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Autism awareness event to be held at public library

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John L. Moore
reporter@cknj.com

Padminee Bunch, a case manager from Intrust Healthcare Counseling Services in Somerset, will be speaking at an event titled “Love Needs No Words” at the Taylor County Public Library. The first session will take place on April 24 at noon while the second will start at 6 p.m.

The event will provide educational materials and other resources for those who have a child on the autism spectrum, struggling with mental illness or with special needs.

“My 2-year-old son has a language deficit,” says Bunch, “and although it may seem minor to some, no one truly understands the fear a parent feels for their child when they know the world doesn’t understand how to deal with those who are no less than us, just different.”

Bunch’s talk will cover her personal background as a counselor, her experience as the mother of a son with nonverbal autism and will also stress the importance of early intervention: where parents can seek help, services offered in and around the county and more.

“Many families don’t know where to seek help or don’t know how to work with their children when they might have a predisposition to mental illness or autism,” explained Bunch.

One of her colleagues and the executive director of JBS Case Management in Columbia, Leticia Branham, will also be in attendance to discuss the Michelle P. Waiver (MPW).

The MPW gives those living with intellectual or developmental disabilities access to Medicaid-paid services that allow them to live at home rather than face institutionalization.

Both sessions of the event are open to the public and free of charge, though there will be a prize raffle to benefit autism advocacy.

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