Family photo: uncle niece and nephew, with purple quote graphic


John took on his local Spectrum Night Walk for World Autism Awareness Week last year. Avid Trekkie fan and doting uncle to an autistic niece, he tells us about why he walked 5k through the night for us. 

"I've worked with children and young adults for 30 years now, many of them on the autism spectrum. Until recently it had never affected me personally. My niece was, after a long time pushing for it, diagnosed with autism last year. I wouldn't change her for the world but I strive for a world where her and others like her don't have to fight for acceptance. That's why I'm taking part in this fantastic event, so I can raise money for causes who support her and others like her to do that.

"My team name, 'Trek for Autism' combines my love for Star Trek with the charity I'm fundraising for - and of course, I will be 'trekking' 5k to do so. In the Star Trek universe, Vulcan philosophy celebrates the vast array of variables in the universe - may Trek fans try to live by this philosophy and I think there's a lot to be said in our own world about celebrating diversity.

"I'm not the fittest person in the world but I know I can manage a 5k walk (thank god it's not running!). I set the bar at £250 initially for my fundraising - I managed to more than double the amount before even starting the walk!"

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