The 7 Minute Difference

7Did you know that over the next decade, more than 500,000 persons with autism will become adults? And, did you know that 80% of adults with autism younger than 30 years of age reside at home?

Talk to any parent/caregiver and you’ll quickly learn that finding housing supports for adults with ASD is extremely challenging and in many cases impossible. I recognize this challenge as Ryan is 19 and completed high school. I also know that I’m very fortunate to have a great group of young men who work with Ryan at home and that this doesn’t hold true for most families. I wish it did.

Every day I see and talk to parents/caregivers whose children are aging out of the school system. They are worried about what the future will bring.  For this reason I see the importance of speaking out and advocating for all families/caregivers and joining with Autism Speaks as they lead the charge.

How are they doing this?

Autism Speaks is asking both persons with autism 14 years or older, as well parents/caregivers of persons with autism, to complete a survey. This simple seven minute survey asks you what you think your child will need when he or she turns 21 years old.  This data will assist in establishing a national strategic plan for housing. Autism Speaks hopes to receive 10,000 responses by August 9th.

Another survey?

I myself have completed many over the years and wonder when the data from the surveys will become an action plan with funding attached. It is frustrating. However, unless we provide the information there is only anecdotal comments and not substantial data that the Federal Government requires.

I encourage you to complete the survey and we both can watch for the results. As a BNI friend and supporter, Jim Dible, said “We cannot be what we need to be by remaining what we are.”

Let’s join together as we move forward. Take seven minutes to make a difference.

Link to Autism Speaks survey : http://www.autismspeaks.org/housing-survey

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