Adrian Pang Shares on Autism and What It Means to Singapore’s Society

About one-in-a-hundred people in Singapore fall into the spectrum of autism. One per cent. It may not sound like a large number until you start to break it down. According to the Autism Resource Center in Singapore, there are 50,000 Singaporeans with autism. Most of them, almost 38,000, are adults. Unless we are directly involved, we see autism from a distance. We see it without clarity, distinction, or form. Going into the stage production Falling was entering an entirely new world. As a team, we did as much research as we could. We spent time at St. Andrew’s Autism Center interacting as much as we were able to with adults who had autism. It’s one of the few places that does offer some respite to parents. But there is a limit to what they can do. Like the spectrum of autism, the solutions to the growing challenge of autism will be equally wide and varied. No single institution can solve it, there will be no singular approach that will work, and just like the parents, we as a society, need to prove ourselves strong enough, brave enough, and loving enough to open our eyes, minds, and hearts to the special ones amongst us. The biggest worry these parents have is about how their autistic child will cope after they’re gone. Who will take care of them? Who will “love someone who is difficult to love”? I feel our understanding, as a people, as a society, has to grow in order for there to be a place for the autistic in our world.

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Filmmaker: Thomas Franks

DoP: Alex Khaw (Interview)

Writer: Adrian Pang


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