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Testimonials About ASDF

If you have a personal story to share about ASDF programs or partners, or how autism has affected your life, we would love to hear it. Please submit your story here.

“Christmas. It allowed us to actually buy much needed shoes and coats as well as some gifts for the kids. We live on an extremely tight budget with really no room for Christmas presents. Instead of just trying to live day by day, we can actually celebrate this year.” ~Parent of an autistic child

 

“Our grandson Aidan is 4 years old and he is on the Autism Spectrum. Communicating his wants and needs continues to be a roadblock for him. When I heard of the Autism Spectrum Disorder Foundation and their program to help children on the spectrum by supplying iPads. I contacted the foundation but was told that the year’s allotment of iPads had already been distributed. Several weeks later I received an email from the foundation informing me that a new supply of iPad mini’s was expected and I would be able to apply for one by sending Aidan’s diagnosis. I immediately responded and within 10 days Aidan had his iPad mini. It is hard to express in words the difference this is making in Aidan’s learning. Aidan’s vocabulary and his ability to express his wants, needs, and feelings is improving already. Thank you to the ASDF and its generous donors for providing this learning tool for our child and other children on the spectrum. It is truly a great blessing to see your child make the connections necessary to have a future. We are very grateful for this opportunity for our grandson. I will be donating the money I saved for Aidan’s iPad to the foundation to benefit other children.” ~Denise Myers, grandparent of autistic child; Rochester, PA

 

“I had assumed he’d go on a wait list and it would take some time. But wow. We received Carson’s iPad today. Our church will be assisting us in purchasing the avidtalk program to assist Carson in his vocal skills. We have an appointment next week with the county board of education and we will be requesting that the iPad be included in his IEP for communication purposes. You have no idea how much of a burden this will lift off my shoulder knowing Carson will have the technology to communicate. I was actually in tears when I opened the mailbox. Thank you so much. You have blessed our family. All our love and support.” ~ Brooke and Carson A., parents of an autistic child

 

“Dear Michael, There is an incredible world out there for therapy style apps.  Heather is having a fabulous time reviewing her loaded ipad.  She is coming out of her shell.  She has found an app for Charades. (truly as shocker)  She is talking and acting out the Disney characters-once with a stranger in the doctor’s office waiting room.   I never dreamed she would open up like this. Thanks so much.” ~Dawn, parent of an autistic child

 

“Dear Michael, I am so grateful to ASDF for choosing my daughter Sai as an iPad recipient. Sai is autistic with very minimal speech. With her new iPad, she now has unlimited resources at her fingertips that will not only help her with her communication needs but also help her understand and visualize everyday activities that she comes across at school and home. Thank you so much for taking interest in the lives of so many special people. Your organization is making a difference in the lives of many. Will keep you posted on Sai’s progress.”

~Yatta Sallah, parent of an autistic child

 

“I want to take this opportunity to thank the ASDF for their outstanding contributions, attention andParker_Autism_012214 support of the Parker Autism Foundation. Our small grassroots foundation has been blessed by the support of the ASDF. The gift cards and Camp Dakota transportation van are just a few of the generous and meaningful ways the ASDF had allowed many of our dreams and our children’s dreams (those afflicted with ASD) come true. The ASDF gave us hope and the means to celebrate our sons and daughters. The ASDF’s generous support (both emotional and substantive) have made an enormous positive impact. THANK YOU…..THANK YOU.” ~Carmela; Waxhaw, NC

 

“My children love Camp Dakota because they go on field trips and get to ride in ‘the big van.’ Also Christmas was truly a blessed event with all the ‘goodies’ we received from the Parker Autism Foundation that is also supported through the wonderful Autism Spectrum Disorder Foundation. We are very grateful to you guys. Thanks again and happy New Year to you all who work so hard to help so many!!!” ~Nancy, mother of an autistic child;  Charlotte, NC

 

“Thanks so much for including us in your Holiday Gift Card Program. It is heart breaking looking back through the financial applications. I have several families who make under $10k a year, some on disabilities, some in foster care….It is a privilege to be a part of your great work.” ~Misti Moxley, Executive Director, Camp Odakoda ASD Oregon; Clackamas, OR

 

