Jake Vassallo is a sweet little boy who at 2 years old was diagnosed with moderate to severe autism. Jake’s parents, Chris and Claudia, reached out to us due to the limited assistance they receive for all of the services Jake needs. They constantly battle to keep his much needed services, such as speech therapy and occupational therapy. Therapies and treatments cost $40,000 to $60,000 per year and Chris and Claudia often pay out of pocket for these necessary services.
Surprisingly, the many therapies that children with autism require are not covered by health insurance. Chris and Claudia even had to get up and relocate to a different neighborhood on Long Island that offers the services Jake needs in that school district. The grant we offered to the Vassallo family was able to help Jake receive speech therapy because he is non-verbal, ABA therapy to teach him basic life skills, feeding therapy because Jake has a limited diet due to sensory issues, and sensory gym sessions to assist with his hypersensitivities to various textures and movement. We were so excited to be able to help this wonderful family and since we met the Vassallo family, Jake has said the word “mom” for the first time. How amazing! We wish you all the best!