The Answer Inc. is a 501c3 N.F.P. organization that is dedicated to improving and enriching the quality of life of families impacted by Autism and/or other Developmental Disorders by providing support, resources, education, recreation and advocacy. Our goal is to de-stigmatize societies’ opinion of people with Autism and Developmental Disorder and empower families.
WHO WE ARE
WHAT WE DO
HOW YOU CAN HELP
“Open Your Heart to Autism Today” by supporting our current fundraiser or by visiting our how you can help page, where you will find ways to help spread the love and the word about our efforts in the community.
Open Your Heart To Autism - Today
Our "10TH Annual Autism & Special Needs Walk-a-Thon” will take place on Saturday, May 4, 2019, from 12:00pm to 4:00pm at Proviso West High School, 4701 W. Harrison, Hillside, IL
We are requesting your support as a Fundraiser, Sponsor, Vendor, or Donor. All proceeds raised during this event will be used in support of the various programs we provide for our families and community.
For the last decade we've worked diligently to enhance the lives of the families that we serve, and we know all too well that this is not something we can accomplish alone. With government funding being cut regularly, we rely on thoughtful, committed citizens like you to support our efforts to serve those impacted by Autism and Developmental Disorders. In 2019, we are evermore committed to delivering much needed resources, throughout the Chicagoland area - providing:
Monthly support groups that host guest facilitators, Provide information on resources and create dialogue for discussion and support.
Family outings and Peer Dances that provide educational opportunities to teach and practice acceptable public behaviors and socialization skills.
1st Responder Trainings - teaching the signs and symptoms of Autism
Trainings for Staff at the local Park Districts and Businesses.
Bullying Prevention Program “BULLYING is not THE ANSWER”
Music N Me exercise, nutrition, and dance program.
Sponsor children and young adults, to "Special Camps for Special Citizens" a Horseback riding camp in Winfield, IL.
Spectrum University Tutoring Program for Special Needs Young Adults.
As you consider "Opening Your Heart To Autism" please keep in mind that a contribution of ANY kind is greatly appreciated and a portion of all donations is tax deductible.
THANK YOU TO OUR 2019 OPEN YOUR HEART TO AUTISM SPONSORS
browse last Year's Gallery
I pray that you take a second to browse some of "What We Do" and that you will find yourself encouraged to come out and join us on Saturday, May 4, 2019 --- as we continue in our commitment to being The Best Autism Awareness and Support Agency in the Chicagoland Area, delivering on our promise to the families that we serve.
Our Support Services
Our Support Services have always been the heart and soul of The Answer Inc - because we know, first hand, that parenting a child with Autism or any other developmental disorder is very demanding. The Powerful Parents Of Autism - which is our co-ed support group - started with the simple idea of coming together, once-a-month, to make sure that everybody was aware of the latest resources available to them. What we quickly found out however, was that for many of our parents, this is often their only opportunity to share experiences, and talk to someone that understands what they go thru. Once we added professional child care to the mix - that allowed a monthly support group meeting to double as a much needed retreat. Over a decade later, what started with the Powerful Parents Of Autism support group, led to our Just For Men support group, and then, the implementation of our ALWAYS THERE 24/7 phone support line. Most recently, we’ve brought on an IEP Specialist to help our parents develop Individualized Education Plans that ensures their child’s needs are being met.
Our Community Education Initiatives
As an Autism Awareness and Support Agency, the families that we serve are our number one priority. We also consider it our responsibility however, to educate the communities in which the families that we serve... LIVE. Through strategic partnerships with first responders, libraries, schools, churches, and other community stakeholders, we are able to better prepare our community members to interact with children and adults with Autism and Other Developmental Disorders. With the numbers growing at an alarming rate, wether we are conducting seminars for our local first responders, wether we are creating Autism Friendly spaces within our local libraries, wether we are conducting anti-bullying workshops at our local schools, or wether we delivering a message at a local church during World Autism Month. Each and every effort helps us to continue moving in the direction of our goal as an organization. And that is… To De-Stigmatize societies opinion of people with Autism and Other Developmental Disorders. And we know that… educating our community is the best way to make that happen.
Our Recreational Events
Maintaining a consistent and exciting recreational calendar, is definitely a part of what makes us special... as an organization. We know that the families that we serve, look forward to our scheduled events, because most children with Autism and Other Developmental Disorders struggle socially. Our events... give them an opportunity to really work on that. Families look forward to our Pre Valentines Dance in February and our Dance Fever Event in June. They give them a chance to enjoy their child… enjoy some of the other parents… and the children get to enjoy dancing and spending time with their friends, as well.
Later on in September… we have our annual Gala - where everybody looks forwards to getting dressed up and going out on the town. Then, we usually close out the year with our Steppers Delight event, in December... which is for our parents and supporters. The biggest and best event on our calendar however, is our Annual Open Your Heart To Autism Walk-A-Thon, in May. Teams are usually formed around our kids, and family and friends come out, rally around them, and support them while at the same time supporting a good cause. That best part of that event is that it is truly STIGMATISM FREE and it is always such a wonderful example of what the world should and could look look like… if we just keep on doing the work that we do.
Our MUSIC n ME Program
Sedentary lifestyles and unhealthy eating habits can influence behavior, academic performance and social interactions. Our MUSIC n ME Nutrition, Dance and Exercise Class is a program combining fitness, social interaction, expression and the opportunity to explore nutritious foods. Improved mobility and making better food choices are important and beneficial for long term health and well-being. The group experience teaches patience, listening to instruction and the valuable skill of working your way around a kitchen.
Our Spectrum University Program
Our Spectrum University program is one of the most important services that The Answer Inc Offers. Statistically speaking... more than a third of young adults on the autism spectrum are neither working nor in college. So, for the last decade, we’ve been offering Spectrum University - which is a tutoring program for special needs young adults between the ages of 18 and 40. Spectrum University classes are held every Saturday from 1-3:30… and even though it’s only once a week, the kids really look forward to it - which as an organization, gives us great joy. For the first 15 minutes of every class we focus on celebrating each other… Acknowledging birthdays, recent achievements, and making sure our students feel connected and a sense of community. Then We help them develop their Math. Reading, and Writing skills. And most recently, we added Arts and Crafts to the line up.
Our Latest News & Announcements
If you are simply looking for some "good works" to support in your community, you have come to the right place. We invite you to "Be a part of the Answer" today - because it is contributions from thoughtful committed citizens like yourself, that allow us to fund our programming efforts and continue to provide much needed resources, activities, and outlets for Children and Parents of Children with Autism and other Developmental Disorders.
Click the "Open Your Heart to Autism" button below and we will be sure to send you a special thank you gift as a small gesture of how much your donation means to The Answer Inc and each and every mother and child that make up the community that we serve.
Debra Vines, Founder/Executive Director