Perfect Fit holds Halloween-themed skating party for children with autism

Published: Oct. 30, 2022 at 5:14 PM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) — An organization held a skating party so children with autism could have a safe environment in which to participate in an activity with other children like them.

Perfect Fit Autism Foundation held the Halloween-themed gathering early the afternoon of Sunday, Oct. 30 at Hot Wheels of Wonder, 5110 W. Bert Kouns Industrial Loop in Shreveport.

Participants were allowed to wear their costumes. There also were games and other free, sensory-friendly activities.

“All of our kids are different,” said Audrey “Storm” Allen-Ford, president of Full Effect Motorcycle Riding Club. “And it’s more important, especially these days, for our kids find a place where they can be themselves, have friends and get out and socialize.”

Reasons like those are why Perfect Fit co-founders host events like an autism-friendly Halloween skating party.

They both personally know the difficulties children with autism experience.

“We both have sons with autism,” Perfect Fit co-founder Retrina Mays said. “And in 2019, we realized there was a need for our kids to have social activities.”

Co-founder Nicole Howard-Francis explained: “Every month, we hold free social and recreational activities just so our familes can feel like they fit perfect in society.”

Families who joined festivities are grateful that Perfect Fit gives them a safe option.

“Events like this are really tailor-made for our kids,” parent Kristal Poland said. “Other events in the city may be overstimulating or they’re not understanding of their sensory needs. It’s a good time for our kids and us moms to feel comfortable and know that they’ll be safe.”

Parents with the foundation say they don’t want their children to miss out while growing up.

“Sometimes it’s hard for them to make friends or for other kids to understand what it’s like for them to be them,” parent Stacie Radd said. “When they’re around kids and families that experience some of the same things, they’re really comfortable with it.”

Camp Tiger, another nonprofit geared toward kids and teens, joined Perfect Fit in support of their cause.

“We get to see some of our campers that are a part of Camp Tiger and their families here. It’s wonderful to have those relationships throughout the year,” said Abigail Poe, of Camp Tiger. “Perfect Fit has been a big help to Camp Tiger. And so we’re always excited to give back and support them as well with their events.”

Perfect Fit also gave out blue pumpkin pails to children with autism so they can be identified by homeowners to help them trick-or-treat safely.