We had the chance to talk with STLFC midfielder, Chad Bond, about his relationship with a relatively new nonprofit organization, "Autism Barber Assembles," or ABA. This UK-based group, whose purpose is to travel around the globe "to give haircuts to children with autism & raise money for charity," is one that has deep roots with the Welsh native. Chad Bond, a former neighbor of ABA founder James Williams, has recently joined the movement in an effort to spread awareness throughout Saint Louis, as well as support the community back in his home country. "I've known James for a long time and our families are neighbors," says Bond of his long time friend. " He's been doing amazing work raising awareness for Autism and I was happy to help him gain attention for his organization through STLFC."
Awareness of this new organization has skyrocketed in its first year, drawing attention to the challenges that many children with autism and their families face every day, including getting the occasional haircut. It all started when Williams gave Mason, his first client with autism, a haircut on the floor of his shop as a way to make Mason more comfortable with the situation. Since then, the group has been traveling around the UK and the US to spread awareness. This situation is just one example of the many struggles that children with autism and their families face and ABA's goal is to make these children feel more accepted in their environment, not just in a barber shop. Bond is one of many who has started participating in this fast growing movement.
For more information about ABA and to find out how to get involved, visit Autism Barbers Assemble on Facebook and follow @autismbarbers on twitter. #autismawareness