2020 Spring

ACCEPTS, Inc

Summer Social/Scholarship & Supervision
Awarded
$2,500

ACCEPTS, Inc  provides alternative communication training to youth and adults with autism  and related disabilities. There are two programs in which the grant  will support: 1) a Weekly Social Skills Typing Group and 2) The Scholarship  and Supervision program. The Social Skills Training Group will meet 1  hour a week for 8 weeks, and allow communicators the opportunity to type with  one another. In addition, it will provide an opportunity for  Facilitators and Coaches-in-training to work with new communicators in a  structured, supervised environment.  During the social skills group,  facilitators will gain knowledge to apply in facilitating current  communicators. The scholarship program offers families the opportunity to receive discount  coaching from coaches-in-training who are supervised by an accredited  trainer.

Ability Tree First Coast, Inc.

CampAbility Special Day Camp
Awarded
$1,250

CampAbility is an educational and recreational summer services program for elementary-aged children with Autism and other intellectual/developmental/physical  disabilities, provided in a fun and safe environment. We also offer summer  camp sessions to the siblings. By doing this, we hope to help alleviate the  burden on parents by keeping their children in one location, provide comfort  to the camper with special needs by having someone familiar nearby, and  include the sibling(s) by offering them companionship with other siblings who walk in their shoes.

Angelwood, Inc.

Angelwood Career Development & Education Center Arts Program
Awarded
$1,051.20

Angelwood’s  Career Development and Education Center is a dual focused program providing  Employment Services and Adult Day Training. Angelwood offers employment  services through the Florida Department of Education, Vocational  Rehabilitation and through the Agency for Persons with Disabilities via  referrals.  
   Supported Employment- This program targets persons who need added structure  and support to achieve and maintain competitive employment in their community.  Supported Employment Coaches work with each individual with all aspects of  finding, applying for, obtaining, and retaining a job. This includes  necessary social, independent, and work skills they will need on the  job.  They are also assisted with  creating a resume as well as taught important skills such as proper work  attire, hygiene, etiquette. Once a job is obtained, the Supported Employment  Coach is there to help with any area of need, such as: training, work place  problems, and help with co-worker and supervisor communication, etc.
   Adult Day Training (ADT) – Our adult day program provides supervision and  training for adults with cognitive or physical limitations to learn work  related skills and to experience the joy and rewards of productivity while  also enabling them to earn money. The curriculum builds on work-related  skills that translate into the business world. The goal is that the program  participants are provided a variety of ways to develop skills that will help  them gain greater independence in hopes of one day finding a job in the  mainstream workplace. Participants learn important skills such as stocking  inventory, counting money, shredding office papers, and learn cleaning and  maintenance tasks. In addition, they also produce original works of art,  handmade soaps, scarves, beaded jewelry, and note cards. Items may be  purchased at area craft shows, gift stores and other venues. One special  addition to our arts-based program is The Bells of Angelwood, a hand bell  choir that preforms in the community and has recently partnered with Brooks  Rehabilitation and Jacksonville University for a community concert.

Arc of the St. Johns

Summer Camp
Awarded
$1,500

The grant will be applied to the after school program summer camp and some equipment purchased will be shared with The Arc of the St. Johns Community Campus. The program will provided the individuals with meaningful summertime activities. The staff will use peer-reviewed strategies to enable students with behavioral issues associated with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities(I/DD) to be work towards building skills with the aim of reintroduction to a classroom environment with peers of similar ages and interests, and to have meaningful access to the community in the form of recreational activities, civic responsibilities, and social interests.

BASCA, Inc.

Community Inclusion
Awarded
$2,500

BASCA's request is to fund a portion of our Community Inclusion program.  We provide various low, no-cost, outings  during the year.  However, we believe  it is important for individuals with differences to occasionally participate  in broader community enrichment activities.  

Bit of Faith Ranch Inc.

Adaptive horse backing lessons/activities and other outdoor recreational, social events
Awarded
$2,500

To provide free  or minimal cost equine-assisted and other recreational activities for  contributing positively to the cognitive, physical, emotional and social  well-being of persons with Autism and their families.  Individuals will participate in either  adaptive riding sessions or ground activities on an on-going basis with the  aid of side walkers and/or horse handlers.   There will also be recreational ranch events where larger groups will  be able to socialize i.e. BBQ, barnyard yoga etc.

BridgeHaven Academy

Summer Camp/Enrichment Program
Awarded
$2,500

BridgeHaven  Summer Camp Program will provide enrichment experiences utilizing technology  and communication for individuals affected by autism.  Our campers will be able to participate in  thematic summer camp programs with a low staff/camper ratio enabling us to  provide physical, emotional, and therapeutic support for each camper. We are  a unique camp/school that utilizes typing as a viable means of communication  for nonverbal individuals with autism.   Summer camp is the opportunity for typers across Jacksonville to come  together and participate.  We are the  only facility that offers typing and support for individuals who use this  means of communication.  If for some  reason, we cannot have camp on our campus due to COVID 19, we would use the  grant to pay our teachers to offer private sessions with each camper.  They would be able to provide the same  thematic activities and enrichment in their individual sessions with our  students, as well as even offering some virtual opportunities.

