Suburban Family Magazine Article

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Autism New Jersey Conference 2013

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On Thursday and Friday I had the opportunity to attend the Autism New Jersey Conference in Atlantic City, NJ. At the conference I was able to explore a wide variety of autism resources, and network with different social program organizations. I am proud to announce that I also had the opportunity to briefly meet the New Jersey Assemblyman, Louis Greenwald, as well! It was a great experience and I really appreciate his support in my Fantastic Friends and NJFRIEND efforts. I also got to meet Kerry Magro, who is an author of his own book, Defining Autism From The Heart. It was a pleasure meeting Kerry as well because I read his book over the summer and he showed in his book that he is an inspiration to the special needs community! Attending this conference was amazing because everyone had a unique connection to autism, and I am so honored to have met some really amazing organizations and to have learned more about the autism community. Below are links to the Autism New Jersey Website and to Kerry Magro’s Website! Please check them out. I love New Jersey!

http://www.autismnj.org/

http://kerrymagro.com/

Autism Radio

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Today I had the most amazing opportunity to appear as a second time guest on Autism Radio and Hope Saves The Day. My friend, Paul Cimins, is the founder of this wonderful Non-Profit Organization that broadcasts to millions of bilingual subs…cribers worldwide.

Autism Radio™ is a Non-Profit Organization that is committed to making a difference in the Autism Community. Their mission is to improve the lives of the individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorders and their friends and families, who struggle to understand, treat, care for, and help find a cure for their loved one.

Autism Radio™ is dedicated to raising public awareness about Autism, and helping individuals, families, and society cope with struggles of this disorder. Their mission is to raise funds and distribute them to families in need who are dealing with the Autism Spectrum Disorder. Autism Radio is committed to raising the funds necessary to support these goals.

Hope Saves The Day™ is a multimedia interactive open forum dealing with Autism broadcasted internationally. Hope Saves The Day intends to provide information to the public about autism and related topics and provide an interactive network for the community. They are an unbiased weekly broadcast that is published on the internet, that obtains an active 14 million listeners.

NJFRIEND and Fantastic Friends are strong supporters of Autism Radio and Hope Saves the Day. We all believe in giving back to the special needs community while working together. To become a supporter of Paul and everyone on behalf of Autism Radio and Hope Saves The Day, please visit their website posted below.

Please save the date for October 26th for a very special fundraiser! Autism Radio will be hosting their annual Rocktober Music Festival at Eisenhower Middle School in Succasunna, NJ! Doors will be opening at 4pm. The flyer is posted below. Please come out for a great show, featuring some pretty amazing bands- and a guest performance by Run D.M.C., along with the appearance of the lovely miss New Jersey. I will also be there! Please come out to support and share this flyer with everyone you know!

Please contact Paul at paul@autismradio.org.

Buy tickets here: http://www.eventbrite.com/event/2590568460?ref=ebtnebtckt

Autism Radio Website: http://www.autismradio.org/

Autism Radio Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AutismRadio

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Labrador Hill Farm

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I visited Labrador Hill Farm in Waterford, NJ today to volunteer in an equine therapy program. I met Sarah, the owner of the farm, who explained to me the details of the program along with the goals. I was going to assist with a young girl whose name was Sarah and Mark, a mature young man. They each had their own challenges but seemed to really light up around the horses.

Sarah and Mark both were repeat visitors and knew the owner and her horses well. Sarah and I took the horses out to pasture to feed and then Sarah rode April, her horse. They had a relationship built on mutual respect. A respect she didn’t seem to receive from her peers and she was “in her zone.” Mark took his horse, Quincy, out to pasture and really seemed to enjoy the connection he had with the horse.

I could see that Sarah and Mark were developing a confidence and love so strong for the horses. There is a sense of feeling so natural and tranquil being around farm animals. This is a great place to take individual or group classes, and I would highly recommend trying it out! It is especially good for social interaction between people and lovely animals! The most important lesson I learned today was that animals have the ability to bring out a gentle, caring side in both kids and adults, and it allows your child to learn responsibility and independence. I am so thankful for this program and having met two new friends! Please check out the link below for more information!

https://m.facebook.com/LabradorHill?__user=100000200809416

Career and Community Studies at The College of New Jersey

Yesterday I had the privilege to visit the Career and Community Studies program at The College of New Jersey. The CCS program at TCNJ is a 4 year and mentor based college program that provides people with intellectual and developmental disabilities the opportunity to learn and develop career skills, job skills, living skills, and social skills. After the 4 year program, students are prepared to live independently and enter the working world. It was amazing to see that the CCS program provides an inclusive environment with neuro-typical college students in classroom activities and campus social activities. The Career and Community Studies program at TCNJ is a great program, and I am happy to have made some friends along the way :)! The link is below for more information.

http://ccs.pages.tcnj.edu/mentors/