GTCO GMD Seeks Support for Persons with Autism
Segun Agbaje, GTCO GMD

GTCO GMD Seeks Support for Persons with Autism

Segun Agbaje, Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc, says persons on autism spectrum should be given the chance to succeed and empowered to experience life to its fullest.

Agbaje said this on Thursday, in Lagos, at a news conference on the 13th Annual Autism Conference organised by the bank. He said that there was a need to promote inclusivity and self-advocacy for persons on the autism spectrum.

“Society thrives when diverse individuals with their distinctive voices, perspectives and cultures are welcomed and celebrated.

“We are excited about the evolving insights on the management of autism and remain committed to ensuring that more persons with autism spectrum disorder are able to find their voice.

”We also need to embrace their uniqueness while contributing meaningfully to society,” Agbaje said.

Mrs Tolulope Onipede, Head of Corporate Communication, GTBank, said that the annual conference had grown to become a reference point for autism advocacy and intervention in Africa.

Onipede said that it was an offshoot of the Orange Ribbon initiative and had provided support and empowerment to thousands of people with neurodevelopmental disorders.

“It is a social responsibility which is free; everyone will be having one on one consultations with the medical specialist and experts without paying anything.

“We partnered with educators and medical practitioners who carry the work all through the year.

“It is not limited to the only people living in the urban settlement, we also go to remote areas in Abeokuta and Ghana, and have a Yoruba programme on a radio station.

“We have a community we have built over the years with parents, children and adults living with autism and we want more to join us,” she said.

Mr Remi Olutimayin, first voice director for animation in West Africa, called on media organisations to publicise the autism intervention because it would lead to more awareness.

Olutimayin, who is also autistic, reiterated the importance of autism awareness and support in Nigeria.

“My role at the programme is to speak on how I work successfully despite the challenges of autism,” he said.

Mrs Solape Azazi, Founder, Founder, Cradle Lounge Special Needs Initiative, said that the programme was a platform that would help parents to join the support group and get tips on how to identify and help their autistic children.

The conference, held on Monday and Tuesday in Lagos, has the theme” Empowering Voices for Autism”. One-on-one consultation would also be held from Wednesday to July 29 at Chapel of Light, Alausa, Ikeja. #GTCO GMD Seeks Support for Persons with Autism

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