Our online community has asked our staff to provide ten (10) reasons for why people should donate to The Autism Research Foundation this holiday season. Is it cliche to say that the hardest part of this challenge was narrowing down our reasons to such a short list? Well, it was!
Here is our cheat sheet for why you should consider giving a gift to a charity that gives all year-round:
- The Autism Research Foundation is the first medically-accredited autism research charity in the world. Our longevity proves we have stood the test of time as a trusted authority in the field.
- Dr. Margaret Bauman spearheads our research. She is the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award of the International Society for Autism Research among an impressive 92-page curriculum vitae. It’s single-spaced! (And you can read it here.)
- We believe donations should pass through us, not to us. Whether you donate to research or a conference — or anything in between — your donation makes an immediate impact on the community we serve.
- Our charity operates entirely on volunteers. Between internships and returning helpers, our community donates their time and talent repeatedly each year — even as they move onto full-time careers elsewhere. That’s a testament to our mission and its why we can keep our overhead costs so low.
- We admit that we do not know it all, but we are so motivated to try! An autism diagnosis lasts a lifetime, and with it comes a lifetime of experiences that really do make the day-to-day tasks harder. We research to help you make better sense of the autism experience, and we aren’t too proud to say that there’s a long way to go, but you’ve got a friend in us and we are happy to help you along the way.
- Every staff member of The Autism Research Foundation is required to spend time in an autism clinic and an autism inclusion program: speaking with the people who live with autism everyday and building relationships with the parents/caregivers who help them navigate that different life. When you speak to a TARF staff member, you can be sure that they have a closer understanding of what you’re going through first-hand.
- You can make donations in tribute to someone you value — check a gift (or ten!) off your list! We will send anyone — your best friend, child’s teacher, neighbor, therapist, or the President — a card letting him/her know you were thinking of them.
- We believe in a whole-person, whole-body understanding of autism: that you need to invest time in getting to know the person who happens to have autism first, before getting to know their autism characteristics.
- Every year, we host The Autism Research Consortium to encourage collaborative work across all healthcare and science disciplines. We share our information with an exclusive, small, and trusted network of professionals who are genuinely committed to helping families over raising illegitimate dollars from big corporate sponsors. Truthfully, we’d rather be poor and be able to sleep at night with a free conscience.
- Our doors are open to you. Anytime. We never turn families away from services for an inability to pay and we encourage supporters to walk-through our lab and learn what their donations, volunteer hours, and passion contribute to every day.
Courtney and the TARF staff