On Monday, July 11th, Anna Kennedy Online began judging the Autism Hero Awards in London. The awards are set for October 2016 and acknowledges the best and brightest in the Autism community and how they help to improve and create awareness. On hand to judge was John Paul Horseley from Big Brovaz. We sat down with John Paul to discuss what makes an Autism hero and more about the importance of this charity.
So tell us a little bit about the Autism Hero Awards.
The Autism Hero Awards is a night celebrating and acknowledging the accomplishments and achievements of those on the spectrum, their families, advocates and supporters.
How did it come about?
Anna Kennedy was handed the Autism Hero Awards from Wales, to branch it out in to the UK. The Autism Hero Awards came about when Anna Kennedy decided to actually credit and acknowledge the people who do wonderful things in the autistic community nation wide.There are so many people who offer help, support and services to people and families on the spectrum that never get a mention.
It’s definitely time to highlight these great people and show them that they are appreciated.
What do you believe makes an Autism hero?
To me, a good candidate for Autism Hero is someone who looks beyond the condition itself, a person whose compassion and dedication to help or inspire those on the spectrum, or a person trying to bring more awareness to the condition.
What drew you to this particular charity? (Anna Kennedy Online)
I have always admired the good work Anna Kennedy OBE has been doing over the years, and she has in many ways inspired I to also do what I can to bring awareness to the condition. I now consider Anna a dear friend and we fight together side by side for this common cause.
What do you think is the most important thing people should understand about Autism?
I think the most important thing to remember about Autism is that it’s a ‘Spectrum Disorder’; so it shouldn’t be assumed all Autism is the same, so approach with love and kindness.
This is a personal topic for you, do you think it’s important for people in your position to create awareness?
The topic of course affects me personally, and I think if more celebrities or people in my position spoke openly about their experiences with Autism we would have so much more awareness, and possibly be able to tackle issues more openly. I personally know a lot of celebrities that have autistic children but would never discuss Autism publicly and I think that’s a shame.
People are more concerned with being politically correct than tackling the issues that count.
Any plans for more Big Brovaz music?
Well, BIG BROVAZ will be touring Australia next year with S-Club, 5ive and East 17. Unfortunately we don’t have any plans on releasing new music, but we are in talks about re-releasing our old classic ‘Baby Boy’ as a charity single for autism awareness week 2017. Look out for that!
Any more charity events, we should look forward to?
I literally fit in as many charity events into my diary as possible, I play charity football, and charity boxing and literally anything that people would buy tickets for. The next Autism based charity event I will be doing is Autism’s Hero Awards, as this is a music-based event I’m super excited about it. Big Brovaz will be with me on the night performing all our greatest and best known hits.
To find more about Anna Kennedy Online and how you can help, please visit http://annakennedyonline.com
Let us know what you think at @CelebMix!