Autism Speaks Is Searching To End Autism
Autism Speaks has the ultimate goal of ending autism, by any means necessary.
The majority of their funding goes towards autism research.
Not research for improving therapies and equipment that helps individuals with autism, but research for a cure for autism.
They are also trying to find a prenatal test for autism, similar to the one that they have for Down Syndrome so that mothers will no longer have autistic babies.
As a mother of a child with autism, I wouldnt change a hair on his head. His autism does not define him, but it definitely plays a role in who he is. I would never take that away, and I would never, ever, wish that he hadnt been born because of his autism.
And frankly, as an autistic person, I cant believe an organization that claims to represent me honestly wishes I were never born.
Organization For Autism Research
What They Do: The Organization for Autism Research is a national organization that strive to use science to address the social, educational, and treatment concerns of self-advocates, parents, autism professionals, and caregivers. The organization supports applied research that examines issues and challenges that children and adults with autism and their families face every day. It places a special focus on adults with autism.
How Donations Help: OAR is ranked by Charity Navigator as the #1 autism-related charity. Donations help support a number of OARs programs including scholarships, the Hire Autism portal for encouraging employers to hire adults with autism, and various programs and resources for autistic self-advocates.
What They Do: Based in Arizona, the Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center seeks to advance research and provide support to those with Autism Spectrum Disorder and their families. It offers a variety of programs, including:
- early intervention for the newly diagnosed
- vocational experiences for teens ages 13-18
- employment services for adults on the spectrum.
How Donations Help: The Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center is one of the few programs that offers a lifetimes worth of support to individuals on the Autism Spectrum and their families. Donations help to fund their various programs for children, teens, and adults. SARRC has a four-star rating from Charity Navigator.
Us Autism And Asperger Association
It is a non-profit organization for education, support, and resources for individuals with autism spectrum disorder since 1995. Their main goal is to improve the life quality of those individuals and their families. They provide all the opportunities they can for everyone on the spectrum in order to help them to reach their potential. They believe that it can happen through education, training, information, reliable resources, and partnerships. They think that it is important to work with local society and people all around the world as well. This organization is funded by donations.
Mind Institute At Uc Davis
The UC Davis MIND Institute was founded by parents and is focused on research. The Institute conducts a wide range of research studies while also providing diagnostic and therapeutic services, education, and other programs.
According to its website, the founders “envisioned experts from every discipline related to early brain development working together toward one goal: finding and developing treatments for individuals with neurodevelopmental disabilities.”
Over the years, it has consistently conducted high-level, peer-reviewed studies with impressive results. Because of its funding, expertise, and status, the MIND Institute has also been able to conduct very large autism studiessomething that many smaller groups do not have the resources for.
In addition to autism, the MIND Institute focuses on understanding Fragile X syndrome, Down syndrome, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder , 22q11.2 deletion syndrome, and other neurodevelopmental disorders.
National African American Autism Community Network
It is a non-profit organization founded for African-American families who have someone with autism in their lives. They try to be their voices and biggest support. They are committed to increasing autism awareness, diagnosis, and treatment in underserved societies and environments. They are working collaboratively with other non-profit autism organizations.
How To Choose An Autism Charity
editorial processAshley Halleditorial process
If you have a child, family member, or friend with autism spectrum disorder , you may want to donate to a charity that supports autism research or people living with autism. There are many to choose from, so start by considering details such as how you want your donation spent and then learning as much as you can about the organizations you’re most interested in.
Autistic Self Advocacy Network
It is a non-profit organization run by individuals with autism. It is established in order to raise awareness in the community and to make understand that individuals with autism have a right, they have a voice and they are with us. Members are mostly individuals with autism, both adults and youth. Nevertheless, anyone related to or without can participate in the organization to be part of an autism community. They provide information about what autism is, what right they have, and systems they can benefit from.
The Autism Community In Action
What They Do: Formerly known as Talk About Curing Autism, The Autism Community in Action is a non-profit organization. It provides education and support to individuals and families living with autism. According to its website, the organizations vision is for every individual diagnosed with autism to lead an independent life.
How Donations Help: The Autism Community in Action currently has a three-star rating by Charity Navigator. Donations to the organization help fund the various programs offered at no-cost to families and individuals. These programs include:
Autism Speaks Doesnt Help Autistic People
Only 4% of their huge budget goes towards actually helping individuals with autism and their families with their family grants.
Autism Speaks is arguably the largest autism organization in the country, and yet they really arent focusing at all on helping families who actually experience autism.
For a comparison, 22% of their budget is spent on fundraising efforts.
I simply cant support an organization that pays their CEO such an obnoxious amount while they ignore the real needs of the families the organization claims to support.
Doug Flutie Jr Foundation For Autism
What They Do: Founded by former football star Doug Flutie, the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism aims to help people and families affected by autism live life to the fullest. To achieve this mission, the Foundation sponsors a variety of programs and activities to improve the quality of everyday life for individuals on the autism spectrum.