Collage Day School

Hands-On Curriculum Development (STEAM)
Awarded
$1,000


Collage Day School’s Learning Enrichment Achievement Program (LEAP) is a  program designed to optimize instruction during the school day for students  with differing abilities in the domains of curriculum and learning,  social/emotional, communication, and independent functioning. Students  receive instruction from a teacher(s) trained in various modalities and  learning methods to ensure the needs of each student are met. Students work  with the teacher and support staff to create a prescriptive schedule allowing  students to progress with individual learning, social emotional,  communication, and independent functioning goals. Weekly progress monitoring  is provided to ensure that students are on track to achieve all of their  goals.

Daniel Memorial, Inc.

Daniel Academy Yoga and Mindfulness Enhancement Program
Awarded
$1,500

One signature agency program at Daniel Memorial is Daniel Academy, our specialized  elementary private school (K-7) dedicated to providing intensive academic and  behavioral for children who have been diagnosed with emotional, learning,  intellectual and developmental disabilities across a wide spectrum, including  autism.  The 43 students enrolled at  Daniel Academy are the very children who have fallen through the cracks in  the public education system because their needs have not been met at critical  developmental junctures.

The school exists because studies show that the farther that disabled  and/or economically disadvantaged children fall below their peers during  elementary and middle school, the more likely that they will drop out of  school by age 16, thus limiting their options to transition to independence  as adults.  Daniel Academy seeks to  improve the outcomes for these children through enhancements such as  mindfulness yoga, art, music, and social skills development. Many children  receive on-site mental health services. The school has fully integrated the  evidence-based “Trust-Based Relational Intervention” model to establish  strong bonds between school personnel and the children.

The purpose for this grant request is to fund weekly yoga classes for all  children during the  2020-2021 school  year. While the Florida Department of Education scholarships provide  sufficient funds for core services, such as academic instruction and facility management, grant funds are needed for critical enhancements that are known  to make significant impact of the student body. We know from the literature  and from prior experience that children that are exposed to yoga and  mindfulness, especially those with intellectual and developmental  disabilities, experience a reduction of pain, anxiety, aggression, obsessive  behaviors, and self-stimulatory activities. While their strength and  flexibility also improves, the most important benefit is the improved ability  to regulate emotions (thus decreasing stress and anxiety). Subsequently, they  are able better able to establish the strong peer, family and other adult  bonds that are critical for normal childhood development.

Growing Together Behavioral Center

GTBC Summer Outings Summer 2020
Awarded
$1,000

Growing Together  will once again use our summer funds for field trips for our students.  We will take one field trip per week as an  entire school, and will also take our oldest students out on one community  outing per week.  Community outings  will consist of trips to Publix, Walmart, Chick Fil A, and the  laundromat.  Field trips for everyone  will include some fun and some fun-educational locations such as Velocity/Fit  Flight, Cummer Museum, MOSH, O2B Kids and more!

Henderson Haven, Inc

Summer Programs/Service Bear Project
Awarded
$2,000

10-week summer program. Funds will help provide learning in a fun environment while promoting age-appropriate social skills. Each week we will provide participants with an awesome fun summer experience. We will utilize community resources and volunteers to enhance the experience.

Families report better behavior, improved social skills, and a drive to want to achieve more. Participants in the activities get to experience summer  fun activities many children take for granted, as well as continue to work on academics. They explore new activities and begin to ignite passions for recreational fun that carries over into the rest of the year. This kindled  passion in these students leads to students gaining independence and thus less dependency on families and the State of Florida for support. We help each student discover their gifts and talents and develop them into job and living skills.

We are also working on a Service Bear Project to provide weighted stuffed  bears to assist with behavioral needs at home, assist with bed-time issues as  well as providing support when a family is out in the community.

Hope Haven

Camp Hope
Awarded
$2,500

Camp Hope is a  summer camp enrichment program tailored for children and youth ages 3-22 with  special needs, including developmental, intellectual, physical, and  social/emotional challenges. Siblings and peers without special needs are  welcome.  A camp session operates  Monday-Friday from 7:30 am-5:30 pm and includes field trips, sports, arts and  crafts, and academic and social skills development.  Because it is based on Hope Haven’s campus,  families can add the benefit of therapy to a child’s day, including speech,  OT, PT, counseling, or applied behavior therapy.

