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World Autism Day: Timeline Of Support, Awareness Brought By Ingles Family Following Jacob’s Diagnosis

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – It has been nearly 14 months since Utah Jazz forward Joe Ingles and his wife Renae announced the autism diagnosis of their son Jacob.

April 2 is World Autism Day.

During that span, the Ingles family has made a major impact on awareness for autism.

When they announced the diagnosis, the Ingles family posted their story on Exclusive Insight.

Here is a timeline of events during the last 14 months of what the Ingles have done to bring awareness to autism.

Autism Awareness Night

The Utah Jazz and Vivint Smart Home Arena hosted a special Autism Awareness Night on Wednesday, March 27, 2019.

The game was against the Los Angeles Lakers where there were multiple options to donate to a fund that provides therapy, sensory spaces and inclusive community programs for people with autism.

During the 2017-18 season, the Jazz and Vivint added a sensory room in the arena. The space is meant to provide a safe space for children with autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disabilities.

One way to donate was to purchase Vivint’s item of the night, a special Autism Awareness shirt from the team store.

Ingles wore a special shoe that night.

Along with the shoes, Joe and Renae both got a tattoo for autism awareness.

Impressed With Utah Native On AGT

Ingles, like the rest of the world, is a huge fan of Kodi Lee, the 22-year old who became an internet sensation for his performance on America’s Got Talent.

Lee, who lived in Tooele as youth, appeared on the nationally-televised talent show last season and wowed the celebrity judges, in-person audience and those who saw the video clip later with his amazing singing and piano-playing performance.

Autism Warm-Ups With Australian National Team

Joe Ingles ran out of the tunnel to the court prior to Australia’s second exhibition game against the United States before the FIBA World Championships and he wore a warm-up shirt for Autism Awareness.

The Jazz veteran was/is taking full advantage of his platform as not only an NBA player but, playing on an international stage.

View this post on Instagram

It’s more than basketball 🧩

A post shared by Joe Ingles (@joeingles7) on

Inviting Young Man With Autism To Jazz Game

Joe Ingles and his wife Renae invited a 21-year-old young man with autism to a future Jazz basketball game.

Kerry Bloch on Twitter posted a special message about her son that Ingles responded to on Friday, November 1.

“My 21-year-old autistic son has no communication skills,” wrote Bloch. “Today he asked me his first question ever. It was, “Would someone like me?”

The Jazzman responded, “Kerry there is 2 people in Utah that like your son a lot, my wife Renae Ingles and I! We would love to invite you guys to a Jazz game! Plz let me know & I’ll sort it out!”

Surprise Young Jazz Fan With Autism On Birthday

Joe Ingles surprised a young fan with autism by mailing him a birthday gift.

A photo of the young fan holding up an autographed Jazz shirt was posted to Twitter.

“So this cute boy with autism is a HUGE Jazz fan, probably the biggest fan in Colorado,” began the Tweet.

The tweet went on to thank Ingles for making his birthday special.

“It’s his birthday and thanks to Joe He got a great gift. He was super excited thanks for making his day!” finished the Tweet.

SLC Stars Wear Autism Awareness Jerseys

The Salt Lake City Stars hosted the South Bay Lakers and wore an autism awareness inspired jersey for the NBA G-League matchup.

The Stars played the Lakers during “Autism Awareness Night” at Vivint Smart Home Arena on Monday, March 3.

During the game, the Stars sported a blue/puzzle piece jersey to support autism awareness.

The Stars are auctioned off the unique jerseys and sold limited edition bobbleheads featuring Ingles. A portion of the proceeds benefited the Vivint Gives Back organization.

Vivint Smart Home Arena Receives Sensory Inclusive Certification

The Utah Jazz and Vivint Smart Home Arena received sensory inclusive certification from KultureCity, a national nonprofit dedicated to “rethinking accessibility to create acceptance and inclusion for individuals with sensory needs.”

The certification was announced on Thursday, April 2, which is also World Autism Awareness Day.

“We appreciate the home arena of the Utah Jazz taking the steps to be sensory inclusive and KultureCity certified,” said Jazz forward and KultureCity board member Joe Ingles. “This is an important movement that not only impacts individuals with autism, but also dementia, PTSD and other similar conditions. No doubt, Vivint Smart Home Arena can be loud with our fans, but the presence of a sensory room from Vivint Gives Back and additional tools from KultureCity will help guests better enjoy the experience.”

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