Finishing Strong- What Can We Achieve Together?
As a friend and supporter of Arkansas Support Network, you know that our mission is to recognize and support every person’s right to be included in the life of the community. However, you may not know the impact your support has on your neighbors and community members who rely on ASN’s assistance to live active, meaningful lives in communities all across Arkansas, while experiencing significant disabilities and being overlooked as valuable, contributing citizens.
One amazing person who has benefited from ASN’s support is John. As a man with autism who is non-verbal and relies on his own specially modified form of facilitated communication, John has experienced being overlooked and underestimated most of his life. As a young person, John was believed to have significant intellectual limitations until he taught his high school aids how to support him to communicate. In 2002, John journeyed through the process of purchasing a quaint little home in downtown Bentonville. He observed as the professionals he partnered with to purchase his home assumed he was “stupid” because he didn’t talk, despite him securing property in one of the country’s fastest growing regions. This year, John negotiated an amazing deal to sell his home at four times its value while securing a lifetime, rent-free lease to remain in the home he loves so much. Everyone who knows him was reminded, once again, that John is an amazing person, living an amazing life. Here, at ASN, we are fortunate to be a part of it.
Since John began receiving ASN services in 1989, he has benefited from many donor-funded supports provided through ASN. During the time his fixed monthly income wasn’t enough to cover the costs of home ownership, ASN was able to provide additional financial resources through custodial accounts provided by our Community Living Services program to ensure his needs were met. If holiday seasons added additional costs to a tight budget, ASN’s Holiday Giving program was there to ensure joyful holidays. As John sought to participate in fun and welcoming community events, ASN’s Recreation Program offered a wide variety of inclusive and welcoming activities to participate in.
Just like hundreds of other individuals who receive funding for specific services at ASN, the supports John receives has always stretched beyond available funding to ensure he is able to live the life he desires in the community and home of his choosing.
Today, we invite you to make an end-of-year contribution to Arkansas Support Network. You can make a one-time donation or schedule reoccurring gifts at www.supports.org/donate. With your gift, we will be able to continue providing valuable services that are not possible without generous donor contributions!