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RachaelsMom

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NONPAREIL INSTITUTE
September 9, 2013

We are now in the second year of our daughter's association with nonPareil Institute, where she is a student and also a part time employee. In that first year, we were filled with gratitude as she quickly melded into a greater whole of individuals "on the Autism spectrum". As I volunteered I observed a culture in which new individuals could literally walk into the Social Room, observe a video game being played for a few minutes, and relax, cross-legged in the floor to exchange knowing observations about the game maker's strength's and weaknesses. Repeatedly, daily, I was able to observe persons who probably were, in other environments, ostracized for their peculiar attention to detail and focus on a single subject. These individuals needed to be able to express their opinions on those important subjects, and their peers listened, every one of them, as they enthusiastically discussed the minutia that supported their theories and beliefs. They could take whatever time was needed to let the speaker converse, and then give pertinent answers. Less self-assured individuals I observed felt comfortable enough to express frustrations with operating various games, and a few of their peers would flank them, making encouraging remarks, offering personal experiences, and assuring support. I volunteer random days, see different individuals, but this is the common experience at nonPareil within the "down time" of the Social Room.
As I have spoken to and become familiar with students at nP, I have learned how life-changing it was for most of them. Literally lives have changed from despair to hope and confidence. Emphasis by the carefully attentive staff not only on the worth of individuals, but also on the value of the collective whole of individuals attending and/or working at nP keeps focus on the motto, "All for one and one for all!" No one is expected to make it alone, and no one is left to his or her own devices.
So, it is like watching ducks getting into water. They belong. It was made for them.....

Ways to make it better...

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

Find someone who has the resources to set up a perpetuating fund in order for a nP facility to be set up in every city. Much as Carnagie saw the need for every city to have a library, in an age when Autism affects one in 50 individuals, every city needs to have a nonPareil center. Adults with autism should be able to train, work, and live in facilities designed for their needs. nonPareil needs permanent, perpetual funding.

More feedback

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?

Life-changing

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

MY ROLE:
Volunteer

NONPAREIL INSTITUTE
August 29, 2012

After high school, our daughter who is affected by Asperger's on the Autism Spectrum, had an almost free fall with respect to schooling and employment. Although we sought help from the State employment agency, overall she was set up with a series of jobs far beneath her capabilities, and inappropriate for her bright mind. Finally we were fortunate enough to find nonPareil Institute. Since her enrollment in the training program, our daughter has learned to use Hammer software to build maps for computer game and apps, and expects to go on for further training in various aspects of video game and computer application construction. The environment is a near perfect lab for adults affected by ASD including personal training, Kabals with the production team, and social opportunities that foster respectful interaction with others on the ASD spectrum as well as with Neurotypical individuals. Instructors may include graduates of the program who are on the ASD spectrum, and computer software engineers from the SMU graduate program or from industry backgrounds. Our experience at nonPareil exceeds our hopes and expectations. We are committed to ensuring our daughter and others on the ASD spectrum are able to train and work there..

More feedback

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?

Life-changing

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?

2012

MY ROLE:
Volunteer

Review from Guidestar