“Hi Mr. Slutsky, When I look at Micah each day using his iPad and learning new words and how to verbally express himself to others, this brings me joy just to know that people like you and your organization really care about others with special needs children. I am a single mother living on a paraprofessional’s salary with a mortgage and car note pay while  making sure that I can buy him food without food stamps because I don’t qualify. I am late every month with my mortgage and utilities because Micah has needs that have to be met and even though I can’t buy him anything for Christmas that iPad made things ok for him. I just want to thank you and everyone in your organization and continue to be blessed.” ~Tabitha D., mother of an autistic child

 

“Fernando did receive his Ipad.  A big thank you from the De la Cruz Family. They came to the office yesterday very happy.  Her child will benefit from this.  Once again thank you very much for bringing happiness to this family. Thank you for what you do to this special children.” ~Juanita Palafox Brownsville, TX

 

“I contacted your wonderful foundation about 3 months ago about my child being a 9 years of age autistic child whom had been nonverbal for 8 years of his life until a year ago. Since just recently receiving an iPad from ASDF my son just sang his first holiday song because there was an app with different holidays. To say the least he sang ‘Jingle Bells’ and danced to his own beat, we were so happy to see him excited about his accomplishments. This gift from ASDF is such a blessing in his life and I pray that the Lord will bless me one day to pay this forward. Also his speech is improving each day. Thank you and continue to be blessed.” ~Tabitha C., mother of an autistic child; Texarkana, TX

 

Happy Camper Aut Proj 13“Hello Jan and Michael,We had such an amazing time at camp this summer! Your camperships were a tremendous help. Thank you again. We really could not do our programming without your support.” ~Joanne G. Quinn, Executive Director, The Autism Project; Johnston, RI

 

“Dear Michael, On behalf of Equine Assisted Therapy, we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your recent donation to support our rider scholarship for patrick Olsson. It is only through the generosity of donors like you that enable us to achieve our mission of improving the quality of life for people with disabilities through innovative equestrian activities.” ~Karen Sanchez, Founder and Executive Director, Equine Assisted Therapy; Centerburg, OH

 

“Hi Mr. Slutsky, Thank you, thank you, thank you. Micah received his iPad today and he was really excited. This is going to help his world open up, and you and your foundation are such a blessing to children like mine. I will keep you informed about his progress. Thank you for being a blessing for my son.” ~Tabitha D., mother of an autistic child

 

“Dear Mr. Slutsky: On behalf of The Arrow Center for Education Tangram, I would like to express our appreciation of the donation of 10 iPads to our program. Our students will benefit from the ability to access these devices in a variety of ways. There are many educational apps that have been developed to support particular curriculum goals in many areas including reading, math, science and others. Additionally, daily living skills such as making a grocery list or searching for where to purchase a particular product can be integrated into student schedules. Many of our students enjoy using technology and the iPads provide additional incentive to participate in particular activities. We look forward to continuing to utilize these devices to enhance the educational opportunities of the students at Tangram.” ~Beth Plumb, Principal, Arrow Child & Family Ministries; Baltimore, MD

 

Josiah Summer Camp Pic

“Good morning! My husband and I wanted  to say a big Thank You for giving us a grant for Camp. Josiah enjoyed himself. He went bowling for the first time. He did excellent! Thanks for making this experience possible for him. ” ~The Coffmans, parents of an autistic child

 

 “Michael-we created this for all our donors and I wanted to be sure you saw it and see the amazing thing you help make possible!

‘Dear friends of Autism Pensacola, You made another great summer learning lab possible! Because of your support at our 10th annual Connecting the Pieces gala event, our campers are enjoying a fun learning experience—going on right now!  Watch the short video below to see the smiles you helped put on the faces of our campers, staff, and volunteers.