Hope Therapy, Inc

Scholarship Program
Awarded
$1,250

Hope Therapy  provides Healing with the Help of the Horse for special needs children with a  wide variety of diagnoses, including autism, developmental delays, Down  Syndrome and more.  During the Covid-19  pandemic, we have developed a specialized teletherapy program to keep our  patients moving forward in their therapy goals.  Thus far we have experienced a high rate of  success and patient satisfaction, and plan to continue teletherapy and some  in-home visits as long as necessary.
      Horses For Hope ~ In partnership  with Ronald McDonald  House, Hope  Therapy also visits hospitalized children facing life threatening illness and  debilitating chronic conditions. The children are able to interact with our  ponies, feeding and petting them for a bright spot in their otherwise  challenging day.  Each child receives a  small plush toy pony in remembrance of the occasion, with a tag that reads,  ‘good for one free pony ride at Hope Therapy’.   Their smiles tell the story, as faces  light up with anticipation and a goal is set for their future. The idea of a  free pony ride and a toy to remind them rekindle hope,  providing incentive to view the future in a  more positive light.  

     

Indigo Art Therapy Studio

Summer Art + Mindfulness Groups
Awarded
$1,750

During the  summer, Indigo Art Therapy will be offering adaptive Art + Mindfulness Groups  for individuals with autism. We will be providing separate groups for kids  and teens, either virtually or in-person, depending on student needs and  recommended public health practices.

Jacksonville School for Autism Inc

2020 Summer Enrichment
Awarded
$2,500

The funding will provide students and their siblings the opportunity to  experience a broad range of summer enrichment programs. In past years we have  been gifted the opportunity to provide experiences including piano, therapeutic horseback riding, music & art groups, zoo trips, surfing  experiences, dolphin interactions, and other community field trips. For most children on the autism spectrum, the abrupt change of a schedule that  transitions from school to summer can be a challenge.  To facilitate comfort in regards to this  transition, JSA offers an intensive learning continuum along with a focus on  physical activity and social fun" during the summer months. JSA gladly includes siblings of students with ASD into our summer  program.  This extension comes from our  understanding of the financial and logistic difficulties parents with  multiple children encounter during the summer months.  Inclusion of our typical siblings is also  important to build positive experiences and relationships with their ASD  brother/sister.


Jacksonville Sheriff's Office - Crisis Negotiations Unit

Communicating with individuals on the autism spectrum for Crisis Negotiators
Awarded
$1,200

The Crisis  Negotiations Unit of the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office supports the mission  of the agency in serving and protecting in partnership with our  community.  In this mission the Unit  encounters a wide variety of individuals in crisis for a number of  reasons.  The Unit spends much of its  time studying a wide variety of psychological traits, communication  strategies, and operating procedures; all with the goal of preserving the  lives of individuals in crisis through verbal communication.  As the team seeks to expand its  knowledge-base, it is interested in learning more about the autism spectrum  and how we can better communicate with persons on the autism spectrum in crisis.  The funds granted will go directly toward  obtaining training in these areas through a known provider with expertise in  this field.  It is the Team’s hope that  this will enhance the ability to produce a favorable outcome during such an  encounter.  Through this effort, it is  the Team’s objective to fulfill the Sheriff’s Core Values of “Always  Improving”, “Community Focused”, and “Respect for Each Other”.

Jericho School

Rock the Spectrum Summer
Awarded
$1,680

For our Intensive  Summer Program The Jericho School would like to provide the opportunity for  children with autism a fun and motivational environment to help them in the  areas of strength, movement, sensory processing, communication, positive  behavior modification, social interactions, and self-care skills once a week at We Rock The Spectrum, an all inclusive gym in Jacksonville, Florida.

Kids Connect Today

Social skills classes
Awarded
$2,500

Kids Connect Today is a social skills program for children, teens and young adults with  autism. Kids Connect  Today will use grant funds to provide scholarships to families who cannot  afford our classes.

Palm Avenue Exceptional Student Center

Memory books / Yearbooks
Awarded
$1,420

We are requesting  funding for the cost to print memory books/yearbooks. Throughout the year, we  capture many memories and the memory book/yearbook is something every student  looks forward to at the end of the school year. The yearbook is not only a  memory book but a communication tool for the students. Students who are  non-verbal can communicate the school they are from, their teachers, friends  and all the activities they were apart of throughout the school year.

Palm Valley Child Development Center

Cooperative Play/ Mindfulness Garden
Awarded
$1,250

Multi-sensory and physically engaging materials allow our learners to explore independently and with others, building personal confidence and building play and social skills with peers. The funds will be used to purchase materials and equipment that will aid in all students further developing and participating in social skills, play skills, and adaptive skills. Additionally, included are stepping stones for a mindfulness pathway to allow students to individualize and create a stepping stone. These steppingstones (concrete forms the students can decorate and imprint with their handprint) will create a pathway for the students to utilize outdoors. Students can use the mindfulness pathway for sensory breaks, self-regulation, and coping skills. Below are links to materials that aid in facilitating hands-on materials that are necessary for students to increase exposure to new resources. This grant would serve in excess of 25 students with Autism for the 2019-2020 School year.This grant would also serve other students with varying exceptionalities including, but not limited to: students with specific learning disabilities, reading disabilities, language impairments, Down’s syndrome, developmental disabilities, other health impairments, communication impairments, language impairments, ADHD and ADD.

