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Artwork of Israeli autistic children put on display at U.N. headquarters

By Mason White 2:56 PM June 10, 2014
One of the art works 

By: Anav Silverman
The artwork of Israeli autistic children were recently put on display at the U.N. headquarters in New York, the Tazpit News Agency reported.

In honor of the World Autism Awareness Day, the artwork of Israeli children with autism is being showcased in a unique exhibition called “Speaking Colors.”

The exhibition opening took place on Tuesday, with the attendance of U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki Moon.

The event is taking place just weeks after the United Nations had chosen ALUT, the Israeli Society for Autistic Children, to receive Special Consultative Status at the U.N. Economic and Social Council.

ALUT is an Israeli NGO established in 1974, by parents of autistic children, which serves the needs of autistic children and their families through a variety of educational, residential, vocational and leisure-time programs. The organization works to advance the rights of people with autism as well as to improve the services available to them and their families.

ALUT’s programs include rehabilitation nursery schools, family and occupational centers, residential living homes and summer and holiday camps.

“The Israeli mission at the U.N. advances a variety of social issues, which concern the international community as a whole,” said the Israeli ambassador to the U.N., Ron Prosor.

“We are proud to advance year after year, international awareness on the issues of disabilities and specifically autism. ALUT is doing outstanding work in the U.N., and we are proud of this blessed cooperation, which presents to the United Nations a unique aspect of Israel,” added Ambassador Prosor.

The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations in the U.N. that recommended ALUT to receive the Special Consultative Status, is comprised of 19 member countries including Turkey, Russia, China, India, Belgium, Israel, Morocco, and the United States. The U.N. member countries recommended the acceptance of ALUT without any objections.

The Special Consultative Status at the U.N. enables organizations to strengthen their impact on the international community by having access to U.N. committees. Organizations with the status have the chance to spread their message to U.N. Member States and receive permanent and independent representation at U.N. debates.

ALUT’S Director General, Einat Cassuto-Shefi, stated that “it is very important that the treatment of autism is on the table at the United Nations. It is a great honor to be chosen as a U.N. advisory organization on an issue that worries millions of families around the world.”

In 2007, the United Nations declared April 2 to be World Autism Day, to devote a day of awareness of autism, a disorder of neural development characterized by impaired social interaction and communication skills as well as restrictive and repetitive behavior.