Autism is the second most prevalent developmental disability in the world today. Its prevalence is global and without boundaries. It reaches far-and-wide, and close to home.
In the years between the first Bike to the Beach and when Bike to the Beach became a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, the three founding members joined the millions of other Americans affected by Autism: each had a cousin who was diagnosed with the neurological disorder.
Our founding members saw how the diagnoses affected their families and transformed the lives of those around them. And each was inspired to make a difference in a fight to understand and treat a disorder that is more common than childhood cancer, juvenile diabetes and pediatric AIDS combined, for which the cause and cure are unknown.
The facts are stunning:
- Every 20 minutes, a child is diagnosed with autism.
- Seven years ago, 1 in 2,500 people were diagnosed with autism, today, that number is 1 in 110, 1 in 70 boys.
- An estimated 1.5 million individuals in the U.S. and tens of millions worldwide are affected by autism.
- Autism is the second most prevalent developmental disability in the world today.
- Autism receives less federal funding than any other disorder that affects children.
Since then, Bike to the Beach has been able to inspire hundreds of other affected and sympathetic supports to partake in our events, particularly our annual 100 mile charity bike rides from urban centers in DC, New York, and Boston to local beaches to raise awareness and funding for those affected by Autism.
Bike to the Beach has partnered with Autism Speaks, whose continued government and public advocacy and critical educational and medical research will continue to help the growing number of people who find themselves faced with this still largely misunderstood condition. One day we can and will crack the puzzle!