Rosie Morris is five years old and severely autistic. She still has virtually no speech and depends on her parents Andy and Kara entirely. This is their story.

Andy and Kara have developed a staggeringly positive attitude to combatting their daily challenges. They see Rosie's autism as "beautiful and magical".

An estimated one in 130 people in Europe have a condition on the autistic spectrum. Andy and Kara were told by doctors that Rosie faced a "lifelong developmental disability" - but they refused to accept it. After unsuccessful experiences with a state 'special school', they began searching for alternatives.

Finally they discovered the Florida-based Growing Minds programme, run by behaviour analyst Steven Wertz, who promised a hybrid tailored to Rosie's needs - insisting that autism is not incurable. After a tough year of fund-raising, the family set off for Florida.

During the trip Andy and Kara made many discoveries, about themselves as well as Rosie. By the end of the week, they were seeing an ordinary child, wilful, spirited and often manipulative. Ironically their desire to preserve her 'perfect' world was holding back her development and, ultimately, their own lives.

Source: Al Jazeera