Many of the services children with autism desperately need are not covered by insurance and are very expensive. As a result, many families, especially military families, cannot afford the goods and services their children need.
In addition, children with autism and special needs are often bullied, underestimated and isolated by others. There is no recreational center in the community where parents can take their children with special needs to be themselves, have fun, connect with others in similar situations, and relax in a judgement free environment.
A third problem affecting the autism community is that once children finish their education, there are very few places for them to work, make money, and feel like contributing members of society.
Mission Autism Support, Inc. was founded to help families affected by autism. This organization is not focused on finding the cause or cure for autism, but rather provide a long term solution to help those impacted by autism.
Mission Autism Support is dedicated to giving back to the autism/special needs community. Our three main goals are: 1) help provide financial assistance to military families that can not afford services that are not covered by insurance, 2) create a safe environment where children with special needs can play and learn without judgement or ridicule and 3) create a working environment where young adults and adults with special needs can work and contribute to their community.
THE BATTLE PLAN
Our most immediate goal is to provide financial assistance to military families for autism related services that they cannot afford such as:
- One Defeat Autism Now! (DAN!) doctor's visit paid in full
- One month supply of supplements for treating autism
- One ABA, Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, or Physical Therapy session paid in full
- Autism Conference admission fee paid in full
- Autism related computer software
- Autism related educational materials (flashcards, workbooks, etc.)
Ultimately, we envision a recreational center that will be used year-round, regardless of the weather. It will house an indoor playground and will be used for:
- Social camps during school breaks run by ABA Therapists
- After school programs like Tae Kwon Do, group piano lessons, dance, art lessons, and social groups taught by trained special needs instructors
- Open play sessions using indoor playground
- Sensory friendly movie nights
- Parent support groups and educational seminars
- Teen nights/dances
- Life skills classes
- Quiet room with computer-based auditory processing programs, a lending library, Therapeutic Listening Station and Interactive Metronome stations
The recreational center will be dedicated to making the lives of special needs children and their parents a little easier. We intend to create a "safe haven" where our children:
- Are valued and appreciated
- Able to build their confidence and learn new skills
- Are better prepared to become active/contributing members of the community
We will purchase farmland that will be used to train and employ young adults with autism and other special needs. The Polk County community will have access to purchase goods (e.g., organic fruits, vegetables, eggs, etc.) from the farm. In addition, the young adults employed by the farm will host a weekly market where the local community can purchase fresh produce, plants, flowers, and handcrafted items.
The young adults will be taught:
- Farming skills
- Money management skills
- Social skills/teamwork
- Sales/marketing skills
- Order processing
- Planning/organizational skills
Employment with the farm will give the young adults a sense of pride and ownership and will enable them to be active and contributing members of the Polk County community.