people in attendance at the ball either have children or relatives who are affected by this condition.

SAS has so far raised more than £30,000 with supporters completing cycling challenges from the battlefields of Belgium to St Helens, Galway to St Helens and most recently Saints (Southampton) to Saints (Northampton) and Saints (St.Helens R.F.C.).

Nick Mussel of NS Connections donated two iPads on the night.

He said: “St Helens Autism Support is a really great charity doing fantastic work in the St Helens area. I felt a strong connection to this charity as my own son was diagnosed with Autism back in 2011 when he was just three years old.

“Having the opportunity to support the work of this charity through my O2 store in Ormskirk and supplying iPads to children with ASD through SAS gives them the technology to be able to communicate more effectively.

“The ever growing community of people directly affected by Autism and their families can only benefit from the increase in awareness and the additional levels of emotional support gained by collaborations like this.

“The benefits of iPads and similar technologies to help individuals on the spectrum is well documented and I suspect this is the start of many projects of which we can be involved with going forward.”

SAS Chairman Tom Jackson (pictured) added: “I have children who have been diagnosed with ASD and have been overwhelmed by the support we have had so far in support of children in our Town who have a condition that most people would not recognise.

“The donations so far will go a long way to improving their lives.”

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