We are joining this walk to raise awareness of autism in the Toledo area, and to raise money so families can pay for the necessary therapies needed to help our kids. Our son, Ryan, was diagnosed shortly after he turned 2 with mild autism. He made poor eye contact, spoke less than 5 words (on a good day), played alone, and was the worst eater I had ever seen. He ate 1 meal/day, and drank the supplemental drink, Pediasure. He started in intensive therapy which included: ABA, Speech, Feeding Therapy, OT, Play Project, Hippo (Horse Therapy), and recently Adaptive Swimming. He is currently doing 30 hours/week of therapy, not including the time we work with him or help him with his eating (which takes about 2-2 1/2 hours/day). In 3 years Ryan has come so far. He smiles and laughs all the time, plays with people, speaks much more including 3-4 word phrases, and eats 3 meals/ day. He has even ate chicken tenders from the kiddie menu at restaurants. This is the first time in 5 years we didn’t have to pack his food to go out to eat ( a major accomplishment for him). Early intervention has been critical in improving Ryan’s quality of life. Autism isn’t a terminal disease, but if not treated can be a life long developmental disability. Please support Ryan and all children with autism to give them the chance to live the best lives possible. Every child deserves a chance. Thank you, Claudine Bernardo (Ryan’s Mom)

Amount donated to Ryan’s Hope so far: $475

Walking on behalf of Ryan’s Hope:  Claudine Bernardo