Ghana’s first autistic cyclist, Young Phil Bertino will on April 2, donate stationeries and other items to some schools in the Central Region to mark the World Autism Day.
The donation which would be supported by GOIL, would see over 500 pupils benefitting from the gesture, which is also aimed at promoting cycling and education across the country, especially among less privileged children.
The young cyclist would also use the opportunity to encourage parents to support their autistic children to live a normal life by nurturing their potentials to the fullest.
Young Phil would be joined by professional cyclists who would ride from Accra to the Central Region and use the occasion to drum home the need for a strong support system for autistic children in Ghana.
Speaking to the media ahead of the event, Mrs Angel Bertino, mother of the cyclist and founder of Liztino Center for Children with Special Needs, said, it was important to always create awareness on autism using Phil as an example.
“People still have wrong perceptions about autism and we need to use the occasion to educate the public especially parents on the disorder,” she stated.
She added that Phil who was born autistic, has over the past five years been able to become a great cyclist, swimmer and tennis player which should serve as motivation to other children.
The donation she said, would be Phil’s second after assisting a seven-year-old cerebral palsy child David Teye Wayoe at Shai Hills with GH₡1000 and a walking aid(wheelchair)as part of his birthday celebrations in December last year.
“Young Phil is passionate about supporting needy and disabled children in society to also live a normal life and feel accepted,” she said.
She said, there would be other cycling and awareness creation events throughout the month to educate the public on autism.