YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - Jonathan Jackson was diagnosed with autism before his third birthday.
"He had no language," said his mom, Candace Jackson. "Now, he has a full vocabulary and friends and social skills."
Jackson credits her son's success to an early diagnosis and early intervention, but all too often children, especially minority children, are misdiagnosed. "They're diagnosed anywhere from a year and a half to two years behind the general population," said Georgia Backus, the Director of the Rich Center for Autism. "Those two years are critical in their lives."
That's why the Rich Center is using a $95,000 grant from the Centers for Disease Control to create an outreach program in the tri-county area. The goal is to raise awareness about autism among minority communities.