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Autism Charlotte



Our Mission 

Autism Charlotte is a local non-profit foundation dedicated to addressing the needs of families in our community dealing with autism through inclusion-based programs.

Are you interested in volunteering or interning with us? 

Since 2006, Autism Charlotte has been very successful in building, growing, and maintaining sustainable funding for our programs, which have proven to be impactful and have made a significant difference in the lives of those served. Autism Charlotte is currently the only organization in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Community serving children and families living with autism with an inclusion-focused strategy. All of our programs are unique in our community and fill a significant gap in services for children with autism. Our current program continuum includes:   
Extended Learning & Development: An innovative service delivery model, offered in various Charlotte-Mecklenburg School and YMCA of Greater Charlotte locations, offers children on the autism spectrum a balance of educational and social learning; individualized skill development training; recreational opportunities; and personal support in their natural setting; among typical student peers; during afterschool and summer hours, and with a 1 to 3 staff to affected child ratio. The program creates a safe, nurturing, and enriching environment, aimed at meeting each child’s unique needs by first providing training and education to both staff and student peers within each location where Extended Learning and Development is to be offered. Student peers are engaged in the program by offering opportunities for them to become homework helpers, playmates, and snack buddies for children impacted by autism. High school students, college interns, and community volunteers are also incorporated into the serving network.  

University Autism Outreach Program: An innovative in-home and community-based program that connects children with autism with college students seeking to gain meaningful autism-related experience. Students are strategically matched with families, and under the training, direction, and supervision of credentialed staff, provide care, one on one coaching, skill development, and a wide variety of support to children and families impacted by autism. Current university partners include Davidson College, CPCC, UNCC, JCSU, Queens University, Wingate University, and Winthrop University. Approximately 30 children are served annually (for a 3-semester service period); 98% demonstrate measurable progress towards their individualized goals. Interns are also placed with other autism-serving organizations throughout the local community, serving a combined total of 60 interns annually. 

PATHS Program (Preparing Adolescents to Transition from High School): A new, cutting-edge curriculum specifically targeted towards high school students with Asperger’s and similar disorders; delivered in a college setting (currently Queens University of Charlotte and UNCC), with teaching, skill development, training, simulated and real life experiences, and enrichment activities that are designed to help participants plan and prepare to successfully transition from high school to a higher educational learning environment. Approximately 25 youth and young adults are served annually, with 92% of high school graduates going on to college. In addition, approximately 40 college interns gain invaluable hands-on experience through their involvement in the program.

iCan BikeTM Camp: A community-based program designed to serve children and young adults with a wide range of disabilities, utilizing a nationally recognized model. Participants are taught and supported in learning to ride a conventional bicycle. The primary goal of the program is to increase independence and build self-confidence. The program consistently serves at the maximum program capacity of 40 children per summer, with an 85% success rate, and involving over 75 community volunteers.  

University Program Goal:
To recruit, train, and retain volunteers and interns that represent the Charlotte community, are eager to share their skills and passion for children and youth, and are committed to help us achieve our mission and vision. 

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52 People | 440 Impacts | 1,556 Hours




Hello Michele I hope to hear from you soon. Thank you Tara Chaplin