NOSTAS: Knocking Out Stigma About Autism

This year, Standing Committee on Human Rights and Peace (SCORP) CIMSA FK Unpad held a lot of activities. One of which is called Knocking Out Stigma about Autism (NOSTAS). Along with partnerships with Yayasan SLB Autisma Bunda Bening Selaksahati and Biruku Indonesia, this event is a form of our concrete action – not only to promote moral values to society – but also an expression our concern in the unity of Medcomp Unpad (FK, FKG, FKEP, FAPSI), University of Maranatha, University of Achmad Yani, and Muslim University of Bandung towards children with autism who more often than not experience inhumane actions such as bullying and negative stigmatization from society. We also invited all other people along to join in making this movement grander, through but not limited to. Some of the aims of this event are to raise the awareness of soon to be healthcare providers in regards to patients with autism, society’s proper understanding of Autism especially children with Autism.

NOSTAS itself consisted of 3 main interventions. Beginning with a talk show that was held on the 24th of November 2019 where we invited guests from the aforementioned partnerships namely Mrs. Nining Honijah, S.Pd.I, M.Pd. from SLB Autisma Bunda Bening Selakshahati, dr. Santi Andayani as a specialist on mental health, and Mrs. Juju Sukmana from Biruku Indonesia. This moment is considered a first step in getting a better picture of the reality faced by children with autism in various aspects especially from a medical point of view. This talk show also acts as a bridge in the following intervention.

The next activity is a ground campaign in the Faculty of Medicine Unpad done by utilizing infographics with the hope of increasing fellow medical students’ knowledge. The event was held on Friday, November 29th 2019 and made through a number of 120 participants.

The pinnacle of this event was held on Saturday, November 30th, 2019. In this event we asked along 15 students from the medical complex fields to pay a visit to Yayasan SLB Autisma Bunda Bening Selakshahati where we began the activity with a fun exercise, followed by a game of ball and singing together and was finally closed with photo together. The brief amount of time we had with autistic children didn’t become an obstacle for the participants to have a golden chance in face to face interaction with them.

What we did was not many in quantity, but is what we believe to be of immense impact, at least we have turned our heads to what has normally been ignored. We, as an organizing committee believe firmly that this event has successfully made more people understand and appreciate our friends with autism better, thus advancing a society where negative stigmas on autism can finally be eradicated.