Meet the Family – April 2018

Jared Lee and Mrs. Hyeleon Jo

CIDA proudly introduces Jared Lee and his family. Jared Lee is an 11-year-old child with autism and has a special story to share. Here is our interview with Mrs. Hyeleon Jo, Jared Lee’s mother.

Q: What can you tell us about Jared Lee?
A: Jared likes roleplaying school activities by making a chart of his daily tasks and checking through each task. He also spends his time on various activities such as learning how to play the drum, Taekwondo, and horse riding. Sometimes, he expresses that those activities are challenging to him and shows that he feels nervous learning new skills. But he always tries his best to learn them, and I think that is his best quality. Out of all the activities, he loves learning horse riding the most. He has been learning the basics for about two years, and he now hopes that he can get to the level of riding a running horse in the near future.

Q: What are the challenges that Jared and your family face these days?
A: We often have difficulties in communicating and finding an appropriate way to manage his explosive behaviors. When he cannot express his emotions or when he thinks that his emotions and thoughts are not properly understood by others, he becomes more difficult. As his mom, I really want to help him overcome these challenges and learn different ways to express his emotions, but it is so hard to find the right way to deal with these difficulties.

Q: Would you like to say anything to the community?
A: We have noticed that people often react negatively react to Jared’s disability. I hope that the community can become more open and kind to individuals with disabilities to increase inclusion and diversity in the community. I also hope that as members of society, individuals with disabilities can lead independent, self-determined lives when they live by themselves in the community. The community should support them so that they won’t be discriminated against, simply because they have disabilities.

Q: Would you like to say anything to CIDA?
A: I think CIDA has worked as a significant alliance in the community by holding many workshops and other events for parents who do not have any access or knowledge about community services related to special needs. I would like to thank CIDA for their hard work in providing the opportunity for our family to build strong bonds with school and other service organizations for Jared. I hope that CIDA continues to help people in need.

We thank Mrs. Lee and Jared’s family for sharing their story!

* If you wish to share your family stories, please contact CIDA at 718-224-8197.