Peace of Heart Farm

Vocational Enrichment Program
Awarded
$1,500

Peace of Heart  Farm is a 1 acre organic garden located within a residential group home for  young adults with autism.  Peace of  Heart Farm has launched a Vocational Enrichment Program, an inclusion program  for young adults affected by autism to engage with nondisabled peers in a  community setting.  The Vocational  Enrichment Program teaches participants farm related vocational life skills  such as seeding, transplanting, harvesting, and business practices pertaining  to the farm.  The participants work  alongside peer volunteers to assist them in task completion, with the serene  backdrop of nature and the mutually beneficial  fostering of meaningful relationships.  The Vocational Enrichment Program will  expand their reach by partnering with local community farms for educationally  infused field trips.  
Peace of Heart Farm also offers a “Farm to Doorstep” Produce Delivery  service, in which residents of the home assist in assembling and delivering  produce to community members

Peace of Heart Home

Better Together/PohCAMP
Awarded
$1,500

Peace of Heart  Home is requesting a grant for two specific summer programs: a) Gather  Together: a twice monthly social group offered to community members affected  by autism, and b) PohCAMP: a vocational, social, and health focused summer  camp for residents and respite clients.

   “Better Together” - Due to the recent global health crisis, social  isolation has greatly impacted those who are medically fragile or have  special needs such as autism.  At Peace  of Heart Home, we will offer a happy, healthy, and “socially distant  friendly” environment for individuals with autism to have a home away from  home.  We will host a twice monthly  social gathering for teens and young adults.   The program will offer alternative communication conversations,  socialization with peers, activities promoting motor skills development, and  most importantly - FUN!  Program  offerings will include water activities, interactive games, video games,  cooking/baking lessons, physical fitness, and social bonding.  

   “PohCAMP: Cultivating A Meaningful Purpose” The onsite summer camp will  allow for meaningful and engaging activities for resident and respite  clients.  Activities will focus on  acquisition of life tasks, increasing social/community opportunities, and  building health and wellness from the inside out.  The goal of CAMP aligns with the mission of  PoH: To create a meaningFULL life for those affected by autism.  

Puzzle Peace Counseling, LLC

Summer autism support groups
Awarded
$1,500

Our summer  "HEALing Families" Groups will include social skills for teens on  the autism spectrum, as well as a parent group. Therapists Katherine Lycke, LMFT and Janeen Herskovitz, LMHC will lead the groups. These are programs  that have been running consistently for several years, but with the recent  pandemic, we are prepared to take these online via Zoom, a platform we have  been using during the past two months to see clients and groups in our  practice. The groups will meet weekly for six consecutive weeks.

Reach Academy, Inc.

S.T.E.A.Ming Through Summer Virtual Summer Camp
Awarded
$2,121.53

Reach Academy's  S.T.E.A.Ming through Summer Program will be a 6-week summer program focusing  on social skills and S.T.E.A.M. Each week, the camp will provide three  hands-on video lessons with the teacher and one face to face outing per week.  The summer program will provide social skills education with engaging and  interactive S.T.E.A.M activities.

   S.T.E.A.M is an acronym for science, technology, engineering, art, and  math. We decided to begin a summer camp due to parent demand. Many families  reached out with the need for a summer program due to summer camp closures  caused by COVID-19.

   Our students have been utilizing video chats during quarantine to maximize  their at home virtual learning experience. This was a crucial component in  making at home learning a success. Classroom parents commented on how the  consistent, scheduled video chats were important in boosting their child's  moral and mental health. During this crisis, our students are struggling to  understand why we can't be together at school. Incorporating video chats and  video lessons to each day have helped our students manage this difficult  change.

Special Nation

Special Nation/HEAL Annual Spring Fling
Awarded
$1,250

Spring Fling is a dance for persons with Autism and their friends and families.  This is the fifth year we have planned this dance.  It is a quieter, more gentle gathering based on a beach, surf and Hawaiian theme. It is an opportunity for children, teens and young adults to gather with their friends and families for a dance.  We provide beautiful decorations, snacks, drinks, music, photos and party favors for attenders.  

Spectrum Thrift Store

Store Development
Awarded
$1,000

Everyone deserves to thrive. That simple statement is at the heart of the mission of Spectrum Thrift Store, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide employment opportunities to teens and adults with autism and developmental delays. Since Spectrum’s highly qualified board and staff began retail operations at its store in St. Johns County, Florida in 2017, the organization has provided training and employment opportunities to over 100 individuals with special abilities. Ten have since been hired by other companies. Spectrum’s vision is to expand to operate a facility in each county in Florida, each one a thrift store and training site where 90% of employees are autistic or developmentally delayed. We are expanding our work at our recently opened second location. This expansion will enable us to train and/or employ 85 additional individuals with special abilities each year.

