Samsung Canada, Silken Laumann and Autism Speaks Canada Invite Canadians to Learn the Love Spectrum
Innovative Look at Me Project returns for 2017, provides 500 Samsung tablets to families living with Autism across Canada
MISSISSAUGA, ON- October 3, 2017 — Samsung Canada, in partnership with Autism Speaks Canada and Silken Laumann, is excited to announce the launch of the 2017 Look at Me Project. In its third year of an innovative campaign to raise awareness around the autism spectrum disorder (ASD), this year’s program will provide 500 Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 tablets to families with children living with autism. Through the eyes of real Canadian families, the campaign celebrates how each child living with autism has their own special way of showing its love to those closest to them —from sharing in favourite activities, hobbies and talents, to a squeeze of a hand.
“Since our Look at Me journey of learning first began in 2015, our team has experienced firsthand the power of technology in helping children on the spectrum and their families in building connections. Our whole organization experienced it last month as we volunteered in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver in support of several autism spectrum disorder organizations,” said Mark Childs, Chief Brand Officer at Samsung Canada. “Through these experiences, we’ve learned that love is expressed in so many different ways.”
Families living with autism include Canadian Olympic Champion, Silken Laumann, who joins the Look at Me Project campaign as an ambassador. With a 21-year-old daughter on the spectrum, she is a passionate advocate for autism spectrum disorders with a history of support alongside British Columbia’s Pacific Autism Family Network.
“Entering the world of autism 10 years ago through my amazing step-daughter Kilee, I have learned so much. One of the things that has surprised me is how many people have the misconception that those on the spectrum can’t emotionally connect,” said Silken Laumann. “Our daughter may touch my cheek and smile, another child may pass you their favourite toy, but the emotion behind the act is the same – I love you. The campaign highlights what we all need to be reminded - we are more the same than we are different.”
As part of the 2017 campaign, Samsung and Autism Speaks Canada will be donating 500 of the newest Samsung tablets, the Galaxy Tab S3, pre-loaded with the Samsung Look at Me app to families and organizations across Canada living and working with autism. Canadians are invited to visit samsung.com/lookatme and autismspeaks.ca from October 3rd to November 3rd, 2017, to apply to receive one of the 500 Samsung tablets pre-loaded with the Look at Me app. Continuing on a journey of learning, in early 2018 Samsung Canada with Autism Speaks Canada and Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital will share the results of an ongoing research study into the impact of technology on children and families living with autism.
“The Learn the Love Spectrum campaign sparks a conversation that we hope will highlight what it’s like for children and families living with autism. We are so proud to be part of this initiative, and look forward to it creating even more understanding and acceptance of people living with autism spectrum disorder,” said Jill Farber, Executive Director, Autism Speaks Canada.
About ‘Look At Me’ Application
Developed by Samsung with a multidisciplinary team of clinical psychologists, cognitive psychologists and psychiatrists, the Samsung Look at Me app can help children with autism improve their ability to make eye contact and interpret facial expressions through an engaging, interactive and fun experience. Available for free download on the Google Play Store, the Look at Me app has been downloaded over 10,000 times since launch in January 2015.
About Samsung Electronics Canada Inc.
Samsung Electronics Canada inspires Canadians to reach their full potential through a transformative ecosystem of products and services that deliver innovation and distinct design to every aspect of their connected lives. The company is redefining the worlds of TVs, smartphones, virtual reality and wearable devices, tablets and digital appliances. In 2017, Samsung was ranked No. 6 in Interbrand’s "Best Global Brands" list. Dedicated to helping make a difference in the lives of Canadians, Samsung's award-winning Hope for Children corporate giving initiatives supports public education, sustainability and health-related issues in communities across the country. To discover more, please visit www.samsung.com.
About Autism Speaks Canada
Autism Speaks Canada is dedicated to promoting solutions, across the spectrum and throughout the life span, for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. We do this by supporting and working alongside the autism community; increasing understanding and acceptance of individuals living with autism spectrum disorder; and advancing research into causes and better interventions for autism spectrum disorder and related conditions. We empower people with autism and their families by enhancing services, developing resources, online tools and information covering the life span. To find resources, join a fundraising walk or make a donation, go to www.autismspeaks.ca.
About Autism Spectrum Disorder
Autism spectrum disorder or autism, refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviours, speech and nonverbal communication. We now know that there is not one autism but many subtypes, and each person with autism can have unique strengths and challenges. Causes include a combination of genetic and environmental influences, and many are accompanied by medical issues such as GI disorders, seizures and sleep disturbances. It is estimated that 1 in 68 children is on the autism spectrum.
For further information: Katelin Onishi, North Strategic Public Relations, Katelin.firstname.lastname@example.org