Thank you for making a difference!! ‘” ~Susan Byram, Executive Director, Autism Pensacola; Pensacola, FL

 

“Michael, Thank you  so very much for your generous contribution to camp this year.  We are excited that your gift will cover tuition costs for 23 of our campers!  Because of ASDF theses students with autism will be engaged in highly effective learning opportunities during the four weeks of camp.  Thank you!” ~Susan Byram, Executive Director, Autism Pensacola; Pensacola, FL

 

“Good morning! Just wanted to share that the Ipad just arrived!  I will be presenting it to Sayveion later this evening and I know he will be so excited.  We are looking forward to pairing with his school team and seeing the results in his educational progress as well!  Thank you so very much, your organization is simply amazing and I will never forget what you have done for this young boy.” ~Allison F., foster care social worker; Somerset County, MD

 

“We received the iPad & are so grateful to you and your organization. I took it in to Margaret Mary’s school today & they’re making a list of apps that they think will be beneficial. We’re excited to get started using it, especially over the summer.” ~ Jim and Peg H., parents of an autistic child;  Bellbrook, OH

 

“Thank you so much for your donation of the 10 iPads! I was so thrilled when I spoke with Tracie! I appreciate you taking the time to speak with Tracie to hear about Tangram and what we are hoping to build. Again, I am so appreciative of your support!” ~ Beth P, Principal of special education day school;  Townson, MD

 

“It means so much to have your support as we embark on this new endeavour.  We are thrilled to have your support of 10 iPads for our new Autism Program. As a parent, I would like to thank you personally for all of your efforts to support children and families living with autism.  It is amazing to see how many lives your foundation has touched.” ~ Tracie F., staff member at special education day school;  Townson, MD

 

“Oh my goodness! Thank you, thank you! Thank you for supporting children with ASD to attend Camp Yakety Yak in Oregon, even though we are a relatively new camp and so far away from you. I am humbled by this donation and know that it will be appreciated by four very deserving children and their caring families. Again, the Camp Yakety Yak Board of Directors are going to be so grateful for this donation to our scholarship program. It is hard to put into words exactly what this means to us. Thank you again!” ~Angela Arterberry, Camp Director, Camp Yakety Yak; Lake Oswego, OR

 

“Last year your foundation so generously sent one of my students an iPad. To say that iPad changed his life is such an understatement. I got to watch my non-verbal student who showed little interest or motivation in anything transform before me eyes. His fine motor skills exploded… For the first time, using his finger on the iPad, then a pencil, he wrote his whole first name independently. That might seem like a small task for a boy of 11, but I watched with tears. I completely credit the iPad for helping him to find his voice. I wrote to thank your foundation and again was blown away by the generosity when you were able to send my classroom another iPad to use. I hate to make a other request, but my student went on to middle school and rightfully took the iPad with him. He had found his voice and needed to take it with him. My students are now sharing the iPad. If you ever get any more iPads in, please consider us!  Thank you so much and God bless your work.” ~Amy S., teacher of an autistic student; Dubuque, IA

 

“I am so grateful for you and myASDF.org! You are an organization that gives funds directly to people living with autism. We are so very grateful for the difference you have made, and continue to make, for those living with autism. Through your gift card program, you made Christmas possible for 10 families who didn’t have ANY plans for Christmas last year. Through your camp scholarships, you have funded the chance for children to play and learn in the summer who would otherwise have been regressing over the summer. And now your sponsorship gift for Flying High will inspire and challenge 15 parents who will learn to believe that anything is possible for their children! Thank you is not enough—but we are so very grateful!! You and myASDF.org are difference makers! All the best!” ~Susan Byram, Executive Director, Autism Pensacola; Pensacola, FL

 

“Thank you so very much for your sponsorship of our Flying High Conference this coming May! Your $5000 donation will enable at least 15 parents to attend all three days of this remarkable gathering of leaders who have overcome autism. Parents will be given hope and inspiration as they see what is possible for those living with autism.

Because of the leadership of our local expert, Anita Lesko, we are hosting so many wonderful adults with autism at this event with the purpose of showing the world all that is possible for those with autism. The biggest criticism I have had about the conference is that it is simply out of reach for many parents who live right here in our area. The cost is based on what we will have to pay to get these remarkable people here, but as you know, so many families with autism have many, many extra financial burdens. Your gift will make their dream of hearing Temple Grandin and others like her come true! Thank you so much!” ~Susan Byram, Executive Director, Autism Pensacola; Pensacola, FL

