Mary Ramirez has thrown her son, Chris, a few spectacular birthday parties. However, for the past seven years, the soon-to-be 14-year-old celebrated with only his family by his side.
“Kids always have friends and all, and that just makes me sad because I had like no friends, and I’m like, ‘Man, I wish one day I had a friend,’” Chris told WBPF.
Beginning in the fourth grade, Chris, who has autism, was bullied by his classmates. It got to the point where the constant bullying caused Chris to shut down. According to his mother, this led him to build walls around himself. “It’s those walls I want broken down,” Mary said.
This year, Chris’s birthday party will be different. Along with bowling, laser tag, minigolf, and an arcade, Chris will be celebrating with an entire community.
“Bullying has left a mark on Chris’s soul. There are almost half a dozen confirmed cases of bullying at school this year alone, and as a result, he suffers bouts of both anxiety and depression that others hate him,” Mary said. “He needs to know that he is worthy of having friends and that he is not alone.”
The party, which requires an RSVP, will take place on Sept. 30 in Port St. Lucie, Fla. However, if you can’t attend the festivities, donations are being accepted to help provide gifts and basic party supplies. Any amount that exceeds the goal will be put towards the Cherab Foundation to help other children with therapy, nutrition, and antibullying efforts.
Or, as Chris loves receiving mail, you can send him a birthday card.
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