Mission Statement: To find resources and support for the adults with autism population, to advocate change for resources that is faltered, and serves as a catalyst to create resources that is non-existing, but greatly needed.
This is Julia Ann Smith, Founder of Families with Autism Spectrum Disorders. I am writing to inform and invite parents and caregivers that have a teenager or adult with autism to take part in our Families with ASD Parent Task Force. My son, Luke, just turned 14 years-old in June. A good friend of mine, Kim Wilson, and I were talking about how in only 4 years he will be 18, and in only 7 years, the schools and Children's Hospital will quit servicing him. Kim's son Sam, is right behind Luke, so we both know the clock is ticking on how little time we have to make sure there are programs in place for our boys. With the huge influx of diagnosis, the adult population with autism is going to skyrocket, taxing the few programs that are out there today.
We can't wait 7 years to find out if there will be something for our children when they grow up. We must start today to ensure that there will be programs available when our children reach that critical age. We need more doctors, and service providers today to service our adults with autism. We need more programs and homes that will be safe for our adults and that will be ready and available for our young adults. These programs will take time to evolve, so we must act now!
So, if you are a parent of a teenager or adult with autism and you are worried or has some concerns about your child/adult with autism and would like to join us on the Families with ASD's Parent Task Force, then please join the Families with ASD's Adults with Autism Task Force. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Families with ASD's Autism Family Resource Center and leave your name, and contact information on the voicemail and we will get back to you as soon as possible. Our number is 513-444-4979.
We will need: Your name, Contact Information (please include a phone number and email address if you have one), Age/Sex of your Child/Adult and their diagnosis. It would also be helpful, but not necessary to also list any of your main concerns you have for your teenager/adult. (Adult Housing/ Adult Income/ Who will care for him/her? How will you pay for services? What Dentist/Gynecologists/Doctor will treat my adult with autism? Who will take care of them when you are gone? (This is my biggest fear. I don't want it all to fall on my other son's shoulders).
Of course the Parents of Adults with Autism Task Force is going to be an ongoing process, but we hope to have the major groundwork completed by December of 2009. Then we will continue to monitor and advocate as needed throughout 2010 and beyond. New businesses will develop, others will leave, so we will have to continue the task force to make sure changes are happening. Also, we know that many older businesses have the "old school" thinking and it may take a few visits from our task force to get them stepping into a new direction. We have the dedicated parents, so it won't be a problem.
While the future of our loved ones can be a very overwhelming, please remember you are not in this alone. By working together as a team, we will be able to make a difference in the lives of our loved ones. Parents of children with autism are the ones that can make this happen. It will take each of us to do our part to help ensure our adults with autism are taken care and offered a chance to succeed and live a happy, fulfilling life. Please consider joining us today.
Contact Families with ASD and ask to speak to Julia about the task force at 513-444-4979 or him at email@example.com if you are interested in joining us.
Julia Ann Smith
Founder of Families with ASD
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