“I don’t know exactly who you folks are, but I would like to thank you for the gift card for Trenton, well, for the whole family. Trent got an iPod and some clothes; he enjoys the wifi places we go to with it. Trenton’s mom passed away in 2009, it’s been hard for him. I don’t know if he fully understands it or maybe he does. Sometimes he just sobs and says Mama. Anyways I want you to know that your generous gift has brought him joy. Thanks again and Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!” ~William D., father of an autistic child; Bloomingville, Ohio

 

“To the wonderful, amazing ‘Secret Santa.’ Thank you, thank you! For your generous gift!! My children experienced a very special Christmas thanks to you! We will never forget it!” ~The Light family

 

“Thank you so much for the Target gift card. it made our Christmas much brighter. We plan to purchase a new camera to document our family’s journey together. Thank you.” ~Dawn & Eugene M. and family

 

“Hi Michael, Jan, and the ASDF. I want to thank you for the swim lessons and for the gift card. Your foundation is wonderful to our family and without you, we wouldn’t have much of a Christmas for Tristan this year. Tristan is excited about swimming again. Thanks for all that you do. You are wonderful people and I can’t say enough about ASDF! ~Greta S.; Hobart, IN

 

“Thank you so much for the holiday gift card provided to our family by you and your organization! Your generosity has already brightened our holidays. It has been a difficult year and the lift of spirits is as much as the gift card. Bless you all!” ~Susan and Tim B.; Hobart, IN

 

“Thank you, we appreciate all you did for us to get the holiday gift card for my son. We bought him some toys and a trampoline to bounce on. Merry Christmas.” ~ Ned, Analiza, Jayden and Elise W.; Hobart, IN 

 

 “The check for Jason Walker for the Go Talk Nine device and the therapist was received, and we have set up the therapy sessions. Thank you again for all you do!” ~Tami Burt, Advisor/Camp Director, FACES Camp; Monroe, GA

 

“Thank you so much for making the Holidays brighter for those with autism in our area!!” ~Susan Byram, Executive Director, Autism Pensacola Pensacola, FL

 

“We appreciate all the help you and the ASDF has given us over the years. We are thankful your Foundation is around for families like ours. Thanks Michael!” ~ Greta S.; Merrillville, IN 

 

“Hi Michael, The $500 walmart gift card was very helpful. I was able to buy food and two big boxes of diapers. I also bought my son some school clothes and a Thomas book that makes noise and it came with a small train, which is his favorite. It was truly a blessing and I really appreciate your help. Janet helped direct me to where to get my son a physical at a discounted price so he can began his early learning program. You guys are the greatest and I’m very thankful!” ~ Quazola S.; Detroit, MI 

 

“We are very proud to be a partner with ASDF on the Holiday Gift Card Program and cannot say enough about the good you do for families.” ~Morten Haugland, Ph.D., President and CEO, Haugland Learning Center; Columbus, OH

 

“Thanks for supporting Autism Pensacola and our Kids for Camp program. My oldest son William is 10 and this is his sixth summer at camp. My youngest son Mathew is 5 and this is his third year. If it wasn’t for camp, my boys would not be able to make progeress in the summer. Thank you for your support.” ~Relena A.; Pensacola, FL 

 

“This was Aiden’s first year at Kids for Camp. Before camp Aiden did not have much purposeful communication. He mainly tugged, grabbed, or handed items to you when he wanted something. During camp he learned a handful of signs and is now signing them independently. This is a HUGE step in Aiden’s communicaiton. Mom, Dad and sister can now expand on these signs after camp.

Our family is very appreciative of your generous donation so Aiden could attend camp. Without you, this may have not happened. Thank you for making a positive impact in Aiden’s life. ” ~Aiden I. & Family; Pensacola, FL 

 

“Thank you so much for your donation to Autism Pensacola. Your gift enables us to support the needs of those living with autism in our area. Our intensive summer learning lab, Kids for Camp, is only possible because of the generosity of donors like you. What a blessing it is to have a community that supports us and all those working to further our mission. Thank you so very much, Michael! We are very grateful. Thank you for making a difference for those living with autism.” ~Susan Byram, Executive Director, Autism Pensacola; Pensacola, FL 

 

“Our son Michael attended the Joey Travolta Film School for at least 3 years and it had an enormous impact on his outlook for the future. The first year he was allowed to use actual cameras, and the second year I remember you let him segment. Michael graduated from high school and was accepted to one of our state universities in Michigan, Grand Valley State University. Michael went on to get acceptable grades his freshman year, but he had not given up his dream of going to his first choice of colleges, Emerson College in Boston, MA.

