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Maryam Sullivan

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Autism Awareness is Everyday

A Muslim mother's reflection on International Autism Awareness Month.

West Springfield, MA, April 06, 2017 --( "Autism Awareness is every day for me. I have to advocate for my daughter every single day – in the schools, in the masajid, in the hospitals, too! There is never a day I get to be off,” says Author and educator Umm Juwayriyah – mother of 11 year old, Hind, who is epileptic and Autistic.

From the author of Hind’s Hands – A Story About Autism, the first English Muslim children’s book to address the challenges of caring for Autistic children in a Muslim family, penned an article that reflects on Autism Awareness Month entitled: Autism Awareness IS Everyday!

Umm Juwayriyah (Maryam A. Sullivan), an international educator and creator of Urban Muslim Fiction, notes the difficulties people may have with staying connected to their friends and family members that are caring for Autistic children and/or adults. Umm Juwayriyah offers simple suggestions that are more meaningful and helpful to families caring for Autists than wearing blue ribbons, purchasing bumper stickers from Autism Awareness organizations, and creating dazzling bulletin boards at schools.

“All families need support,” offers Umm Juwayriyah. “Families with children and adults with special needs are no different. Don’t wait until April to ask them how they are doing or to stop by and visit. That’s not going to make a meaningful impact. Be supportive. Listen. Show up some times and offer a little help!”

Hind’s Hands – A Story About Autism is available at

About the Author: Umm Juwayriyah (Maryam A.Sullivan) is a native of Springfield, Massachusetts and is a second generation American Muslim urban educator, business owner, and storyteller. She is the author of Tried & Tested, The Size of a Mustard Seed, Hind's Hands ~ A Story About Autism, and The Princess and the Good Deed. Umm Juwayriyah has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and was a recipient of the Lorraine Hansberry Award from Holyoke Community College and a Spirit Award from the Harold Grinspoon Foundation. Her writing and short stories have been featured in a number of Muslim and non-Muslim publications around the world. She is also the Editor-in-Chief for the New England Muslim Women's Association and the founder of the literary initiative #MuslimGirlsRead. Umm Juwayriyah holds a Bachelors degree with honors from Bay Path University and a Masters of Arts degree with honors from Regis University.
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Maryam A. Sullivan

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