Lima’s Neurodiverse Picnic Movement: Empowering Peruvians by Breaking Stigma and Abuse – Positive News

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On a sunny day in Lima, Carolina Díaz Pimentel prepares for a picnic in the park with her friends. She takes out red and green tape from her backpack. The guests are encouraged to arrive whenever they can, not make eye contact, and leave if they feel overwhelmed. Díaz Pimentel, a journalist and co-founder of the Peruvian Neurodivergent Coalition (CNP), who is autistic and diagnosed with bipolar disorder, wants everyone to feel comfortable. Each attendee chooses a tape to indicate their “social battery” – green for wanting to participate and red for preferring not to be approached. CNP, formed in March 2023 by five neurodivergent women, aims to create real-world change for neurodivergent Peruvians. They advocate for acceptance and understanding, free from stigma and abuse. Neurodiversity, a movement that began 30 years ago, represents different brain wirings, including autism, dyslexia, and ADHD. Díaz Pimentel, who posted openly about her bipolar disorder in 2017, celebrates her autism diagnosis as a rebirth at age 29. At the picnic, attendees bond over their behavioral traits and feel accepted, unlike in society where they often hide those traits. CNP is influencing government policy and advocating for better treatment methods for neurodivergent individuals. Initiatives like CNP help educate and reach people, shaping a more inclusive society in Peru.

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