2020 Fall

Abess Park Elementary

CSS program
Awarded
$1,000

The  CSS program for Abess Park Elementary is the only all Pre-K CSS department in  Duval County.  We have 7 classrooms  with students whose age ranges from 3-5.   We provide support for children diagnosed with language impairments,  ASD, developmentally delayed, and varying exceptionalities.  All of our students receive speech and  language therapy, most receive occupational therapy, and some receive  physical therapy.  As teachers we  provide emotional, academic, and behavior supports for the children and their  families.  We are highly regarded  within our community and continually strive for success and independent  functioning of our students.  We  utilize ABA strategies to mange behavior and provide constant love and  support for our students, families, community, and our staff.  As a Duval county public school our funding  is based on the district's budget which is scarce.  As we returned to brick and mortar our  supplies are outdated and carpets, etc, have been used and abused over the  years.  We are in desperate need for  new materials particularly coming back during a pandemic.  Any contribution, funding, and grant will  be utilized to the utmost ability and provide a new and improved classroom  environment for our students.

Bit of Faith Ranch

Safety Equipment
Awarded
$1,500

Purchase additional adaptive and safety equipment to create  the best experience possible for the participants. We offer free or minimal  cost equine assisted and other recreational activities to contribute  positively to the cognitive physical emotional and social well being of  individuals with autism and their families. Individuals will participate in  adaptive riding sessions or ground activities on an ongoing basis with the  aid of sidewalkers and horse handlers.   Plan to have social and recreational events for participants and their  families including a Family Fun Day and Moms' Retreat.  
   Riding. Recreation. Respite.


BridgeHaven Communication

BridgeHaven Communication Clinic
Awarded
$1,500

BridgeHaven  Academy was founded in 2016 to provide a challenging learning environment  that values the right for accessible and effective communication.  We discovered there was a huge need in our  community to train parents in various methods of communication so that  nonspeaking individuals would be able to effectively communicate in their  natural settings, so we have started BridgeHaven Communication Clinic to  serve our community.   It is our belief  that through presuming competence and valuing the basic human right of  communication, meaningful opportunities for inclusion will happen.

Connecting Thru Music, Inc

Music Experience and Music Therapy for Children with Special Needs in Northeast Florida
Awarded
$1,000

Connecting  Thru Music, Inc is a 501c3 non-profit established in 2018 for the purpose of  providing music experiences and music therapy to children with special needs  in Northeast Florida.  Currently CTM is  providing services either in-person or virtually at over a dozen schools and  settings. We desperately need funding for our in-school services at Neptune  Beach Elementary and Mandarin Oaks Elementary and the programs which take  place during the school day.

Daniel Memorial, Inc.

Daniel Academy Educational Field Trip Program
Awarded
$790

One  signature agency program at Daniel Memorial is Daniel Academy, our  specialized elementary private school (K-7) dedicated to providing intensive  academic and behavioral for children who have been diagnosed with emotional,  learning, intellectual and developmental disabilities across a wide spectrum,  including autism. The school exists because studies show that the farther  that disabled and/or economically disadvantaged children fall below their  peers during elementary and middle school, the more likely that they will  drop out of school by age 16, thus limiting their options to transition to  independence as adults.  Daniel Academy  seeks to improve the outcomes for these children through enhancements such as  mindfulness yoga (courtesy of HEAL!), art, social skills development and  on-site mental health services. The school has fully integrated the  evidence-based “Trust-Based Relational Intervention” model to establish  strong bonds between school personnel and children.

   This grant request comprises funding for four exciting educational field  trips for the 2020-2021 student body, two of which are virtual. The field  trips include the Jacksonville Zoo, the Cummer Museum and the COVID friendly  FSCJ Artist Services educational films, including Chicken Dance and Numbers  Don’t Lie: The Truth About How Math Has Changed Civilization.

Duval County Schools - Melissa G.

Speech Language Pathologist Materials for ESE Classes
Awarded
$1,000

I work  for the Duval County district as a contracted SLP. I am in need of funding  for materials to support my services virtually and on campus for my ESE kids.  I have over 64 students between two schools in the district with minimal  funding. Any amount would be helpful in providing materials, PPE, and  equipment such as colored printer, laminator, ink, etc.

Fleming Island Elementary

Pre-K & Primary ASD Playground
Awarded
$1,000

The  preschool and Primary ASD student playground is in dire need of all new  equipment. Many items are broken or breaking and are so old that we can not  get replacements. We have asked our PFA to make this a funding priory, however with the  restrictions for COVID-19, many of our larger fundraising events have been  cancelled for this year. If we could get the grant to purchase 1-2 smaller  items, then PFA could focus on getting one of the larger items on our wish  list.

Greenwood School

SEL Classrooms
Awarded
$500

The  Greenwood School currently serves 171 students in grades sixth through  twelve, the majority of whom have diagnosed learning differences and/or other  difficulties that impact their learning. Some of the learning differences  include—but are not limited to—high-functioning autism spectrum disorders,  dyslexia, dysgraphia, developmental delays, attention deficit/hyperactivity  disorder (ADHD), delays in visual and auditory processing, visual/motor  integration, short-term memory deficits, etc. Our staff use a variety of  multi-sensory approaches and teaching methods to allow students to  successfully engage with the curriculum. Sixty-seven percent (67%) of the  students attend high school and all graduates earn a traditionally tracked  diploma. The curriculum is guided by the Florida Standards, and Greenwood is  fully accredited by the Florida Council of Independent Schools (FCIS).

