LAWYERS AUTISM AWARENESS FOUNDATION

Rating: 4.89 stars   9 reviews

Issues: Disabilities

Location: PO Box 260931 Tampa FL 33685 USA

Mission: To assist and empower the families of the Tampa Bay area who have a child on the Autism Spectrum. We provide the children who have Autism Spectrum Disorders with sensory friendly events, support their families with information on public and private educational resources and fund need-based grants to assist families with approved autism therapies.
Results: To date we have helped over 250 children with our Sensory Friendly Santa events and awarded almost $18,000 in Needs-Based grants for approved autism therapies.
Target demographics: children on the autism spectrum
Direct beneficiaries per year: Since 2011 we have awarded almost $20,000 in needs based grants for therapies and assisted 250 children with our Sensory Friendly Santa event
Geographic areas served: Greater Tampa Bay (including: Hillsborou, Pinellas, Pasco and Hernando Counties)
Programs: Sensory Friendly Santa event for the holidays and a needs based grants program to help families with approved autism therapies

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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

As parents of a teenage son with Asperger's, we know first hand the difficulties of raising a child with autism. Years of costly therapies and treatments in the hopes of having your child meet developmental milestones. The sacrifices the family and typical siblings have to make to their social activities to accommodate a child that can't stand being out in loud, bright places. And the stares from strangers when your child is on the floor having what appears to be nothing more than a bratty temper tantrum, when in fact they are having a full-blown sensory meltdown.
So when Luis Viera, a fellow attorney and dad of a son on the spectrum, asked us to partner with him in creating this organization, we did not hesitate. We have been very blessed with what our son has accomplished and welcomed the opportunity to help others in the community.

Our hope is to be able to add to our sensory friendly events in the future and continue to fundraise to help as many families as possible through our needs based grants program for therapies.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

expand the programs and raise more monies to help more people!!!

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

Our family have attended the lawyer's Santa event for the last 2 years. What a great event for our 3 girls. Our 2 younger daughters who are not on the spectrum are able to join in a holiday activity together with their sister with out the usual stress that goes along with what an outing like this would normally entail. Our girls can do crafts together and open a present to get "in the mood" and if their sister is a bit wound up before her time to see Santa, theres a nice quiet space to settle down before going in to see the big man. The volunteers and photographers are super patient and friendly. We can't wait to go again this year!
The Gonzalez Family

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

There are many large, national organizations that assist families with children on the autism spectrum. But I wanted to find a smaller, grass roots type, non profit to donate to that would directly assist the children and their families in our community. As a parent of a child with autism it was very important to me to find just the charity that spends the largest percentage of monies raised on the actual cause and not on "overhead." LAAF ticks all the boxes for me. They are offer a great annual event that helps many children and financial assistance for the parents to help pay for therapies.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

have more events

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

I would like to take this opportunity to share my experience with you concerning LAAF. Everyone in there organization are like Angel being sent to my family. We have a 12 year old autistic son. He is a very happy child . He plays baseball , soccer , but his love is surfing. If you met him you would be charmed by his great smile, his innocence . Jan has a 19 year old sister. He attends FACE - Florida Autistic Center of Excellence. We are very much involved in his development. I wish we can afford more therapy both speech and occupational. I wrote to LAAF , and I quickly got a response from an Angel of a women Sandy Santeiro. She was so excited to help us in obtaining help for Jan Sebastain. She directed me to start the process so that we can get Jan started with the sessions. I had to pay my evaluation which was not easy but I was so happy to get Jan awarded a grant to help with the therapy's. This pass weekend I was so overjoyed when I saw a check that was sent to me to reimbursed me for the evaluation . I have been very happy for all that LAAF has don for my son. I am a volunteer in Brandon (Coach) soccer for kids with disabilities . I also coach baseball with kids with special needs. People like Sandy Santeiro are very special . I could never repay her. But we all are very excited and appreciative of both the organization and Sandy for answering our prayers. Even though we live in crazy times there are still wonderful caring individuals like Sandy that dedicate their time to help other . Thank you for allowing me to share my story .

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

n/a

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

As both a volunteer and behavior analyst, I have had a very positive experience working with LAAF. I have volunteered at both of their sensory-friendly Santa events, and I am always impressed by their organization and attention to every detail that helps to make these events fun and successful for these children and their families. I have done a behavioral training at both events for the volunteers and everyone is so open to learning what they can do to help. They are very accommodating and do everything they can to make this a special, unique experience for the children, giving them lots of warmth, love, and support. As a clinician, I have clients who would not have had the access to ABA therapy they they did, were it not for these need-based grants, and that will benefit these children across their lifetime, giving them necessary skills to lead more happy, productive, and independent lives.

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

1 person found this review helpful

My daughter has autism and when I needed help to pay for her therapy they were there in a form of a grant. If it was not for LAAF my daughter would have missed out on about months of therapy

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

My son has Autism and our family has attended the Christmas party for the last 2 years. My son will not go to see Santa in a mall because it is to overwhelming. The last 2 years he has sat with Santa and we have been able to get a great picture. He also gets to make crafts with people who are so patient with him. The best part is that his little brother who does not have autism can also participate and loves going. We look forward to attending every year.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Make sure that more people knew about it.

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 4 stars  

My sons and I attended your senory friendly santa event last year. Everyone was very helpful. We are looking forward to attending this year as well , also to let more local families we know about the event.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

As a volunteer, I feel that working with LAAF has been a very rewarding and worthwhile experience. The organization is run by really genuine and nice people who are doing their best to contribute to the Tampa community. Additionally, they always make the volunteers feel appreciated. I would encourage anyone to give whatever support they can to this great cause!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful?