HERE and HERE! My best friend from 8th grade's son has Autism Spectrum Disorder. Since moving from Maryland to Tennessee, I've been blessed in that I've been able to see Laura and her family again. The last time I saw Laura was when we moved from Oklahoma to Maryland, and Coen was a newborn baby! We've met up several times and let our kids play together. Coen is very dear to my heart. When Laura had Coen, I did not yet have any kids, and believed that I could not conceive. Thankfully God had other plans, and as you all know I have two boys ages 2 and 4! Coen has really influenced me in a mighty way. Seeing that he and Aaron are only 2 years apart in age and the challenges that Laura faces daily, really struck me to the core. There is no cure for Autism, no known cause. Yet the number of kids being diagnosed with Autism is on the rise! A staggering 1 in 88 kids are now being diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)! That's a 78% increase from 10 years ago!
A little bit about A4cwsn and their mission (information taken from A4cwsn's website):
"a4cwsn is committed to helping the families and carers of children with special needs and the wider community of educators and therapists who support them, by producing videos that demonstrate how products designed to educate children and build their life skills really work from a user perspective. Our aim is that these videos, along with relevant information and advice from an independent source you can trust, provides valuable insight into whether a product is suitable for its intended purpose or not, enabling sensible buying decisions to be made. We hope this site and its content provides a valuable resource to the community that serves our precious children with special needs."
Here are some words 'straight from the horse's mouth' as they say, directly from Gary, detailing his journey with a son who has epilepsy and is also on the spectrum:
"A4cwsn, apps for children with Special Needs began as a hobby back in January 2011. My son Benjamin was diagnosed with Epilepsy and is on the Spectrum, so when the iPad came out we thought, maybe this could help in some way. Well almost immediately we started seeing his attention span increase as he became fascinated by the touch screen and what the apps were about. I then decided to contact some developers and ask if i could get app codes to video and put on a web-site to share with other parents. These would be apps that i thought were useful for other parents of children with Special Needs, it not only showed you what the apps can do but also saved you time and most importantly money. A lot of apps for CWSN can cost upwards of $50 - $300 and that is a lot to ask of a parent if they know nothing about the app. Anyway, so here we are today, over 500 Apps on Video, over 140 people helped to get iPads and by the end of 2012, we hope around 200 ppl will have got iPads through A4. We have been mentioned on ABC, NBC, CBS, WSJ Radio, FOX, USA Today, Huffington Post, Forbes Magazine, NYTimes to name a few. We intend to continue helping as many ppl as possible for as long as possible."
Gary (with the help of the A4cwsn community) has put iPads in the hands of kids who really need them. iPads have become an important tool in the hands of kids with special needs! Applications (APPS) have been created to help all children develop in all areas of their lives. There are APPS for helping with speech, reading, color identification, daily tasks such as waking up, going to the bathroom and brushing your teeth (as shown HERE in Gary's video review of the Abilipad APP)! This APP is simply amazing!! If I had an iPad I would be buying it!! Especially since its now on sale for 50% off! Only $9.99 now through July 13!
This is just one of the amazing resources available at A4cwsn: (taken from A4cwsn's website):
Amazing Parents / Professionals dealing with Amazing Children
This page is all about our Facebook Community and we hope that you will join us. Below you will find a growing list of conditions and disorders that our community deals with every day. As a community we are here for each other and here to listen. We want to hear from you and we want you to listen to us. We all need a shoulder to cry on from time to time. Here is a pretty big one just for you.
If you click on the type of condition or disorder it will take you to a page that will provide more information. To see the complete list of condition/disorder and view the information specific to that condition/disorder, please click HERE!
Not only does A2cwsn help get iPads into the hands of some really special kids, A4cwsn also provides a wealth of information on a wide variety of iPad APPS right at your fingertips!
I know many of you will be heading over to A4cwsn to check out the awesome APPS that are available, special needs or not! These APPS are amazing and can be used by all children to aide in their every day learning!
By the end of 2012 A4Cwsn will be very close to 200 iPads given away through the A4 community and thousands of apps and iTunes cards as well as a cruise to a family of four and far too many other gifts to mention.
We have every intention of continuing to help Children with Special Needs and Parents, teachers and professionals get the tools they need for their Children and clients, students. With your help this will be a reality.
We will be working closely with Developers to have exciting news / announcements in the emails and of course special offers, sales and promo codes.
Now here is the information you have all been waiting for!
How do you enter to win 1 of 40 iPads that Gary (of A4cwsn) is giving away???I'm so glad you asked. Just for clarification, by supporting A4cwsn via an e-mail subscription mentioned above will not increase your chance of winning one of the 40 iPads that will be given away. To be eligible to win one of the 40 iPads given away this time around, you simply need so subscribe to A4cwsn via e-mail. You can do that HERE (left side-bar, half way down under 'subscribe to our mailing list')!
Don't forget to read about our experience with worms, and the current $25 GC giveaway to Heirloom Wooden Toys (open to US residents only) which ends 17 July!
Oh, and the upcoming Flufftastic Summer Celebration (10-24 August)! Where I will be giving away over $120.00 of fluffy prize packs each one valued at at least $30!!
Thanks for being a Life With My Littles reader!!
~Mama of the Littles~