This is a guest post from Steven Cohen, the founder of JoRide Bicycles, for special needs children and adults. His son Joey has autism.
JoRide Bicycles is happy to announce we will be participating in the Chicago Walk Now for Autism Speaks as a Resource Fair vendor. Participants are using the JoRide bike to assist with OT and PT issues as well as social activities too—and we want to introduce Chicago families to this new product.
I founded JoRide Bicycle after my son Joey who has autism.
Over the past couple of years, I have tried to teach my autistic son Joey how to ride a standard pedal bicycle. After knocking his legs into the pedals time and time again, he, not surprisingly, lost interest. Meanwhile, he still desperately yearned to be able to go riding with his siblings and peers. For years, I have pulled Joey around in a Burley (a pull-behind bicycle trailer for children). That way, he was at least able to come along with the rest of the family, but he didn’t receive any exercise in the process. Now eleven years old and too large to fit in a Burley, I thought his bicycle days were over. That’s when I began tinkering with his bike. The modified version I came up with was the prototype for JoRide. And thanks to his own JoRide, Joey no longer takes a passive backseat in the Burley. He loves to actively ride just like other children, and he is content for HOURS just watching the movement of the wheels that he is accomplishing all by himself.
JoRiding has provided my son Joey with balance skills as well as newfound confidence and independence. It can accomplish the same benefits for any rider.
JoRide has appeared on many news broadcasts both locally and nationally lately as well as newspaper and magazine articles.
All of this coverage can be seen on our website.
We are very thankful for all the attention we are receiving as the bike and offered programs by local schools, community centers and individual riders have expressed huge interest. JoRide is a year round activity and has become very popular promoting fitness activities. In addition, the bike gives the ability to Walk – Ride and rest when needed.
30 other online retailers will be carrying JoRide Bicycles in the coming weeks.
Again, please visit our website to see pictures, videos, links to articles and reports completed and upcoming.
This Valentines’s Day don’t forget that Autism Speaks and Autism Speaks Canadas’ partners Zales, Peoples, and Mappins continue to feature their beautiful and exclusive Shared Heart Collection. Guys, here are 10 great reasons to shop now:
• A piece from the shared collection will last much longer than a weekend getaway.
• If everyone buys a diamond, we’ll stimulate the economy.
• Diamonds don’t wilt like roses.
• Diamonds don’t have calories!
• Because sharing is caring!
• New diamond can double as a glass cutter for when you forget your keys and can’t get into the house.
• You get to tell all your friends you got her a diamond this year.
• Because you know her, and Zales knows diamonds!
• Diamonds don’t melt.
• $5 gets donated to Autism Speaks for every piece sold!
From Friday, January 28 through Monday, February 21, Babies“R”Us and Toys“R”Us stores nationwide are holding the “Great Trade-In” event, urging customers to trade-in any used cribs, car seats, bassinets, strollers, travel systems, play yards, high chairs or toddler beds in exchange for a 25% savings on the purchase of any new baby item, in any of these product categories, from select manufacturers.
The “Great Trade-In” event is a national safety program designed to draw attention to the fact that certain used baby products, like cribs and car seats, can carry potential hazards, but are still in circulation and are not the best candidates to be handed down or resold. Beyond recalls, certain older and used baby items can be potentially unsafe for a variety of reasons, including damage or lack of compliance with recent advances in product safety standards. Since the company introduced the “Great Trade-In” event in September 2009, approximately 300,000 potentially unsafe cribs, car seats and other baby products – most of which were in extremely poor condition – have been turned in at stores across the country.
Customers can visit their local Babies“R”Us or Toys“R”Us store to trade-in used cribs or baby products. Day care centers or other organizations that wish to exchange items in bulk are encouraged to contact their local Babies“R”Us or Toys“R”Us store prior to returning their used items to ensure adequate availability of new merchandise.
For more information on the “Great Trade-In” event, including a list of participating manufacturers, please visit Babiesrus.com/trade-in. For additional information on Toys“R”Us, Inc. safety initiatives, tips to keep kids safe and to sign up to receive e-mail notifications about product recalls visit Toysrus.com/Safety.
White Castle along with NEST Fragrances and Autism Speaks, celebrated the success of the Original Slider®-scented candle with sliders and signature martinis at a press event on December 14 at White Castle’s 8th Avenue, New York City location.
This ‘Little Candle That Could’ has captured the hearts of Cravers, autism supporters, the media and celebrities, including television host, author, and magazine publisher Martha Stewart, and world-renowned fashion designer Vera Wang, both of whom stopped by the event on Tuesday to support the candle’s cause.
