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Our Journey

Because Jake is my fourth child, I knew in my heart that there was something unique about him. When he was 18 months, my husband and I took him to a local Early Intervention Services. The evaluation was unsettling at best — he was developmentally delayed in ALL areas...

— Click to read more about Jake —

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Autism is one of the fastest-growing learning and developmental disabilities in the United States: a child is diagnosed every 20 minutes. Autism costs Americans close to $40 billion per year — a figure that underscores the extreme need for further funding, research, and awareness about autism.

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Ian's Story

Ian's Story

My sweet little man Ian just turned three in September. We found out yesterday that he had autism. He was fast on all of his milestones until he turned two. He had literally just stopped learning. He was picking up on words like a champ, but could not put them in sentences, and it was so frustrating for him not to be able to communicate with me.

I didn't think it was a big deal. I figured he just learned at a slower pace than most kids. The doctor told us at two that he was showing all the signs of it, and I completely ignored him and all the help they offered. I didn't want to believe that my child would ever go through this. I was hesitant to tell people, figuring they would judge or be mean to him, or treat him differently. But I have been reading everyone's stories, and you all have helped me so much through this process because I was scared not knowing what to do.

We do go through the HORRIBLE tantrums. He rocks constantly. He has one favorite toy and that's his woody doll, and he can not literally go anywhere without him. He lines things up and will throw horrific fits if anything is slightly moved. He is so brilliant though — he can work puzzles that are for five year olds. We are now starting the process for his speech and we will just take it day by day.

Whitney, Bluff City, TN

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Help Find a Lost Child with Autism
Children on the spectrum engage in many behaviors that can be incredibly stressful to their families, but among the most stressful is wandering, "eloping", or bolting — that is, leaving a safe space without the knowledge of caregivers. Donations through this Gift That Gives More™ provide one month of a locating service via the FOUND program, using a wristband transmitter, to a family with a child with autism. Thank you!
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