This year has been quite a year to say the least. When the world began to shut down in March, we found ourselves like many of you...confused, frustrated, sad, and suddenly very isolated. Throughout the pandemic, we have tried to keep a positive, open mind, knowing we were not alone, and found (and continue to find) creative ways to spend our days with our residential clients (fun runs, exercise programs, art, music, game days, cooking, local Urban Hikes with Mike).
We also connected to our larger community, reaching participants from as far away as Florida, England, and Poland, through the virtual meet ups we created at the start of the Shelter In Place Order in March. Our work was even recognized by Governor J.B. Pritzker, during one of his daily press conferences, as an organization that was at the forefront of adjusting to new our new reality. This fall, we continue our work at our UAS West Side Transition Academy. Here, our more than 70 West Side Chicago Public High School students connect with us to receive exceptional programming from Speech and Language Pathologists, Social Workers, Occupational Therapists, and other staff who assist in social and emotional learning and other activities. Today, we start a month-long #GivingTuesday campaign. During the next four weeks we will share national statistics with you about autism and provide you with information as to how we are addressing these deficiencies. Should you find yourself in a position to be able to donate to Urban Autism Solutions, now is a great time to do so. The Coleman Foundation is supporting Urban Autism Solutions by matching all donations received in the amount of $150, November 1 - December 1. While it is not over yet, we continue to find strength in each other, and from all of you. Thank you for reaching out to check on us, provide us with encouragement, meals, friendship, and support so that we can continue to do what we do best - help our young adults with autism. Warm wishes, Heather M. Tarczan Executive Director