The Friendship Circle support group for special needs children hosts walk Sept. 1

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It's hard not to get choked up for Christian Cser.

"When you were there, there was nothing to hide, everybody was in the same boat, they had kids that were older and you saw this community and what they are doing here, is beyond religion, and it's people helping people," said Cser.

The father of three is shedding tears of relief and gratitude for a group that spans the country and that started here in Metro Detroit. The Friendship Circle.

He, along with his wife Renee have been raising 10-year-old Nicholas, and his two siblings Avery and Brody. Nicholas has autism and sees life from a different lens. Sometimes not even right side up. It's been a challenge but a gift, albeit, a lonely one at times.  

"(It is) very lonely sometimes to be a parent of a special needs child and when that happens, that is just like a breath of fresh air, you feel camaraderie and you feel understood," she said.

Renee is talking about is being in the company of other parents who understand. Who get it, in a way that no one else would.  

The Friendship Circle offers camps, and resources to families dealing with a special needs child.

"We've been on vacations with other families and it just opened doors that says we can do this," she said. "And so let's focus on this and make this our main Charity to open the world to other kids were we were six years ago and it's scary." 

Scary - but fear that's quelled by meeting with others from the Friendship Circle.  

"It's not just for the kids with special needs, it's for the families, the siblings and the parents - the community that's been created for us," Renee said. "Just to get a doctor's recommendation, or who is seeing a psychologist? And you get quality recommendations from people that you know and trust and develop relationships with." 

The Friendship Circle has an annual walk happening Sunday. The hope is to get thousands out there supporting families of those with challenges like the ones Nicholas has. 

He may not say a lot. But his laughter and his uncanny ability to recognize five languages on his iPad - tells you he's brilliant in many ways.  

Kids like Nicholas hope you'll come support him.  

The creator of the Friendship Circle is excited about the upcoming walk which picks up steam every year. 

"We are a home away from home for them, their children, a place where they can feel comfortable and supported.  Come out and help us do that," said Bassie Shemtov.

Friendship Circle Walk is happening Sept. 1 at Temple Israel, 5725 Walnut Lake Road, West Bloomfield. Participating families are asked to get there by 10:30 a.m. for parking because the lot fills quickly.

For more information on the Friendship Circle, CLICK HERE.