Chauvet Goes Blue for World Autism Awareness Day
Chauvet, having teamed up with PLSN editor and noted lighting designer Nook Schoenfeld, is going blue in a bid to recognise today as World Autism Awareness Day and to help fight the disorder that affects an estimated 52 million people across the globe.
Chauvet, a major manufacturer of lighting equipment for mobile DJs - as well as nightclubs, concert tours and other applications - began lighting its UK, Belgium and US headquarter facilities in bright royal blue from Monday (30th of March), kicking off the week leading up to todays World Autism Awareness Day.
A long-time advocate of autism research and care, it was Schoenfeld who turned Chauvet on to the idea: The organisation Autism Speaks came up with the idea of lighting landmark buildings blue on Autism Awareness Day to raise awareness of the disorder, he said. Ive been a big supporter throughout. On a personal level, Schoenfeld has persuaded touring artists including Kid Rock and John Legend to turn their stages blue to raise autism awareness. He was also influential in getting the upper floors of the Empire State Building illuminated in blue for the same cause as part of the Light It Up Blue campaign a few years back. This year, he decided to bring the effort closer to home and involve the lighting industry directly.
It seemed very natural to me, explained Schoenfeld. As an industry were all about lighting, and this event is built on lighting. So I figured why doesnt our industry light itself to raise autism awareness? I brought this up to some friends at Chauvet and they were all over the idea.
In the hope of encouraging others to do the same, the Chauvet team decided to illuminate a number of their buildings' features in blue, while also displaying the Autism Awareness logo in GOBO form. When we learned about this from Nook, we knew instantly that we wanted to participate, said Berenice Chauvet, Vice President of Chauvet. Every year more families are affected by autism, so we did not want to sit idly by.
Across the pond, the prevalence of autism among children has increased by almost 120 percent since 2000 (according to the latest figures from the US Centre for Disease Control), making it the fastest-growing developmental disability in the country. Were hoping that by raising awareness, we can help raise funds for research and care so that one day autism will disappear, Chauvet said. It would be nice for all of us to know that the lighting industry played a part in achieving this victory.
World Autism Awareness Day and Light It Up Blue are sponsored by Autism Speaks. For more information visit: www.autismspeaks.org.