It’s that time again: Global Giving is matching ALL donations we receive today, Wednesday, June 13, at 50 percent. This is a really important opportunity for Take 2. If you are able, please help us raise the funds we need for this camp season, which begins June 25th. You can click here to donate: http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/teaching-children-with-autism/. You can also learn more there about Take 2.
We did this match campaign once before, in October of last year, and it was enormously beneficial. Our costs are low – other than staff salaries we have very few expenses – but we rely on this help from generous friends because camp tuition doesn’t cover our necessarily low staff to child ratio, and in addition we are committed to providing financial aid to any family that needs it. This year, 60 percent of our campers are receiving scholarships.
We’re grateful for your support every day, but on this one day your generosity will be amplified, so please donate if you can. Last year Global Giving matched our fundraising at 30 percent, but this year, because we are one of their organization “Superstars,” they will match for us at 50 percent. Please give early in the day, before the matching funds run out.
Global Giving continues to be a fantastic resource for Take 2. In April we visited their offices and met with staff to learn more about how we can get even more out of this relationship. They give us the benefits of an infrastructure we couldn’t possibly afford, and that allows us to devote more of our time and funds to running a terrific program. As I write this, Monica is actually in Puerto Rico working with a group that is using the Take 2 curriculum to start its own program for children with autism this summer. We are delighted to support that effort.
Thank you so very much for any help you can give us. And, by the way, if you know how to do this sort of thing, please post to your Facebook, Tweet to your followers, or do any of that tech-savvy stuff that we are still too old-fashioned to take advantage of! Or just call or email friends and relatives and let them know about this opportunity to do good.
Lisa, Monica and Lynn
Since Take 2 began in 2004, clinician-researchers at the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders at Children’s National Medical Center have been integrally involved in developing the program’s curriculum. Several years ago, the CASD doctors, together with Take 2 staff and teachers and administrators at the Ivymount School, developed and began piloting a novel approach to teaching children with autism spectrum disorders the important skills of flexibility, goal-setting and planning. Difficulty with these and other “executive functions” are common in children with high functioning ASDs. The collaboration has so far proved extremely fruitful: based on early successes, the National Institute of Mental Health awarded the group a grant to take the next step in testing the intervention: the curriculum, called Unstuck & On Target, is now being tested in mainstream schools. In addition, the curriculum has been published and is available to parents and educators who would like to give its methods a try. The approaches described in the book are designed to be enjoyable and accessible and to integrate well into children’s real lives. You can see the cover of the book at the top of this Project Update and you can read more about it on the publisher’s website and on Amazon, which you’ll find links for below. The forward to the book is by New York Times best-selling author John Elder Robison. A training program for parents is part of the Unstuck curriculum and there are plans to publish soon the manual that accompanies this training.
We are very proud that Take 2 played a key role in launching this much needed and so far extremely promising new intervention.
As always, we thank you for your support for Take 2. Also, we'd like you to know that in June Take 2 will participate in GlobalGiving’s “bonus day,” when all gifts will be matched. We’ll be in touch with you before that to ask for your help. Please see below for links and for a glowing review of Unstuck & On Target.
Lisa, Lynn & Monica
Here are links where you can learn more about Unstuck & On Target:
And here's a recent review from Amazon:
Dear Take 2 Supporter,
There's no "ask" here, none at all. You're getting this email because you've generously supported Take 2 in the past and we'd like to take a moment, as we prepare for our ninth summer (!) to thank you for your help and tell you a little about what went on at Take 2 this past fall. Here is director Lynn Cannon's wrap-up:
This fall, some of our summer campers were reunited for a weekly social learning group that was designed to reinforce and expand on the skills and concepts they had learned over the summer. The theme of the fall group was “learning to C.H.I.L.L.” This is also known as “hanging out.” What’s involved in that? You know, things like playing video games, enjoying a meal together, exchanging gifts – the goal was to simulate the ways that typical late elementary and early middle school students spend time with their friends.
To C.H.I.L.L you need to:
H- idden rules (follow them!)
