Boy with autism sells his toys to send friend to New Zealand

Ryan's friend Darryl, who has Down syndrome, is a black belt in taekwondo

A Burnaby boy on the autism spectrum gave up his beloved toys to help a friend pursue his dreams.

Ryan, 9, sold his toys at the Kidstuff Sale at Bonsor Recreation Centre recently, raising $845. The money will help pay for his friend Darryl’s trip to New Zealand for the Special Needs Taekwondo Games.

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Ryan and Darryl, who has Down syndrome, are members of the same taekwondo studio.  

“It was amazing how the community came together to support the initiative,” Ryan’s mom, Wendy Kyer wrote in an email. “People were touched by the fact that a nine-year-old boy on the autism spectrum was willing to sell his toys to help a friend.” 

Darryl is a great inspiration to Ryan, Kyer said.

“He has a black belt in taekwondo, which is an amazing feat for most people, but especially so for a young person with the challenges that Down syndrome bring,” she said. “Darryl is a great example not only for my son but for all of us on what you can achieve if you put your mind to it.”

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