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Children with Autism and Special Needs: Growing, Learning & Succeeding

About

Children with special needs deserve a chance to fulfill their potential. Our programs including Heartspring School, Pediatric Services and Autism Services teach kids with special needs life-skills that provide a path to independence.

Web Site www.heartspring.org

Email ccalvert@heartspring.org

Success Story

Home is where children take their first steps in life, where they discover love. It's the magical place where they learn to explore their world feeling safe, secure, and accepted. But five-year-old Maggie's journey started with an alarming realization: she was fifteen months, and still didn't respond to her name, hold eye contact, or play with toys. "As first-time parents, we were very scared," says Hannah, Maggie's mother. “We had a lot of overwhelming ‘What if?’ questions.” For years, Maggie's family searched, anxiously waiting for answers after multiple doctor visits, testing, and therapy sessions. Eventually, a diagnosis hit home: Autism Spectrum Disorder.

This scary journey led Maggie to Heartspring, where her life quickly took a hopeful, positive turn. After two years of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy, Maggie progressed to CARE Clubs. Through our Community of Autism Resources and Education (CARE) Club program, Maggie found a safe and inviting place where, through structured activities and conversations with peers, she learned social and communication skills. And with each smile, new friendship, and interaction, she began to grow in confidence as she learned to enjoy being her authentic self. "CARE Clubs is her place," says Hannah. "It's her place to go. It's become her second home, because she feels so happy and comfortable there." Now Maggie fully expresses who she is: a sweet, loving child with a zeal for life and the exciting adventures that await her. Maggie's journey started with uncertainty and fear, but it led her to find her place in the world where she discovered a home away from home: Heartspring.