   Our SEL program currently consists of a guidance based class in every grade  level, 6th through 12th grade, and focuses on social competencies and  team building  in our lower grades. The classes develop  throughout high school, where the students focus on study skills, public  speaking, critical thinking and college / career planning through senior  year. These classes are conducted in small group settings of around 10  children and form the backbone of our curriculum here at Greenwood. As well  as this compulsory class which each student is required to take each  year,  social thinking is infused  throughout the day into every class. Many students who use ABA therapy, find  these classes compliment the one to one work they do in their therapy, and  sometimes replace the need for the ABA therapy classes completely.

Hope Haven Association, Inc.

Mental Health Support for Employment Services Clients
Awarded
$1,000

Funds  will provide financial assistance to students engaged in Employment and  Transition Services who require additional mental health support  services.  Programs include:

   • Hope Academy - a business-led collaboration that helps young adults with  special needs develop job skills through internships that teach them how to  gain and maintain employment.   This is  a one-year program that engages students from 7:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Monday  through Friday. The primary goal is paid employment.  

   • Employment Services – Certified and experienced employment professionals  provide job search and employment assistance to individuals with disabilities  who want to find or maintain a job.   Participants receive interview and resume training, job search  guidance, and on-site job training.

   • Employment Camp – a two-week intensive experience designed to give  employment-eligible students with special needs direction on gaining and  maintaining employment.

   • Paid On-the-Job Training at Hope Haven - On-campus trainers help interns  in various departments acclimate to the employment environment while gaining  experience as a paid staff member.

Indigo Art Therapy Studio

Art + Yoga Materials + Equipment
Awarded
$1,000

Indigo  Art Therapy Studio will be partnering with HEAL to create specialized  art-to-go kits, designed to meet the needs of individuals with autism  enrolled in virtual programming. Additionally, we plan to bring our inclusive  and adaptive art + yoga mindfulness programs to classrooms and studios  throughout the community through our outreach programming.

Jacksonville School for Autism

JSA Staff Technology Project
Awarded
$1,000

Jacksonville  School for Autism (JSA) invites the HEAL Foundation to come alongside our  mission to provide funding in the amount of $1,000.00 to supplement the JSA  Staff Technology Project. At JSA, we follow an integrative model that blends  both academic and social elements.  Our  teachers and therapists require new, updated laptops and software that will  allow them to monitor the progress of our students through their individual  learning programs. Technology is at the core of all student and program  management at JSA. Staff currently utilize a proprietary software system  which allows teachers to track and measure skill and behavioral targets as  well as implement and evaluate programs. Due to the ongoing pandemic and the  need for remote learning, we nee tp update laptops and software.

Jericho School

ESE Classrooms Sensory Materials and Equipment
Awarded
$1,000

This  grant would allow us to provide our ESE Classrooms with sensory materials and  equipment for children with autism. By making available a variety of  appropriate sensory stimulating fun and educating materials, we can enhance  the ability of children with autism to process and learn. We can also avoid  the predisposition that children with autism have to encompassing  preoccupation and restricted patterns of stereotyped and repetitive motor  mannerisms. Sensory stimulating equipment can also be utilized to reinforce  play skills, social interaction and communication skills with children with  autism.

Jewish Community Alliance

Sensory Safe Swimmers
Awarded
$1,000

Sensory  Safe Swimmers is a program geared specifically toward swimmers on the autism  spectrum. Studies have shown that children with autism are more likely to  drown than neurotypical swimmers. Through these specialized swim lessons,  swimmers are more likely to succeed in a quiet atmosphere with minimal noise  and distractions. The classes are designed with a 1:1 ratio with a certified  instructor, so more attention can be placed on swimmers’ needs.

   Thanks to the past generosity of HEAL, the JCA has provided scholarship  assistance to 10 children participating in this program. There are currently  ten children registered for this session of the Sensory Safe Swimmers  program. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, these lessons have been temporarily  postponed.

   No one should ever be denied swim lessons or being on a swim team due to  any physical or cognitive differences, and the JCA welcomes swimmers of all  ages and abilities to learn and be safe in the water.

Kids Connect Today

Social Skills Classes
Awarded
$1,500

We  offer social skills classes for children, teens and young adults with autism.  We work on specific goals such as sharing, turn taking, reciprocal  conversation, developing friendships and dealing with winning and  losing.

Mainspring Academy

Sensory Room
Awarded
$1,000

Mainspring  Academy is seeking to enhance and improve our sensory room equipment. We  would like to provide the best space for true sensory stimulation, calming,  and vestibular and tactile input that is appropriate for our students of all  ages, sizes, and needs.