How Donations Help: Money donated to the Doug Flutie Jr. Foundation for Autism goes towards:
- funding the above programs and activities
- financially supporting families affected by autism
- general advocacy.
What They Do: Have Dreams is a Chicago-based nonprofit. It offers a number of support programs to children, teenagers, and adults on the Autism Spectrum. Examples of provided support include :
- an after-school program
- adult day programs
- general support services for individuals and families.
How Donations Help: All donations made to Have Dreams go towards supporting the organizations many programs and services for children, teens, and adults with autism.
Autism Charities Worthy Of Your Donations 2020
Considering Autism Spectrum Disorder now affects 1 in every 59 children, chances are you know or are related to someone with autism. This may mean you have the desire to support the autism community by donating to an autism-related charity. But simply donating to a charity with the word autism in its title isnt the best way to go about this. For example, would you rather donate to a group with the mission of curing autism, or one which aims to support those with autism and their families? Does it matter to you that an organization only works with those in a particular state or region of the country? How about if only pennies from every dollar go towards an organizations stated mission?
In order to help you research organizations and choose the right one for your money, weve written 20 Autism Charities Worthy of Your Donations. To come up with our list, we read mission statements, talked with those active in the autism community, and consulted watchdog websites such as CharityWatch and Charity Navigator. Keep scrolling for 20 organizations we believe are worthy of your hard-earned money.
The Autism National Committee
What They Do: According to its website, The Autism National Committee is the only autism advocacy organization dedicated to Social Justice for All Citizens with Autism. It was founded in 1990. The Committee aims to protect and advance the human and civil rights of all persons with Autism Spectrum Disorder and related challenges.
How Donations Help: The Autism National Committee is entirely run by volunteers. Every penny that is donated by the public goes towards providing outreach through:
International Society For Autism Research
It is a non-profit organization that was founded in order to improve the life quality of individuals on the autism spectrum. Their must-have aim is helping those individuals with the help of scientific and up-to-date researches. They provide scientific collaboration, training, monitoring, and education.
Get Involved And Make A Difference In The Lives Of Those On The Autism Spectrum
Theres no shortage of ways to help create the best opportunities for people on the autism spectrum. If youd like to support Aspect, the work we do and people on the autism spectrum, choose how youd like to get involved and reach out to us to get started.
Browse our shop to find important resources, guides and supporters products.
Things You Need To Consider Before Donating
People are always concerned about the money they are going to donate. And, at some point they are right. They want to how they use that money. Is it going to spend on rent? Is it going to spend on bills? Thats why donations for a local organization would be a better option.
Every city, bigger or smaller, has non-profit autism-related organizations, agencies, or groups. All of them need your support. You can choose one of them. You need to choose a group that you are sure about the only thing they care about is individuals on the spectrum. If you are living in a big city, your options would be more. You can be even more specific about the organization you are going to donate.
You need to be sure that the group, agency, or organization exactly do what they claim. For example, if they say we are doing researches, they should do really researches. They really should spend money on researches and they need to prove that to you. Do not hesitate to ask for detailed information.
Bedford Playhouse: Autism & Adulthood Panel
Join Bedford Playhouse for Autism Awareness Week as they discuss Autism & Adulthood with a panel on Saturday, April 17th at 3 pm EDT, featuring NEXT for AUTISMs very own SVP of Strategic Initiatives, Patricia Wright, PhD, MPH. Listen to the discussion where they look at the many ways organizations are helping to provide the skills and resources necessary for these young adults to succeed.
Association Of University Centers On Disabilities
It is a non-profit membership organization. They promote university-based programs. The programs they offer are kind of a bridge between the university and community, which means they serve knowledge to the community. They provide knowledge to society. With the help and practices they provide, they want to improve the general health and life of people with disabilities, families, and the environment they live in.
Uc Davis Mind Institute
What They Do: UC Davis enjoys a wide reputation as a leading force in all things medical. Indeed, the UC Davis Medical Center includes the MIND Institute, an organization focused on research related to the diagnosis, therapy, and education of autism. Its mission is to bring together experts from every discipline related to early brain development working together toward one goal: finding and developing treatments for individuals with neurodevelopmental disabilities. The Institute routinely conducts high-level, peer-reviewed studies with larger groups than many other organizations are capable of.
How Donations Help: Donations to the MIND Institute at UC Davis go towards funding the many high-level and peer-reviewed studies the Institute conducts each year.
Please Stop Accidentally Fundraising For Torture
Last week, Mark Rober posted a video on YouTube. Rober, who has just over 18 million subscribers and is best known for his videos where he glitter bombed people who stole packages off porches, posted a 10-minute video, titled The Truth About My Son, about his autistic son.