The small but impressive Original Slider®-scented candle, simply packaged in a ceramic holder replicating the White Castle hamburger signature cardboard sleeve, has warmed White Castle Cravers’ homes all over the country.
“Our original goal simply was to sell a fun, distinctive candle for our Cravers that could help raise funds for Autism Speaks,” said Jamie Richardson, White Castle Vice President of Corporate Communications. “We never anticipated the amount of good this candle would do. The amount of its sales has raised to support Autism Speaks is just remarkable and surpassed everyone’s expectations.”
The candle first debuted in May to commemorate the 18th annual celebration of National Hamburger Month. White Castle teamed up with Laura Slatkin, Founder and CEO of NEST Fragrances, often called the “Queen of home fragrance,” to introduce a candle with scent of America’s first fast-food hamburger. The idea for the candle was sparked when White Castle executives met Slatkin, who sits on the board of Autism Speaks.
During the event, White Castle presented Autism Speaks with a check for $500,000, representing the net proceeds from the candle’s sales. “White Castle, The Ingrams, and the Slatkins have been such terrific friends to our organization over the years and we can’t thank them enough for their commitment to Autism Speaks. This is a wonderful gift to the autism community, and it’s just in time for the holidays. Thank you for helping us to change the future for all who struggle with autism spectrum disorders” remarked Autism Speaks Co-founder Bob Wright, who, along with his Co-founder Suzanne Wright, were on hand to accept the check.
Richardson said White Castle expects to donate more as the holiday gift season is in full swing and candles are still selling. “I am thrilled the candle has been so well received by White Castle lovers everywhere – it has become one of the hit cause-related gifts this holiday season,” Slatkin said. “NEST and White Castle have a strong relationship and this is just another example of a lot of good happening when two companies join forces.”
The candles are currently available in White Castle restaurants nationwide. The candles are temporarily sold out at White Castle’s online store; the company expects to have them available online soon.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy!!!
1. Holidays are right around the corner. What a great stocking stuffer?!
2. Save on your electric bill AND have your house smell delicious. Hit two birds with one stone!
3. Harold and Kumar are among your favorite movie characters of all time.
4. If you didn’t know, White Castle was the first hamburger chain, buy a candle and be part of history.
5. 4,000 candles have already sold, and there are limited quantities available, shop now!
6. Why pay a fortune to go to a spa, when you can have a White Castle customized aromatherapy treatment?
7. For those of you dieting, you get the burger without the calories!
8. Saturday night is date night with your wife. (And candlelight ups the romance factor.)
9. The smell of BBQ’s will waft through your house. Who wouldn’t want that in November?
10. They are only $13, and a portion of each White Castle candle sold benefits Autism Speaks.
Special thanks to those who made this happen – our corporate partner White Castle, Autism Speaks’ board member, Laura Slatkin, and her company, NEST Fragrances. Laura and her husband, Harry, who founded the New York Center for Autism, have a son with autism. The Slatkins are long-time supporters of Autism Speaks.
On Monday, September 20, 2010- which was arguably one of the best days of weather we have enjoyed this year- Autism Speaks proudly kicked off its Inaugural Autism Speaks Fall Classic. Joining us was our title sponsor, Shop Rite, and together we hosted an exciting day of golf at the illustrious Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, NJ. It was a wonderful day that included an afternoon shotgun start on Baltusrol’s famed Lower Course. The tournament included several course contests and culminated with a Hole in One by Dr. Peter Kapsimalis who will take away a lease provided by Ray Catena Lexus of Freehold. We are thrilled to announce that the Fall Classic raised over $200,000 for Autism Speaks!
Evening cocktails included a silent and a live auction that offered an opportunity to help fund family services initiatives for adults with autism. Honorary Co-Chair and Autism Speaks Co-Founder Bob Wright rolled highlights from the first annual and highly successful “Light It Up Blue” initiative on World Autism Awareness Day, on April 2. Event Co-Chair and President of The Bachman Company, Scott Carpenter hosted the evening program which included a “Thank You” video with a personal message from himself and fellow event Co-Chairs, Anne & Dave St.Clair. The video was a touching piece that provided the Baltusrol audience with an overview of what autism is and why their support is so crucial to our cause.
Our friends at 106.7 Lite fm are hosting a contest, Pay It Forward Artist of the Day, to benefit Autism Speaks. Starting on Monday, September 13, listeners can win not only $500 for themselves, but another $500 for Autism Speaks. Please see below for the regions eligible to win.
106.7 Lite fm isn’t stopping there! For every person that signs up with a unique address, Lite fm will donate $1. All you have to do is give your first and last name, hometown, and e-mail address. It is a simple way to get involved and donate to Autism Speaks.
