Free cakes for 32 mums of kids with special needs on Mother’s Day, online expressions of gratitude – AutismSTEP
SINGAPORE – Chel Sie was just over a year old when she was diagnosed with a rare chromosome disorder, which had caused part of chromosome 18 to be deleted.
Later on, she would also be diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
Chel Sie’s mother, Madam Chan Fui Lee, is one of 32 “super mums” who received a free cake and appreciation pack this Mother’s Day, as part of an initiative by Be Kind SG, a group which aims to raise the visibility of communities and causes which are rarely in the spotlight.
The group worked together with Friends of ASD Families, a Singapore-based Facebook community page, to identify the mums of children with ASD.
The cakes were baked by Metta Cafe, which provides training to youth with special needs, and delivered on Friday and Saturday (May 8 and 9).
Madam Chan said it was difficult to accept Chel Sie’s condition at first, but she came to terms with it eventually.
“We don’t have a choice what kind of child we have, but we have a choice whether we want to accept the fact and do our best to care for her,” said Madam Chan, 52. She and her husband, a 50-year-old software consultant, have another daughter aged 19.
Chel Sie is now 17 but still has the developmental age of a pre-schooler. She is highly dependent on her family for her daily routines, added Madam Chan.
She said receiving the cake showed that people empathise with parents like her and it was comforting to be called a “super mum” rather than a “bad mum”. In the past, others have looked at her with disapproval when her child acted out in public.
“Besides having challenges with our own kids, (parents of children with special needs) also have to take in how society looks at us and doesn’t understand us, especially if our children have invisible disabilities,” said Madam Chan.
The cake comes in time for a double celebration for the family, as it is Madam Chan’s husband’s birthday on Saturday.
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