RALEIGH, N.C. – A 9-year-old North Carolina boy’s message to his classmates about autism is going viral.
George Yionoulis is a fourth-grade student at Douglas Elementary School in Raleigh, WTVD reports. As part of a class assignment, the 9-year-old decided to open up about his life with a six-minute video to his classmates, which explained how autism impacts him the most.
“I didn’t speak until I was almost 3 years old. In fact, my parents weren’t sure if I would ever speak at all,” Yionoulis said in the video. “I also tend to take what people say literally. That means, if you say take a seat, you might find one less chair in your classroom.”
Yionoulis’ mother, Lisa Jolley, posted the video on YouTube last week but never thought it would be viewed so many times. But, she said the support has been incredible.
“The feedback we’re getting is ‘I showed this to my 6-year-old who has autism, I showed this to my 12-year-old who has autism and they’re going ‘Me too and we could be friends!'” Jolley said.
Yionoulis did say he “loves” the attention he’s getting from the video.
He said he wants his friends to not be afraid to ask him about his condition because knowledge is power.
As of Wednesday morning, the video has more than 45,700 views.