WOD an Event

Last Sunday we had the privilege of meeting an amazing community of athletes.  Men and women of every age, size, and ability participated in a Workout Of the Day at Crossfit Takeover to benefit Camp Gonnawannagoagin’.  The Cave Mama’s, Deb Feinman and Amy Volk, are two incredibly motivated and compassionate parents of camp volunteer peer buddies.  These wonderful women value the experience that their children have had at our camp and wanted to give back.  With the support of Crossfit Takeover coaches and co-owners, Ryan and Andy, the WOD for Autism was a huge success raising more than $1,800 for camper scholarships this summer!  To check out the action click here.

F.A.C.T Families Raise the Roof

Our first annual ( we’re definitely doing this again) Valentine’s dance was tremendous. More than 150 people came out to eat, play, and dance their hearts out. Special thanks to DJs J-Roc and Spellz, Virginia Beach Friends School, Virginia Beach Photo Booth,Lucid Step Team, dance instructors and all our volunteers and VCRA for sponsoring our socials with a generous grant this year .

 

To see a sampling of the fun click here

GonnawannaGOALagin was a huge success

We are so proud of all our players! Everyone exceeded our expectations and made great strides.
To view our budding athletes Score here

VBYSC brings a priceless opportunity to children in Virginia Beach

Virginia beach youth services club (VBYSC) brings ican shine bike camp to local children with autism

VBYSC brings a priceless opportunity to children in Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach, VA, February 6, 2015– Local children and teens with autism have learned the priceless skill of riding a bike because of the kind people of the Virginia Beach Youth Services Club (VBYSC). The VBYSC is a local non-profit organization that raises money specifically for charities that support children in Virginia Beach. With the endorsement of FACT’s sponsor, police Captain Mike Ronan, the VBYSC granted Families of Autistic Children in Tidewater (FACT) $6,000 in order to bring an invaluable opportunity to local children with autism: the iCan Shine Bike Program. This program teaches children with disabilities to learn to ride a bike independently in just five consecutive 75-minute sessions. The success of this camp was astounding, conveying an almost 100% success rate.

20 year VBYSC member and sponsor for FACT, police Captain Mike Ronan commented, “We put all of our effort into raising the maximum money to donate to our charities.” These honorable men do not put money into advertising themselves, nor do they write themselves a paycheck. Their only priority is to raise money for these children’s charities. Captain Ronan added that their intention is to help the charities that “impact the most amount of kids in order to provide the furthest reaching effect.”

For 5 years now, FACT has been the beneficiary of the VBYSC’s charitable ways, including two years of iCan Shine Bike camp, a bus for camp, and imperative software programs. Comprised of about 100 men from Virginia Beach, the VBYSC raises about $100,000 for local children’s charities. In their 40 years of existence, they continue to do what they do simply for the sake of the cause, not needing any attention or glam for themselves.

Indoor Soccer clinic

soccerclinicGonnawannaGoalagin’

We are getting such a “kick” out of our new soccer clinic.  All the kids are learning to control the ball and work with their teammates.  We couldn’t be more proud of our coaches, volunteers, and especially our players.

Kick here to score fun!

Teen Night-Karoake

karoakeWe are Rock Stars!

and country stars, and pop stars too. Teen Night gathered at Wannabe’s Karaoke this weekend for a show of our talent and team spirit. We laughed and cheered and sang along as our friends performed their favorite songs. Thanks to Bonnie and her crew at Wannabe’s. They always treat us like the stars that we are.

Click here to see more of the fun.

psychology club

FACT visits Princess Ann High School

FACT visits Princess Ann High School

On Wednesday 1/14 FACT addressed the Lighthouse club at P.A. FACT visits local high schools to discuss autism, volunteer opportunities, anti-bullying, and inclusion.  Identifying ways that young people can reach out to individuals with autism in their school community can make a real impact.  F.A.C.T. has always relied on peer volunteers to create an inclusive environment in all our programs.  WE thank the students and teachers at P.A. for their interest in helping and engaging our students.

