Here’s a project that reminds me of why I like American local civic organizations so much. The French writer Alexis de Tocqueville touted these groups back in the 1830s and he was quite right to do so: They represent some of the best national characteristics of Americans — compassion, generosity, neighborliness, energy and ingenuity.
Joanne G. Quinn
The Autism Project
THE AUTISM PROJECT AND BRISTOL ROTARY TEAM UP TO OPEN
EAST BAY SUPPORT CENTER
Multiple Community Partners Join Forces to Bring Help Closer to Home for Individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, Their Families and Area Professionals
WARREN, RHODE ISLAND—September 2, 2015 The Autism Project (TAP) and Bristol Rotary Charities Foundation today announced the opening of a new center to serve individuals with an ASD, their families and the many professionals who support and educate them. The Autism Project—East Bay Support Center will open on September 14, 2015.
“With a local office and presence, TAP is now able to provide East Bay residents for the first time with resources and programming designed to help children, teens and adults with ASD find success and independence,” said Joanne Quinn, TAP Executive Director. “By collaborating with Bristol Rotary Charities Foundation and many community organizations, we now have the support to open and operate another office to bring help closer to home.”
“There are several parents of children on the spectrum in Bristol Rotary and, as we were planning where we believed we could best support the community with our new 501c3, we realized that everyone is connected to a family needing ASD support. This, coupled with the realization that our East Bay families had to travel long distances for services, inspired us to launch the project,” said Bruce Cox, President of Bristol Rotary Charities Foundation. “Supporting this project is important to us and to other Rotary Clubs in the East Bay. We created an Advisory Council of community leaders committed to bringing support and resources to the project, and to reflect the community’s commitment to its citizens in need.” The Advisory Council includes representatives from the Town Councils of Bristol, Warren, and Barrington, professionals from Bradley Hospital and The Autism Project, and the education community and business representation from the Bristol Rotary Charities Foundation.
“We have known there was a need for more local access to support and information in the East Bay for a long time. A survey to area families confirmed it. We know there aremany more families to connect with than completed our survey and we will work with the Advisory Council members to continue to get the word out to more families,”commented Joanne Quinn. “The expense to open and run a satellite office was prohibitive. The overwhelming community support and their fund raising efforts will
allow us to help so many more individuals in their own back yard.”
The primary location will be the Highlander Charter School on Rte. 136 in Warren, but training and individual meetings with our Parent Resource Specialists can be scheduled at Mt. Hope High School and the East Bay Chamber of Commerce. These community
partners donated the use of their space. “The Autism Project began as a grassroots organization in 1997” said Ms. Quinn. “It’s
heartwarming to see close to 20 years later that communities in Rhode Island still come together to support our families and children,” Initial hours for The Autism Project—East Bay Support Center are Tuesday 12:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Chamber, Wednesday 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and Thursday 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.at Highlander Charter School and families can schedule meetings with the Parent Resource Specialist on Thursday evenings.
1. According to the CDC, the prevalence of ASD is 1:68. This translates to
approximately 10,000 people in RI and almost 2,000 in the East Bay area.
2. There is a dearth of support in the East Bay for ASD families as they have to
travel difficult distances to get the resources they need and it is often expensive.
3. On 7/14/15 an agreement was signed between The Autism Project and Bristol
Rotary Charities Foundation to work together in a fundraising effort toward a
target of $40,000 per year for a minimum of two years and to get the Support
Center operational by mid-September. The center will be called The Autism
Project—East Bay Support Center.
4. Fundraising was kicked off two weeks ago and the first private donation of
$10,000 came from John Andrade and Helen Andrade, Mr. Andrade is Chairman
of John Andrade Insurance Agency, Inc. and a former President of Bristol Rotary.
5. The Bristol Town Council was the first community organization to donate funds
($1,000) to help establish the Support Center.
6. There will be a fundraiser for the Support Center on September 19 at the Frerichs
Farm in Warren. It will be called “The Good Old Days” and will be an old time
fair with fun for the whole family. All proceeds will go to The Autism Project -
East Bay Support Center.
7. On October 24, there will be another fundraiser to be held at the Anthony Quinn
Estate which will be by invitation only.
8. Donations for The Autism Project—East Bay Support Center can be mailed to the Bristol Rotary Charities Foundation, P.O. Box 469 Bristol, RI 02809. The foundation is a 501(c)(3) Public Charity and all donations are tax deductible. Donations can also be sent to The Autism Project, 1516 Atwood Ave. Johnston, RI 02919, which is also a 501c3.
About Bristol Rotary Charities Foundation Bristol Rotary Charities Foundation is a 501c3 public charity and along with the Bristol Rotary Club serves the community of Bristol and surrounding areas through donations to support local charities and causes. It is a member of Rotary International which is a worldwide organization with local chapters that support causes targeted to maximize community and global impact. The organization is dedicated to service to others. Its motto is “Service Above Self”