Here is a list of the station’s total survey area (TSA), as defined by Arbitron Inc. Listeners in any of these areas are eligible to win.
Fairfield (SN Split) CT Bergen NJ
Essex Balance NJ Essex HDBA NJ
Essex HDHA NJ Hudson Balance NJ
Hudson HDBA NJ Hudson HDHA NJ
Middlesex Balance NJ Middlesex HDHA NJ
Monmouth NJ Morris NJ
Passaic Balance NJ Passaic HDHA NJ
Somerset NJ Union Balance NJ
Union HDBA NJ Union HDHA NJ
Bronx Balance NY Bronx HDBA NY
Bronx HDHA NY Kings Balance NY
Kings HDBA NY Kings HDHA NY
Nassau Balance NY Nassau HDBA NY
New York Balance NY New York HDBA NY
New York HDHA NY Putnam NY
Queens Balance NY Queens HDBA NY
Queens HDHA NY Richmond NY
Rockland NY Suffolk Central East NY
Suffolk Central West Balance NY Suffolk Central West HDHA NY
Suffolk East NY Suffolk West Balance NY
Suffolk West HDBA NY Westchester Balance NY
Westchester HDBA NY Westchester HDHA NY
Participating* UNO’s restaurants are donating 20% of all sales to Autism Speaks during the Labor Day Weekend as part of its UNO Dough Rai$ers promotion. Host a lunch, dinner or both at your local participating UNO’s and have a great meal while knowing that part of the proceeds are going towards helping our families struggling with autism everyday. Spread the word to your friends and families! Don’t cook this weekend, go to UNO’s!
*Restaurants in Florida, Massachusetts, New York City area, Chicago, Northern Virginia and Maryland (excluding Deep Creek, Md.)
This post is by Sheila Sullivan. Sheila, a veteran member of the Autism Speaks awareness team, also manages the organization’s branding, merchandising and licensing. She has a tendency to get really excited about things that help people in the autism community directly and even more excited when people and companies step forward to help Autism Speaks fulfill its mission. You will be hearing more from Sheila, no doubt!
Necessity is the mother of invention, as the saying goes. The best ideas are often born from a need that isn’t met – and iPrompts®, from HandHold Adaptive, is one of them. When the inventors of this App for iPhone® and iPod Touch® learned that their son with autism, like many other children who struggle with developmental and language disabilities, greatly benefits from the structure and clarity provided by visual aids, they used picture-based schedules and choice boards to help him transition between activities, communicate his needs, and stay on task. However, they were frustrated by the tools available – printing and laminating pictures, losing plastic symbols magnets, transporting bulky notebooks – finding them unwieldy and not nearly as portable as they would like. They channeled their frustration into designing something better. The result: HandHold Adaptive and its first product, iPrompts®, were born.
iPrompts® is, in essence, PECS for iPhone® and iPod Touch® users – caregivers, parents, teachers – that makes use of technologies available to make this previously bulky, unwieldy process portable and simple. HandHold Adaptive is donating 10% of the sales of the iPrompts® app to Autism Speaks.
One popular dietary treatment for symptoms of autism is the GFCF (gluten-free, casein-free) diet, which involves the removal of gluten (a protein found in barley, rye, and wheat, and in oats through cross contamination) and casein (a protein found in dairy products). Although many parents express an interest in trying the GFCF diet for their child, it is often difficult to find tasty GFCF alternatives that their child will eat.
For that reason, Autism Speaks is proud to be partnering with zpizza, a restaurant chain which not only offers pizza with gluten-free crust, but a full menu of items (including vegan cheese) which make it easier for people with dietary restrictions to enjoy eating out.
One appreciative father, whose daughter has dietary restrictions, shares his story:
“My nine-year-old daughter has celiac disease and, as you can imagine, eating out together as a family is a very difficult task. Since she was diagnosed at two years old, she has grown up eating differently than her family, friends in school and at church. She always feels somewhat embarrassed by the fact that she isn’t like everyone else because she eats differently than them. As a family, we have never been able to go to a pizza restaurant together … that is until now! Thanks to zpizza’s gluten-free pizza we get to eat pizza together without having to bring anything with us, and my daughter gets to enjoy the same meal we are without feeling excluded or different. To many this may not seem like that big of a deal, but it means the world to my wife and me (and my daughter!).”
Starting this past Saturday, 30% of every gluten-free crust sold will benefit Autism Speaks, through June 30 – please check out a zpizza location near you and visit their Facebook page for special and giveaways. Thank you to our friends at zpizza for their support of Autism Speaks and of our families.