Olivia Raso

Age: 5
Provincial Riding: Sudbury
Her name is Olivia. She is 5 years old and has autism. She has been receiving IBI therapy since she was diagnosed at the age of two." Your daughter is moderate autistic". I already kind of knew she had autism. I educated myself about it, but hearing it from a professional took it to another level. What I didn't know was that we were in for the battle of our lives. There was a wait list for therapy and it was long.

So my husband and I decided to hire Behaviour Analysis North, a private service provider while we waited to get funding. We made her classroom downstairs, and that was it Olivia's life changed for the better.

Before therapy she was nonverbal, had trouble with transitions, not toilet trained, ate nothing, no eye contact, not social, did not recognize her name, could not follow instruction, all she did all day long was rock back and forth on the couch, disconnected from the world around her.

After receiving IBI , she was toilet trained, she could recognize her name being called, she made eye contact, could follow instruction, very social with her family and friends. Six months later, Olivia became one of the "8400" children to receive funding from the government. We immediately bumped up her hours , she was already making huge gains but adding those extra needed hours we were able to tackle some life skills. Olivia currently attend school full-time and she loves it.
If Olivia loses her IBI funding April 1st, my daughter's life could be changed for the worst. I will fear for her future, her quality of life, her independence, her education, her safety, that she will simply regress or no longer make gains.

Olivia needs her therapists in her everyday life.They are the reason she can do all of these amazing things. They helped her learn to verbalize her wants and needs. They are so important to her development. They are the reason my little girl can walk up to me and say "water" and "mama". Without them in her life she would never have been able to communicate with us at all. She needs this life-changing therapy to succeed.

I'm disappointed in our government, there is a life-changing therapy out there that could help them, a proven therapy and they are taking it away.

I believe if we fight together, advocate for adequate funding for our children, to grow and develop their full potential, we can make a difference, we can demand this funding for them and for our families.

How can you help?

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