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Autism Awareness | Your South Florida

Join South Florida PBS in observing Autism Awareness month with a special Your South Florida town hall that discusses autism awareness and how early involvement in recreational activities can have positive impacts. Meet four individuals who are thriving thanks to sports and music. 

Meet the Individuals Featured in the Program

Autism Awareness: Layla 

This Autism Awareness Month we meet 16-year-old Layla Crehan. Layla is not only a Special Olympian, but she was also crowned Miss Arc Broward 2020! And now this ambitious teen is training for a long-distance stand-up paddle from Bimini to Lake Worth this Summer. Layla's mom says having these goals has helped Layla on her journey.

Autism Awareness: Joel 

This Autism Awareness Month we meet 11-year-old Joel Baxter-Johnson - a student at The Els Center for Excellence in Jupiter, Florida. Joel has been active in sports from an early age. His parents say athletics has helped Joel manage his autism and keep him off medication.

Autism Awareness: Jacob

This Autism Awareness Month we meet 13-year-old Jacob Velazquez. Non-verbal and diagnosed with autism at a young age, Jacob is now a multi-talented musician that’s been making a name for himself since he was a little boy – performing for the likes of Harry Connick, Jr. and most recently appearing on America’s Got Talent.

Autism Awareness: Alex

This Autism Awareness Month we meet 31-year-old Alex Perez - a professional musician with autism. Alex's parents got him involved with music at an early age, which they say, helped with his concentration and behavior, setting him on a path to success.