He is now an accepted transfer student to Emerson College in Boston, MA! His major is Film Production. I just wanted to let you know how he is doing, and that the Joey Travolta Film School had results that are still playing out each day. Thank you so much!” ~The Doppel Family; Michigan 

 

“Thank you so much! Your generous support of our film camp is without question the highlight of 50 campers this year…only 14 are new and the rest of them are all returning, for some it marks their 7th year!! I am so very grateful for your continued support in helping us improve the quality of life for those impacted by ASD at OUCARES.” ~Kathy Sweeney, Director, OUCARES; Rochester, MI

 

“My wife Melody, Alex and I want to thank you so much for sponsoring Alex’s camp experience this summer at Isanogel Camp. It was such an amazing blessing to her and I, and Alex had a great time. He really loves to swim and he got to do a lot of that while he was there. His counselors seemed like very genuine people and he received several hugs from them on the day we picked him up to bring him home. Again, we wanted to thank you so very much. We believe he must have had a really great time because as we pulled away from the camp he was looking out the van window waving goodbye, which is not the norm for his behavior.” ~Brian and Melody W., parents of an autistic child who received a camp scholarship; Indiana 

 

“After Evan met a few kids in his group this morning, he pulled me aside and whispered, ‘Thanks Mommy. I finally get to hang out with kids who are like me. Aren’t these guys great?’ I cried when I got back to my car. In 10 minutes, your camp has given him what he’s been craving for so long. A sense of belonging. There is no way I can thank you enough.” ~Kayla, her son Evan attended Autism Pensacola’s Kids for Camp in 2011

 

“The Autism Spectrum Disorder Foundation (ASDF) is a close friend and supporter of Haugland Learning Center (HLC). The foundation provided scholarships to students who would otherwise be unable to attend summer camp. Over the past 3 years, 20 students attended HLC camp because of the generosity of ASDF.” ~Morten Haugland, Ph.D., President and CEO, Haugland Learning Center; Columbus, OH

 

“We have a wonderful partnership with ASDF to make seemingly impossible dreams come true and help improve not only the individual with autism’s quality of life but that family’s as well. We’re proud of the many ASD programs we provide and fortunate to be able to partner with ASDF.” ~Kathy Sweeney, Director, OUCARES; Rochester, MI

 

“Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!! How can I ever express my true gratitude for this unbelievable opportunity. I don’t have the words to begin to tell you how I feel right now. Happy, grateful, excited, overwhelmed, and relieved…just to name a few. You have, once again, given Ryan and opportunity to learn, socialize, and grow in and unbelievable camp setting. This is an opportunity of a lifetime for him. Thanks a million!” ~Lorren R., mother of an autistic child who received a camp scholarship; Baltimore, MD

 

“Mr. Slutsky, I just wanted to write a quick thank you note to you for providing such a generous gift to my son. Your awesome donation is greatly appreciated! Autism Pensacola and I thank you! God bless you!” ~Yolanda R., mother of an autistic child; Pensacola, FL

 

“What an exciting time we had delivering the gift cards! The family that has three children with autism and both parents are deaf cannot quit saying thank you. What a beautiful gift you gave to these families!” ~Tami Burt, Advisor/Camp Director, FACES Camp; Monroe, GA

 

“ASDF’s generous donation helped bring joy to many Michigan families last Christmas. I am still meeting parents that received a gift card telling me what a wonderful difference it made to their families during the holiday season.” ~Kathy Sweeney, Director, OUCARES; Rochester, MI

 

“All my children have been through so much with the loss of their mother in recent years, but it’s been especially difficult for Trenton who struggles to understand and communicate. This generous gift from the Foundation not only helps us financially but also lets us know that we are not alone in our effort to provide for Trenton’s needs. I’m so glad there are people out there who care.” ~William D., father of an autistic child; Bloomingville, Ohio

 