North Florida School of Special Education

Occupational Therapy Equipment for Calm Classrooms
Awarded
$580

North  Florida School of Special Education is requesting a grant from the  HEAL Foundation to update and expand its Occupational Therapy equipment, a  component of the Calm Classroom/Mindfulness Program. HEAL Foundation has been  an integral partner to NFSSE over the years, and we hope you will join us in  equipping our classrooms for our students with autism!

   With the increased student enrollment that accompanied NFSSE’s campus  expansion, and the new COVID sanitation protocols, NFSSE is updating and  adding therapeutic resources that do not need to be shared among the growing  student body. Currently, NFSSE only has three weighted animals available for  use in the Christy and Lee Smith Lower School Campus. This funding would  allow us to equip all eight classrooms with occupational therapy equipment,  including weighted lap pads and animals to support student learning.

Oak Hill Academy

Sensory Garden
Awarded
$500

Oak  Hill Academy is requesting funding to create a sensory garden for our  students with Autism.  Research  indicates that individuals with Autism have sensory integration challenges  and often struggle to maintain focus and self-regulation.  The purpose of the sensory garden is to  provide our students with productive and holistic opportunities to be  outside, nurture their sensory systems and to socialize with their peers.  Our sensory garden would provide our  students with a calming and stimulating sensory experience to reduce stress  and anxiety and enrich their senses (touch, smell, taste, see, hear) while  providing vestibular and proprioception feedback (movement and balance).

Peace of Heart Community Farm

Raised Bed (private designation)
Awarded
$1,000

Join our community by becoming a raised bed partner! Our garden has raised beds piled full of organic soil. Purchase a bed for a year and reap the benefits of fresh, organic produce. Once you purchase a bed, we will grow, transplant and maintain your bed for you. You will be able to pick up your produce every Saturday from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. If there is a schedule change to the harvest pick-up, you will be notified the week before. *

Peace of Heart Community Farm

Farm & Community Enrichment Program
Awarded
$1,000

Peace of Heart Farm is a 1 acre organic garden located within a residential group  home for young adults with autism.   Peace of Heart Farm has launched a Vocational Enrichment Program, an  inclusion program for young adults affected by autism to engage with  non-disabled peers in a community setting.   The Vocational Enrichment Program teaches participants farm related  vocational life skills such as seeding, transplanting, harvesting, and  business practices pertaining to the farm.   The participants work alongside peer volunteers to assist them in task  completion, with the serene backdrop of nature and the mutually beneficial  fostering of meaningful relationships.  The Vocational Enrichment Program will  expand their reach by partnering with local community programs and  volunteers.

Peace of Heart Community, Inc.

Better Together
Awarded
$1,000

Peace of Heart Home is requesting a grant for our Fall program:  “Better Together” - Due to the recent  global health crisis, social isolation has greatly impacted those who are  medically fragile or have special needs such as autism.  At Peace of Heart Home, we will offer a  happy, healthy, and “socially distant friendly” environment for individuals  with autism to have a home away from home.   The program will offer alternative communication conversations,  socialization with peers, activities promoting motor skills development, and  most importantly - FUN!  Program  offerings will include hands on activities, interactive games, video games,  cooking/baking lessons, physical fitness to include pilates, yoga, art &  ju jitsu, as well as social bonding.  
   Our fall onsite program will allow for meaningful and engaging activities  for resident and respite clients.   Activities will focus on acquisition of life tasks, increasing  social/community opportunities, and building health and wellness from the  inside out.  The goal of the program  aligns with the mission of POH: To create a meaningFULL life for those  affected by autism.  

Pine Castle

Learning Workshop & Sensory Space
Awarded
$1,450

Pine  Castle provides skills training and employment opportunities for adults with  autism and intellectual or developmental disabilities (I/DD) in on-campus  workshops, and through partnership with local businesses, and city and state  employers. Our program fills a critical gap in day training for adults with  differences in the Jacksonville area. But even meaningful activity in the  various workshops can prove stressful for adults with autism and I/DD,  leading to “sensory overload”. HEAL’s generous grant in 2019 provided funding  for a learning workshop “make over” with new tables and chairs and fresh  paint. The HEAL Foundation Workshop now has a new calming “sensory space”  along with the updated production room furniture. The sensory space allows  adult participants to take a break when they are under stress and feel  overwhelmed giving adults with autism and I/DD the chance to rest, recover,  and return to their work or skills training. The sensory area’s soft  lighting, aromatherapy, fidget toys, and pleasant environment offers the  perfect spot for participants to de-escalate.

   But now we need to complete the renovation in The HEAL Foundation Workshop  with just a few additional touches:
   • Make baseboard repairs
   • Create additional storage for production materials
   • Purchase vibrant and inspirational large canvas prints
   • Add a few more learning items to the sensory area

Pinedale Elementary

Sensory Room
Awarded
$1,000

Pinedale  Elementary is title one school. It is home to students from prek-5th grade.  Pinedale has a program for students with communication and social skills  disorders which primarily serves students with Autism.