The We Promise Foundation Purchases a 44 passenger bus for local autism camp

we promise karaoke, big checkThe We Promise Foundation Purchases a 44 passenger bus for local autism camp Camp Gonnawannagoagin’ now has reliable transportation, thanks to an $11,000 grant from The We Promise Foundation

Virginia Beach, VA,– Local social and recreational camp for autism, Camp Gonnawanngoagin’, finally has a means of reliable transportation. Each year, Camp Gonnawannagoagin’ takes hundreds of children with autism on dozens of fun outings with their volunteer peer buddies. Many children enjoy the bus ride there as much as the field trip itself. Far too often, these field trips were either cancelled or interrupted due to mechanical issues with the bus. Now, thanks to The We Promise Foundation, this local camp has a beautiful, low-mileage, dependable bus with air conditioning.

FACT, the non-profit organization responsible for Camp Gonnawannagoagin’, is eternally grateful for the continuing support from The We Promise Foundation. The We Promise Foundation is known for always wanting to be involved with the causes they support, and they are fulfilled by witnessing the smiles they bring to faces. Karen Lane, the Executive Director, writes, “We look forward to partnering with you this upcoming year and spending time with you and your children.” She continues by requesting the opportunity to “come out and be a part of [the] organization and activities.”

The We Promise Foundation has made it their mission to help improve the lives of children who suffer from severe illnesses or tremendous hardships. Because of the bus funded by We Promise, Camp Gonnawannagoagin’ was able to increase the amount of children accepted into the camp per week, thus putting smiles on the faces of more children with autism in the Tidewater area.

FACT is honored to be one of the many who receive ongoing support from The We Promise Foundation

Vintage Car Rally Association (VCRA) supports families with autism by Fully funding family socials

VCRA check photoVintage Car Rally Association (VCRA) supports families with autism by Fully funding family socials

FACT is able to continue invaluable monthly socials, thanks to the VCRA

Virginia Beach, VA– Today, Families of Autistic Children in Tidewater (FACT) announces that its Family Socials will continue because of the generosity of the Vintage Car Rally Association (VCRA). Since individuals with autism typically suffer social repercussions, these children tend to miss out on events that most people take for granted: birthday parties, school dances, and recreational excursions with peers. The VCRA has acknowledged that these opportunities are invaluable for children with autism, and has granted FACT the funds needed to reinstate Family Socials. These events allow parents to network, siblings to model desired behaviors, and children with autism to enjoy themselves in the company of their peers. In 2014, VCRA granted funding for a 15 passenger van, 12 iPads, and 10 full camp scholarships for military families and those in financial need.

Rex Gardner, the Founder and Director of the VCRA, writes, “We are pleased we can be of some help to organizations like yours that struggle to make life better for those children with autism. It is our hope that our help will allow you to improve the caliber of your [organization], and increase the number of children you can assist.” Gardner continues, “it is our hope that you might, in the future, explore the issue of ‘children with autism entering adulthood’ and how to address it,” another FACT endeavor currently in the works.

Although FACT’s Family Socials were initially launched as a “hail Mary” attempt to fill one child’s void, they have since fulfilled the lives of hundreds affected by autism. With the money that VCRA has provided FACT, families have the opportunities to participate in a wide range of social, recreational, and athletic programs. In addition, FACT is now able to rent a convenient, clean, and safe recreational facility in order to host these events, which is a huge structural improvement from the previous venue.

If you would like more information about the VCRA, please visit: www.vintagecarrally.com

Kids stayed engaged at Winter Break Camp

Winter Break Camp was only 3 days, but they were packed full of activities. From holiday themed field trips to Hunt Club Farm’s Winter Wonderland and the Dicken’s Christmas Towne at Nauticus to special guests like Anna-Marie the Zumba instructor and the Salem High School cheerleading squad, the kids were engaged and having a blast.

Check out the fun.