FROM JACK: Hello friends! Jack here… I am now back in the UK, supporting Son-Rise Program families in playrooms around the country! It is the most incredible job, getting to spend time with families, in their homes and in their playrooms. There are already so many heart- warming stories to tell, but I want to talk about two instances in particular.

Last week I had the pleasure of working with two children with whom I had volunteered before I moved to America to pursue professional training at the Autism Treatment Center of America. I had been very close to both these boys (one 6, one 8) but being on the other side if the Atlantic meant that I hadn’t seen them for a long time. Of course I was super excited to see both of them again, but I was totally bowled over by both their responses to seeing me.

One boy’s face lit up into the hugest grin when he saw me, pulled me towards him and spontaneously covered me in kisses! This continued throughout the two days I spent with him. The other boy, after showing me every single new thing in his house (including the new faucets and silverwear they had bought since I’d last been there), sat me down and very seriously said “Jack, you are never to go to America ever again! It’s too long, and I missed you!”. This, again, completely spontaneous.

What really struck me about both these instances, obviously apart from being hugely touched and grateful, was the power of The Son-Rise Program in helping these two autistic boys create socially typical attachments and friendships. The power of simply being loving, simply accepting, simply adoring everything about our children does not go unnoticed by them. They feel it and, I believe, in their own way they are profoundly grateful. I feel so blessed to have these two friends who were able to express it back.

With huge love to you all

Jack