The primary point of the video comes with the announcement he makes within it; a collaboration with a large number of other YouTubers and famous faces for a fundraiser for a charity called NEXT For Autism. The fundraiser, which is already over 80% of the way to its 1 million dollar goal, is set to culminate in a livestream on April 30 with people like John Oliver, Paul Rudd and MrBeast in attendance.
On the surface, this is a good thing. Charity fundraisers are great and its always nice to see YouTubers and other influencers put time and money into supporting something thats important to them. On the other hand, this is once again a neurotypical person choosing a charity to fundraise for based on their own child which means I was in no way surprised when the news broke very, very quickly that NEXT is shockingly not a great organization.
This really isnt a surprise for any autistic person; a concerningly overwhelming quantity of autism organizations either actively seek to harm us through loudly supporting ABA or other abuse therapies or seek to do so more quietly through impossible efforts to cure autism, something which many if not the majority of autistic adults do not want.
Best Autism Charities In The Us
Autism Spectrum Disorder rates in the United States continue to climb. ASD is a developmental disorder that impairs an individuals ability to communicate and engage socially with others.
Those diagnosed with ASD may also have difficulty learning and experience heightened sensitivity to sensations. Luckily, early diagnosis and intervention can help those on the autism spectrum improve their social, communication, and learning skills.
Thankfully, there are many charities that are designed to help those struggling with Autism.
Below, we have listed 25 of the best autism charities in the US.
The Autism Society Of America
The Autism Society of Americalocated in Rockville, MD, is a grass-roots organization that offers person-to-person community-based support through chapters located throughout the US. The Autism Society of America was founded in 1965 and spends almost 80% of its financial resources on programs designed to support those struggling with ASD.
This charity provides educational information for those interested in obtaining a better understanding of Aspergers and Autism. Individuals will find information on interventions and therapeutic options, autism through the lifespan, and how to navigate services as well as information on legal resources, employment, and legislation.
Volunteer To Support Aspect
Volunteering your time is an impactful way of helping autistic people by creating the best possible opportunities for them to thrive.
Some of our volunteering opportunities include;
- An Aspect Working Bee
- An Aspect combined school sport carnival
- Various major sports events like the City2Surf or a golf day
Autism Society Of America
What They Do: Autism Society of America has chapters throughout the United States, though it is ultimately a grassroots organization. It offers offers personalized support, insight, and advocacy. Autism Society of America also runs an online database of local information and recommendations for families and professionals.
How Donations Help: Autism Society of America is a not-for-profit 501 organization, and donations are tax deductible. Donations help support:
- autism education
There Is Not One Member Of Their Board With Autism
Autism Speaks is one of few disability charities that refuses to include individuals with disabilities on their board or in leadership positions.
They are trying to make decisions regarding the future of autism without consulting any individuals with autism.
In fact, after being criticized so heavily for this, Autism Speaks added John Elder Robinson, an author and autism advocate who has autism, to the board.
He later resigned because the organization had no respect for individuals with autism and he could no longer align himself with their beliefs. You can read more about that here.
For those who say that its simply that there arent autistic people interested and qualified, the Autistic Self Advocacy Networks board includes several autistic self-advocates.
*Update: Autism Speaks has responded to this criticism and has added autistic members to their board. While its a teeny, tiny, baby step in the right direction, it doesnt rectify the damage this organization is done.
Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative
It is a non-profit organization that was founded in 2006. Their aim is to raise autism awareness in the society, improving the understanding, and developing diagnosis and treatment processes. Their biggest goal is being on the top with their best researchers in the field and provide the best information to the autism community. There are different funding opportunities in the organization if you want to help them to improve their services and researches.
Man In Heavy Bear Suit Walks 500 Miles To Raise Money For Autism Foundation
From time to time, youll see videos of people in silly costumes running a marathon, whether its someone dressed as a massive turkey during a Thanksgiving race or donning an elaborate Halloween costume for a harvest run. One man who ran two full marathons dressed as a bear has now taken that costume on the road for a good cause.
Jessy Larios, 33, created his Bearsun character after being inspired by certain Japanese and American cartoons growing up. One of them, the show Hey Arnold!, featured a main character with a football-shaped head. Larios always wanted to create a character with a similarly silly head, which ultimately led to Bearsun. His friends helped him create the costume, which he wore during the 2019 and 2020 Los Angeles Marathons. Then he decided to use Bearsun for something even better: charity walks.
His GoFundMe his latest effort, saying, For this next journey Ive selected to help raise funds towards the National Foundation of Autism Research. They are a nonprofit organization dedicated to the development of innovative treatment programs and services that improve the quality of life for children with autism and Autism Spectrum Disorders . So join me on this next journey! Any donation will help make an impact.
Gonzalez says, We wanted her to see that somebody is doing something for autistic awareness.
