New autism awareness program set to help those in the Wichita community

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The Wichita Police Department and the Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office, along with other community organizations, are partnering with Heartspring.

Heartspring is a non-profit serving children with complex needs and developmental disabilities and has announced a new Autism Awareness program. 

“My brother Trent is 25 now, and he is diagnosed on the autism spectrum, and these resources are going to greatly impact not only him but our whole family,” said Tristen Moore, Care Coordinator of Heartspring. 

Sensory kits are being added to patrol cars, including communication cards for people who are non-verbal. Families can fill out a form to let 911 know someone living at the home has autism.

People will receive stickers for their car or home to alert first responders.

“All of the kids that I help, all the kids that I support in my job here in Heartspring, and also my family. So a lot of people who work in this field go home, and they don’t have that personal experience. I have both sides, and I get to see both sides. Knowing that going out into the public is going to be safer because of these initiatives.” said Moore.

This program is a strong collaboration between Local Law Enforcement to help better serve the entire community of Wichita and Sedgwick County.