“I am so surprised I got chosen for the $500 gift card. It was an answer to prayer because I was praying and praying that I could get a Wii to use at my house when I am alone. I also got some clothes and the pasta bakes that I can make by myself. I can’t thank you enough. I will never forget that Christmas. It was the best Christmas I ever had!” ~Rod S., an autistic adult; Georgia

 

OUCARES is proud to run many programs that improve the quality of life for individuals and their families affected by ASD. Our film camp is the most popular program we offer, and ASDF helps make the cost of camp affordable. Without the generosity of ASDF and our other partner, we would have to almost double the tuition of the camp, which would place yet another hardship on families.” ~Kathy Sweeney, Director, OUCARES; Rochester, MI

 

“As a family we would like to thank you for the gift of iPads. No words can express the appreciation and how easy the process was since we are a busy therapy family! Again much appreciation.” ~Frissell and Marlo L.

 

“Again I am so touched by what you have done for Brady. ASDF is my number-one priority and I am so impressed with your organization. Pat S., Brady’s mom, cried when I told her about this. Thank you the bottoms of our hearts!” ~Linda H.

 

“I have been able to witness firsthand the impact that the iPads your foundation generously donated to Brady and Mrs. Soppe have had. The one thing that amazes me is watching the students’ reactions when Mrs. Soppe gets out the iPad. Their desire and motivation to learn has increased so dramatically in our students. At this time of year, our students generally start to shut down in anticipation for summer break. But their eyes light up when they see the iPad and all the different learning tools on it. Thank you for your generous donation to Brady and Mrs. Soppe.” ~Tammy F., Special Education Teacher; Dubuque, IA

 

“Thank you for giving our son, Owen, the opportunity to participate in therapeutic riding lessons during summer session. We have seen great improvements in Owen’s fine motor and gross motor skills since he started riding. Just this week, he started riding a bicycle and last week his occupational therapist reported his letter formations and tying are improving. We thank you for your financial support and wanted to share these exciting steps with you. What you are doing is making a difference! Thank you!” ~Jeffrey and Karen L., parents of an autistic child; Ohio

 

“This is Patrick’s first experience riding horses and he is already making huge strides. During his very first lesson a few weeks ago his mother commented that she hadn’t heard Patrick laugh or seen such joy on his face since she could remember! He is learning how to steer the horse, and how to cue the horse to ‘walk on,’ ‘trot,’ and ‘whoa.’ We are using the motivation he gets from the horse to build upon his very limited vocabulary and working on following multi-step directions. We are so proud to be part of this healing process and grateful to organizations like yours who provide financial assistance to make dreams come true.” ~Karen M. Sanchez, Executive Director, Equine Assisted Therapy; Centerburg, Ohio

 

“My part of the Paul J. Lydon Aquatic Center revolves around the swim instruction for three autistic athletes, Ryan, Bella and Alexandra. All three have currently achieved a level of swimming whereby they are competing in Special Olympics. This achievement builds confidence and enhances their social skills. I believe ASDF has enriched the lives of my three swimmers by providing the opportunity to participate, learn and enjoy. It is very obvious to me that each of these swimmers has benefited greatly in their personal, social and athletic lives. They know they can do something that once did not seem possible. I feel privileged to be part of this program. It is a great joy to see how these children have been able to move forward.” ~Charlie Piper, Swim Coach and Private Instructor; Danvers, Massachusetts

“I was immediately concerned for Ryan as he loves water and has never had swimming lessons. I shared my concern for Ryan with the foundation and through the generous donations they receive, they helped fund the swimming lessons so our family could focus on Ryan and not worry about our financial situation. He has taken three lessons so far and is making tremendous progress. Even more priceless is the peace of mind that these lessons have given me since they could save his life someday. The generosity of people like you is the key to unlocking a child’s future. From one parent to another, thank you so much for your kindness.”
~Lisa M., mother of an autistic child;
Massachusetts

Update on Ryan
“Ryan was able to go underwater and tried to swim to the ladder last Friday!!! The instructor was amazed that he was OK with being submerged. He is gaining confidence and it makes me so proud. If it wasn’t for your foundation, he would not have been able to enjoy this weekly experience. Thank you again!”