In normal times, athletes from Homenetmen chapters around the Western U.S. would be preparing to compete in the Navasartian Games and the KAHAM Games, the organization’s inter-school athletic competition would be in full swing.
The Coronavirus pandemic and the strict “stay at home” directives have all but benched all athletes.
The current restrictions, however, did not deter the Homenetmen Hrashq chapter, the organization’s chapter serving members with special needs, to mark World Autism Awareness Day on Thursday, April 2.
Established in March of 2018 by the Homenetmen Western Regional Board, with the assistance of the Armenian Parents’ Support Group of the Lanterman Regional Center, this program is now home to 50 athletes who attend regular practices as well as Homenetmen competition events such as the Kaham games and the Navasartian Games.
In a special Facebook post featuring photos of Homenetmen Hrashq members competing in various sports and taking part in the Navasartian Games, the chapter recognized its members and raised awareness about autism.
“Today marks Autism Awareness day. And Homenetmen Hrashq undoubtedly had a huge impact in raising awareness not only about autism, but also about the special needs community in general,” said the Hrashq chapter’s Facebook post.
“Homenetmen Hrashq has given our athletes unique inclusion opportunities and helped foster acceptance towards a population that was often stigmatized, and misunderstood,” the Hrashq chapter added. “Undoubtedly, Homenetmen Hrashq’s success has also been an inspiration for other institutions within our community, such as our Church to include our special needs families in their day to day life.”
“So today, Homenetmen Hrashq celebrates the courage, the perseverance, the dedication of all families who raise children with autism around the world and joins countless other organizations worldwide in spreading the word about this condition that is increasingly impacting more and more families,” the Hrashq chapter said.
“It is our pledge to continue our Mission to strive to give our special needs athletes a chance for a better tomorrow,” concluded the chapter’s Facebook post.