How two young men broke the mold by using art therapy to help autistic children

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LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A former basketball player and an artist have taken a new approach to treating mental illness and helping kids with autism. 

“Someone once told us, ‘you guys can’t change the world.’ We took that as a bet. So, bet’s on,” said Kenneth Harrison, the co-founder of Aurtism. 

Aurtism stands for art and autism. The facility, which is located at 4880 East Bonanza Road, serves the autistic community. 

Kenneth Harrison is a former basketball player. 

“We wanted to create a headquarters for happiness. So, we decided to come up with Aurtism and use art as a form of therapy to make people happy again,” said Harrison. 

Aurtism isn’t your normal medical facility. It’s full of light and color.

“I’m a Las Vegas native. I’ve been doing art basically all my life,” said Courtney Haywood, the co-founder of Aurtism.  “I just wanted to make it colorful and make it bright and make it a place where, you know, people feel good.”

Haywood is the one who brought their vision to life.

“Everything that you see in this building was hand crafted by him, built by him, painted by him,” Harrison said. 

Together, the two young men have embarked on a mission to give back to their community. 

Harrison and Haywood recently opened another facility in Arizona. They plan to open an art therapy studio in every major city in America. 

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