April Coachella Valley Spotlight recipient: Autism Society Inland Empire
April's Coachella Valley Spotlight grant of $25,000 goes to the Autism Society Inland Empire.
The local nonprofit creates connections and aims to empower everyone in the Autism community with the resources they need to live fully.
According to the organization, 1 in 26 children in California are now diagnosed with Autism. More than 1700 families in the Coachella Valley have a loved one with Autism.
Children with Autism often have challenging behaviors, including aggression and tantrums, and sensory sensitivities, which cause families to experience exclusion in their community and isolation. The nonprofit works to ensure children with Autism have safe places to express creativity, achieve and master new skills, opportunities to practice social skills and physical aptitude, and increase self-confidence.
With the support of a $25,000 grant, ASIE can provide four fun-filled, accepting Summer Family events in the Coachella Valley. The events allow families to come together in a safe, supportive environment to enjoy local attractions and enable families to experience bowling, pool parties and picnics, and sensory-friendly movies.
ASIE provides several critical services for children and adults with Autism, and their families, across the lifespan. The Summer family events bring more than 500 special needs children and their family members together for special adaptive family experiences in a safe and supportive environment.
The board re-evaluates its programs yearly to ensure it offers model services that meet identified gaps.
Some of the programs/activities include:
- Education & Outreach:
- Empowering families to make informed decisions about their healthcare and support needs.
- Information & Referral Services:
- Guiding families through a new diagnosis or a tough spot in their lives.
- Recreation & Family Support:
- Helping fill a need of acquiring and practicing play, communication, and social skills in a safe environment through art, music, dance, exercise, social groups, family events, and other special interest groups.
- Basic Needs:
- Scholarships and financial support for food, medical expenses, etc.