Autism Speaks Uses Disgusting Marketing Techniques
Autism Speaks says that they are all for spreading awareness of autism, but in reality, they are spreading only fear.
Over the years they have produced some really terrible videos to market their organization that portray children with autism as something to fear.
One of their videos is a commercial called I Am Autism which you can find on youtube here.
It shows like a horror movie including lines like I know where you live and If youre happily married, I will make sure that your marriage fails and You are scared, and you should be.
They also made a movie called Autism Every Day where mothers talk about how difficult their lives are because of their children with autism with their children in the room.
Including a mother who says that she contemplated driving off a bridge with her child with autism, but only didnt because she also had a neurotypical child.
Seriously. She says it. You can watch here.
Overall, I just cannot in good conscience support autism speaks as the mother of an autistic child or as an autistic person myself.
I know that these arent common knowledge facts, but as you know more, you can do more.
Please do not support this organization. If you are looking for autism organizations to support, please check out the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network.
And if youd REALLY like to support more acceptance and understanding of autistic people, grab this free Autism Signs Cheat Sheet to share with others!
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Data Sources: Irs Forms 990
The Form 990 is a document that nonprofit organizations file with the IRS annually. We leverage finance and accountability data from it to form Encompass ratings. .
Impact & Results
This score estimates the actual impact a nonprofit has on the lives of those it serves, and determines whether it is making good use of donor resources to achieve that impact.
Impact & Results Score
The Autistic Self Advocacy Network
What They Do: The Autistic Self Advocacy Network is a nonprofit organization run by and for individuals with autism. According to its mission statement, the Networks goal is to empower autistic people across the world to take control of our own lives and the future of our common community, and seek to organize the autistic community to ensure our voices are heard in the national conversation about us.
How Donations Help: The Autistic Self Advocacy Network spearheads a number of initiatives each year. All are largely supported by donations. These initiatives include:
- public policy advocacy
Things When You Buy They Donate To Organizations For You
Hidden Hollow Beads Autism Awareness Bracelet
If you want to show your support, it is a good and beautiful way to show it. This bracelet has vibrant colors and it is very comfortable to wear in daily life. When you purchase this bracelet, a certain amount of your purchase is going to be donated.
Alex and Ani You Complete Me Bangle
It has a puzzle piece charm which is the symbol of autism. It is a very beautiful way to show your support and raise awareness. When you purchase this bracelet, 20% of your purchase is going to be donated to the National Autism Association.
Inkstone Autism Awareness Bracelets, 6-Pack Silicone Wristbands
In order to raise awareness about autism and help non-profit organizations, it is a cute way. They are proper for everyday wear. They are very soft and the colors are very vibrant. When you purchase this bracelet, a certain amount of your purchase is going to be donated.
Fundraising For A Cause | Small Silver Autism Jigsaw Puzzle Piece Pins Sterling Silver Lapel Pins for Autism/ Aspergers Awareness & Fundraising Events
It is the most well-known symbol of autism. It is a great way to raise awareness and start a conversation about autism. It is a wonderful fundraising item. When you purchase this bracelet, a certain amount of your purchase is going to be donated to organizations, such as Autism Speaks, The Color of Autism, and the National Autistic Society.
Inkstone Autism Awareness Bracelets
The Autism Science Foundation
What They Do: A top-rated non-profit, The Autism Science Foundation is an important part of the world of autism research. According to the Foundations website, The Autism Science Foundation provides funding directly to scientists conducting cutting-edge autism research to discover the causes of autism and develop better treatments. ASF also provides information about autism to the general public and supports the needs of individuals with autism and their families.
How Donations Help: A What We Fund section on its website outlines exactly what The Autism Science Foundation does with money donated. In short, money goes directly to researchers and organizations conducting cutting-edge research.
Center For Autism And Related Disorders
It is a non-profit organization that is the largest treatment provider for individuals on the autism spectrum all around the world. They provide a tailored program for each individual with autism. These programs help them in their daily lives, especially in order to communicate, make friends, and live independently. They provide assistance and support. They are developed by psychologists, psychiatrists, speech and language pathologists, social workers, and many other professionals related to the area. They put all their efforts to help those individuals and their families.
Other Ways To Give Back
If you you have limited money to donate or would rather get involved in a more hands-on fashion, here are some of the things you can do:
- Join a fundraising march or similar event. These events are a great way to get to know other people who share your interest in autism and are willing to get involved.
- Take part in a clinical study. If you live in or near a research center , you may be eligible to help with autism-related research. Studies usually involve kids or adults on the spectrum, but may also include siblings and/or parents.
- Volunteer as a mentor or buddy or help to run a program, team, or event that specifically includes people on the autism spectrum.
- Become an autism advocate in an organization such as the YMCA or Boy Scouts. These groups are more than willing to include kids on the spectrum but don’t always know how to do so successfully.