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What We Accomplished in April

What We Accomplished in April

Earlier this year, OAR laid out a set of ambitious goals to continue engaging community members in celebration of April’s Autism Acceptance Month. OAR staff worked with teachers, parents, clinicians, autistic individuals, employers, and researchers to support their local initiatives and increase autism acceptance. This recap describes what was accomplished in partnership with community supporters like you.

Goal 1: Support the autism community with information resources for autistic individuals, families, educators, and professionals.

OAR’s informational resources include guidebooks, manuals, and lessons on how to help autistic individuals thrive as active members of their communities. These resources are provided at little to no cost to autistic individuals, families, schools, nonprofit organizations, and police and fire stations. OAR’s goal was to distribute 40,000 informational resources to autism community members by the end of April.

Results: Between January and April, OAR distributed over 83,000 resources, more than double the original goal.

Goal 2: Teach students in general education about autism using the Kit for Kids program.

Since 2012, more than 194,000 students have learned about autism through the Kit for Kids program. OAR’s goal was to expand that number to an additional 15,000 students, using the Kit for Kids and Autism Tuned In peer education programs to teach them how to understand autism and learn to be good friends with their autistic classmates.

Results: Between January and April, OAR surpassed its goal by reaching 23,474 students, bringing the total number of students impacted by Kit for Kids to over 217,000.

Goal 3: Support autistic young adults through OAR’s Hire Autism initiative.

Since 2017, Hire Autism has directly supported over 1,000 job seekers, welcomed over 360 employer partners, and trained over 140 volunteers. In support of our mission this year, Hire Autism aims to provide job search mentorship to 220 job seekers to help them find employment and recruit 90 national employer partners of varying scopes and sizes.

Results: From January to May of 2024, Hire Autism supported 112 job seekers through the Navigator Program, welcomed 33 new employer partners, and trained 16 new volunteers to help carry out this mission.

Goal 4: Raise money for OAR’s programs, resources, and new research.

OAR’s signature fundraising program, RUN FOR AUTISM, raises funds to support applied autism research that aims to help autistic individuals and their families improve their quality of life. During the month of April, the RUN FOR AUTISM program set a goal to raise $80,000 and engage up to 500 runners dedicating their 2024 miles to autism research.

Results: RUN FOR AUTISM surpassed its goal by raising $108,000 and engaging a total of 866 athletes during the month of April. The funds raised will go towards OAR’s mission to apply research to the challenges of autism.

Goal 5: Fundraise for OAR’s mission with a new and exciting initiative: Stream for Autism.

Stream for Autism gives gamers, streamers, and content creators an opportunity to support the autism community by raising awareness and funds for OAR. In April, our goals were to raise $50,000 to support the distribution of informational resources, educational programs, and OAR’s mission to apply research to the challenges of autism through the Stream for Autism program. We also aimed to sign up 100 new content creators and streamers to fundraise for OAR and spread autism awareness in April.

Results: Despite not reaching our initial fundraising goals, Stream for Autism made a significant educational impact during Autism Acceptance Month. With 15 new streamers raising over $1,000, the initiative showcased the power of community and dedication within the gaming and streaming spheres. Each dollar raised and each new supporter recruited contributed to raising awareness and supporting OAR’s mission.

Looking Ahead

The successes OAR experienced through the Autism Acceptance Month Campaign reveal the strength of the autism community and the dedication of OAR’s supporters. OAR once again thanks our fantastic community for all the work you do to increase autism acceptance year-round!

If you are looking to stay involved in any of the above initiatives, contact info@researchautism.org. If you like what OAR does, share your feedback on the GreatNonprofits website.

The post What We Accomplished in April first appeared on Organization for Autism Research.

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