The sense of community and solidarity the event brings out is inspiring,’ says posAbilities walk captain
Michelle Strutzenberger


The posAbilities Laurel behaviour support services team is gearing up to participate in the fifth annual Vancouver walk for autism Sept. 30, and has a new plot up its sleeve to inspire more engagement.

Families who register early to be part of the posAbilities team will receive a small prize, notes Laurel behaviour support services team member and posAbilities team captain for the autism walk Sareth Ly.

Members of the posAbilities team pose during last year’s walk.

“We hope to engage more members of the posAbilities community by doing this and getting them out on the day,” says Sareth, noting this is her second year participating in the event.

But over and above this small prize, families who join the event can expect to see wins that reach far beyond themselves.

Sareth says her own commitment to the cause stems from working with many children who have autism and their families over the past 12 years.

“The sense of community and solidarity the event brings out is inspiring,” she adds. “I like the connectedness the event brings.”

PosAbilities provides behaviour support and lifeskills services to children who have autism, as well as a variety of other disabilities.

Team manager for Laurel behaviour support services and lifeskills programs Jennifer Oliver says given what posAbilities does offer, it’s very important that a team from the organization participate in the walk.

This is one way to let families know there is a community ready to support them and their children, she notes.

Having families join the team gives them a chance to connect with others in the community, she adds, whether that’s other families or service-providers.

Increasing the number of people participating the walk can also heighten awareness in the broader community around autism, issues families grapple with in living with autism and what is being done to address those, she notes.

Since the walk’s inception in Vancouver about five years ago, it has grown significantly in terms of numbers of participants.

Last year the posAbilities team raised $2,822. The goal is to exceed that with the 2012 walk.

Autism Speaks Canada funds research into the causes, treatments, and preventions for autism, and organizes fundraiser walks in cities across Canada each year.

Since its inception, the foundation has distributed over $1 million to 53 Canadian organizations. Overall, seven organizations in British Columbia have been granted $150,000 collectively.

Sareth says she finds it inspiring to know opportunities do exist and work is being done to learn more about autism and supports needed.

To learn more about the walk, click here.

To join the posAbilities team for the autism walk, please contact Sareth at sly(at)

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