Reach Academy, Inc.

Music Therapy
Awarded
$1,000

A weekly 30 minute music therapy session  for our elementary grade level classroom. Mr. Jacob Schuman, our music teacher, will conduct a session for all the  students in the classroom that combines and encourages things like  vocalizations, turn-taking, labeling, and counting, that in turn benefits  students that need encouragement and support in language, cognitive,  receptive, physical and behavioral skills.

Ridgeview High School

The Fairy Garden-Phase 3
Awarded
$500

Our  goal is to maintain and expand our current classroom garden.  The purpose of the project is to educate  students about where food comes from and the nutritional benefits of eating  fruits, vegetables, and herbs.   Students who learn to grow their own food are more likely to eat  fruits and vegetables.  They are also  more likely to carry this healthy habit into adulthood, as well,  which can stave off diet-related disease  over a lifetime.  The students will  also benefit by having an outdoor classroom.   Gardens create an outdoor atmosphere that is great for kids with  different learning styles and abilities to work in groups and engage in  hands-on, cross disciplinary education.   School gardens are important because what we fee our children, and  what we teach them about food in school shapes how they learn, how they grow,  and how they live.  With only 2% of all  children that eat enough fresh fruits and vegetables this is very important  for important to their development.   The typical student receives approximately 3.4 hours of nutrition  education each year.

Ridgeview High School

Chromebooks for 9th-12th Varying Exceptionalities Self-Contained classroom
Awarded
$1,000

The  funds will be used to purchase 4 Dell Chromebooks for the classroom to  enhance my students' educational experience.

Ridgeview High School

Class set of chromebooks
Awarded
$1,000

I am  requesting a grant to fulfill an order of classroom chromebooks. I do not  have any desktops for my students to use. We often have a difficult time  going to the library to use the desktops there due to behaviors.

Ridgeview High School

Chromebooks for 9th-12th Varying Exceptionalities Self-Contained classroom
Awarded
$1,000

My  self-contained classroom consists of 7 Autism Spectrum Disorder 9th-12th  grade students. We are in need of a class set of Chromebooks to assist in  project based learning, literacy and cross curriculum learning and  development; also, integrating technology with learning is fun!

Ridgeview High School

Enhancing ASD self-contained classroom with educational toys and by building a sensory wall
Awarded
$1,000


   We have the awesome pleasure to work with amazing 9-12th grade Autism  Spectrum Disorder students, in a low-functioning/high-behavioral  self-contained classroom at Ridgeview High School. We began throwing ideas  around at the beginning of the school year on things we wanted to do in our  double-wide portable/classroom to enhance our kiddos educational experience.  Fortunately, now that we know our students interests better, we have some fun  and creative ideas we think they'll really love, including building a  sensational sensory wall and adding fun educational toys/sets in the room to  practice their academic, social and fine motor skills.

Ridgeview High School

Panther Challenge Transition Academy
Awarded
$1,000

Our  Panther Challenge Transition Program provides a structured, vocational  learning environment for ESE students. We focus on several learning areas  including daily living skills, money handling, hygiene, customer service, and  various job skills.
   Our classroom does many activities to ensure our students are exposed to as  many experiences as possible.  We have  a beautiful classroom garden where we grow herbs, vegetables, and flowers.  Students tend the garden with us and learn  landscaping skills throughout the school year.  It is also a place our students can choose  to relax in.  We have different seating  options to choose from (outdoor rocking chair, bench, swing, hammock chair).  
   This school year we will also be offering custom greeting cards to staff  for purchase.  Our students will become  familiar with the Cricut Joy and the card making process along with learning  the skills necessary to fill custom orders.
   The biggest venture our classroom takes on each year is our coffee  shop!  This is an amazing way for our  students to learn real world skills while having an enormous, positive effect  on our school culture. We would love to be able to expand our coffee shop and  offer more products this year by adding an espresso machine to our arsenal.  
   In our classroom we truly believe that our students deserve the same  opportunities as their peers and we want to do everything in our power to  provide them with anything we can imagine!

Ridgeview High School

Chromebooks
Awarded
$1,000

At  this current time, the needs of my classroom is to help my students further  explore content/subject/topics with independent research via the internet.

Ridgeview High School ESE Art Class

Ridgeview High School ESE Art Class Activities
Awarded
$1,000

Ridgeview  High School has the largest ESE/ASD population in Northeast Florida and meets  the academic, physical, and social needs of over 140 student’s grades  9-12.  Within the Exceptional Education  department there is a Performing Arts ESE class where students are exposed to  many of the facets of the Fine Arts.   With the grant money opportunities to be creative and express oneself  through art will be made possible.

Westside High School

Sensory Room
Awarded
$700

Westside  High is a Title 1 school dedicated to serving students with autism.  We are in the process of setting up a  sensory room and are in need of sensory support.  The room is going to have a variety of  sensory items. The  grant money will be used to setup a sensory room for our special needs students, by  purchasing a variety of sensory items.