Dan's Story

Your gift has an impact for Autism families like Dan’s.

“What do we do now?” That’s the question Alice asked when their three-year-old son Dan was diagnosed with Autism. “He’s this super-loveable kid who makes everyone smile, and he’s always laughing,” says Alice. “But we noticed early he wasn’t hitting some milestones.”

Dan didn’t make eye contact or play with his toys in the same way as others. His language was delayed, and he couldn’t wave. Yet his parents say he has always had this amazing memory and is very musically inclined. “We always tell him he has superpowers,” says Alice.

Alice tried everything before Dan was diagnosed, but they didn’t see much progress. Then they were told to take him to the Geneva Centre for Autism because it was “the best of the best.” Now they say their house is “full of joy.”

“We call it life-changing because now Dan is making eye contact, he loves his toys, and recently spoke to another child for the first time.”

It is Dan’s progress that inspired them to tell others about the Geneva Centre for Autism and the urgent need to support its programming for children. As a non-profit organization, the Geneva Centre for Autism relies on the generosity of others to help bridge the gap between what the government funds and the actual cost of running these specialized programs. 

“We truly wish all families had the means to access the experts at Geneva, especially now that the cost of living continues to rise,” says Alice. “The Geneva Centre for Autism does what it can to manage costs, but would like to do more to help families.” 

Dan’s parents hope families like theirs learn about the Geneva Centre for Autism and have the opportunity to see how special it is. “We know how helpless it feels sometimes being a parent of an Autistic child,” says Alice. “It feels like everything is a meltdown—from putting your child’s jacket on to getting them into a car seat. Before working with his therapy team, we’d always say how every day was a struggle when it shouldn’t be.”

Today, Dan’s family looks forward to a report every day on his progress at Geneva. They are even learning how to respond to certain situations, so the days are easier. “It’s so hard to know what to do at first, and we remember when we hit our breaking point,” says Alice. “We saw Dan in a group setting where kids were playing, and he was isolated, on his own. Moments like that are so scary because you worry so much about their future.”

But with the help of Geneva Centre for Autism, Alice says Dan continues to make progress in his two programs that are specific to his needs. “The Geneva Centre for Autism—with empathy and care, answered that initial question for us, “What do we do now?” And they are with us every step of the way. We are so grateful.” 

Please donate today to help more families like Dan’s benefit from the Geneva Centre for Autism. Thanks to Sonderly, your gift will be doubled* until December 31st. Thank you!

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*Up to $20,000
** Names changed for privacy