HAMPSHIRE is being urged to 'go blue' to help raise awareness for the thousands of people living with autism in the county.

Schoolchildren, churches and businesses are being challenged to join in with iconic landmarks across the world, including the Empire State Building, and shine a light on the condition by opting to go blue for World Autism Day.

Currently around 16,000 people in Hampshire have been diagnosed with autism, around 7,000 of those children, and Autism Hampshire hope that the Light It Up Blue campaign will boost awareness of the condition and what it means for families living with it. So whether it is a blue-themed party, wearing something blue to work day or hosting a blue cup cake sale, the charity wants as many as possible to join in on April 2.

Gill Watson, Autism Hampshire volunteer and parent of a son with autism, said: “World Autism Awareness Day is a fantastic way to get people thinking about autism but also to have fun while supporting such an important cause that is close to so many people’s hearts.”

To get involved call Hannah Godfrey on 01489 880881.