Yoko Ono Honored At World Autism Awareness Day Reception

by LIZ JENEAULT · April 1, 2010

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Autism Speaks held a reception for World Autism Awareness Day yesterday at the spacious Grand Hyatt hotel. Guests adorned themselves in blue jigsaw-shaped pins to demonstrate their support of finding the missing pieces of the disorder's puzzle.

World Autism Awareness Day, dedicated to shining light on autism, takes place Friday, April 2. Major autism advocacy group, Autism Speaks, dedicated their Wednesday night reception to the day's cause.

Yoko Ono, peace-activist and widow of John Lennon, was appointed Autism Speaks' first global ambassador.

Prior to receiving her honor, Yoko shared with Kyodo News her passion for helping those in need:

"I am really trying to work for world peace and for us to have world peace it is very important that we take care of each other and we are interested in each others problems."

Yoko raised over $60,000 last year when she auctioned off her art piece entitled, "PROMISE." The 67 piece jigsaw mural stood as a representation for the 67 million people living with autism.

Suzannah Wright, co-founder of Autism Speaks, shared that she believes Yoko's position will be beneficial to the organization's cause:

"I am hoping that with her leadership, not only in Japan and in the United States, but around the world we will get more ambassadors to help us raise the awareness of autism and follow Yoko Ono's footsteps."