I- nitiate conversation
L- augh, when everyone laughs
Campers’ parents were also reunited in the fall program. Once a month, parents came together to discuss the group themes and generalization opportunities and to participate in our guest speaker series. Guest speakers included a speech and language pathologist who shared strategies for improving conversation skills, facilitating play dates and other peer interactions, and expanding social thinking. We were also joined by a local education advocate who provided tips on how to obtain appropriate special education services, and where and when to start the challenging search for the right middle school.
Everyone took away something from our groups this fall. For parents, it was some useful planning tips and a chance to connect with a community of parents. For staff, it was the chance to see a group of boys re-unite and ultimately, and independently, “C.H.I.L.L” over a pizza dinner- laughing and chatting the whole time. Most importantly the campers had an opportunity to spend an hour each week re-connecting and enjoying time with their friends!
Thank you again for your generous support of Take 2. We couldn't do it without you -- we really couldn't!
Lynn, Monica & Lisa
Dear Friends of Take 2,
Please consider a gift to Take 2 on Wednesday, October 19 as early in the day as possible. GlobalGiving, our fundraising and communication partner, will match at 30 percent all gifts made on that day, beginning just after midnight Eastern Daylight Time the night before. If you were thinking of an end-of-year gift, please consider making it a bit early to take advantage of this one-day match. If you’ve never given to Take 2 before, we hope this incentive will appeal to you. Gifts of up to $1,000 will be matched at the 30 percent level until GlobalGiving has exhausted $100,000. We participated in this fundraiser last year and it gave us a very helpful boost. Particularly since Global Giving partners with projects in different time zones around the world, it’s important to make your online gift early on Tuesday the 19th. And if you can go one step further and post this fundraiser to your Facebook or Twitter account, that would be wonderful and very much appreciated.
While GlobalGiving has a big-sounding name and collaborates with large corporations to attract donations from their employees to projects like ours (employers like Gap distribute $10 or $20 gift cards to employees who use them then give to to the charity of their choice), we think you’ll be interested to know that Take 2’s relationship to GlobalGiving is very personal and accessible. We learned of GlobalGiving from a neighbor who worked there. GlobalGiving's creative and enthusiastic staff have helped us in a variety of ways that have benefitted our shoestring operation. They boosted Take 2 in a local radio show earlier this year and obtained newspaper coverage of our camp the year before. They have connected us with numerous small donors we would not have reached otherwise and provide us a platform for communicating with our supporters. We're proud that GlobalGiving thinks of us as one of their success stories and we hope you'll feel good about giving to us through such a terrific organization.
Here’s a link to our Project Page on Global Giving, where you can make your donation on a one-time basis or as a monthly recurring contribution. http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/teaching-children-with-autism/.
In addition, here’s a link to a really terrific story that ran on the front page of the Sunday New York Times a few weeks ago, describing the challenges that face individuals with autism spectrum disorders as they transition to adulthood. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/18/us/autistic-and-seeking-a-place-in-an-adult-world.html?_r=1&scp=5&sq=autism&st=cse (Autistic and Seeking a Place in an Adult World)
At Take 2 we know it takes more than strong cognitive ability and verbal skills to succeed at work and in the community. Take 2 helps children in their quest to obtain the keys to the social kingdom we all live in. Please give as generously as you can as early as possible on Wednesday, October 19th. We thank you very much.
Warmly and gratefully,
Lynn Cannon, Monica Adler Werner & Lisa Greenman
We just wrapped up another wonderful summer at Take2. The campers and staff have much to be proud of: they worked hard, learned a lot and, most importantly, had a lot of fun along the way. Each camper celebrated so many successes, whether it was….
This summer’s curriculum focused on:
- Week 1: “Thinking about Me” Labeling my own emotional experience and what strategies I can use to regulate myself when my feelings start to get out of control.
- Week 2: “Thinking about You”- How do I use the your “clues”… body language, tone of voice and facial expression to figure out what you are thinking and feeling?
- Week 3: “Thinking about Us”- How do my thoughts differ from yours? How does my behavior impact the thoughts you are having and how can we create good thoughts in one another so that you want to be with me and I want to be with you?
- Week 4: “Bringing it all Together”- The strategies and skills the campers acquired over the 3 weeks were put into action as we took several field trips and made gifts for one another.
Please enjoy these photos for a glimpse of some of the wonderful moments we had this year at camp. As always, we are so grateful for your support.
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