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April is Autism Acceptance Month

Why Autism Acceptance?

Purposeful Wealth Strategies founder, Kevin Gardenier, is Autistic himself. He only discovered this as an adult, which in turn led to a lot of "ah-ha" moments for him. It was like a light bulb turning on, now he was able to make sense of things and have an explanation for certain behaviors and ways of thinking he had.

This story is not too unusual, as many adults (particularly many women) get diagnosed later in life. This may be, in part, due to previous lack of knowledge about Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). However, some get diagnosed very early on. It is a different journey for every person. Every individual has different challenges, behaviors, and strengths. Because traits and behaviors of Autism vary greatly from individual to individual, many who are not impacted by it don't understand that it can look very different. Nor do many realize that people with ASD can live independently, maintain romantic relationships, have careers, etc. Autistic individuals are capable of many things, and it's important to recognize this. Understanding this in our society can lead to greater involvement and acceptance of Autistic individuals in schools, jobs, leadership, etc.

Kevin feels that while awareness and acceptance of Autism is increasing, we still have a long way to go. These are just some of the reasons that Purposeful Wealth Strategies is running its second annual Autism Acceptance Campaign. We hope these will help shed light on issues surrounding Autism and increase understanding of the needs of the Autism community.  We look forward to you joining us!

Supporting the Autism Community

Last year for Autsim Acceptance Month, we used this time to not only inform and educate but also to fundraise for local non-profit, Autism Support of Kent County (ASK).  Through that effort we were able to help raise nearly $8,000 dollars and ASK was able to add a new program to their list of services that they provide to the Autism community here in West Michigan.  This year, ASK needs help with things like building maintenance, recruitment costs, and continued programming.  We'd love if we could raise $8,000 again!  

You can donate through the button below, or see the section on ASK's Walk for Autism.

ASK's Walk for Autism

Saturday, May 7th @ noon

Walk for a PURPOSE!

Join our team and walk with us at ASK's 2022 Walk for Autism, or donate through our team's fundraising page.  With ASK's annual Walk for Autism being in May, we'd like to utilize this event as the culminating event to end our Autism Acceptance campaign.  This year, we are looking forward to participating in the walk with our own team.  This would be a great time for you to see our team and catch up in person!  The walk is one mile around John Ball Park on May 7thRegistration is 12:00-1:30pm, team awards are at 1:30, and the walk starts immediately after, about 1:45.  You should plan on arriving during registration to sign in and pick up your T-shirt.  Walkers are asked to raise $25.  That gets you into the event, a Walk T-shirt, and a one-day pass to the zoo which can be used at anytime in the 2022 season.  

You can sign up for our team and donate here.


Interview with Purposeful Wealth Strategies founder, Kevin Gardenier

Kevin discovered that he was on the Autism spectrum fairly late in life.  He will discuss what that experience was like and how he's using it to help others.  Learn more about Kevin's story through this interview!

Autism Presentation - Tom Denczek

Tom is an LMSW who works with individuals who are Autistic.  He spoke with myself and a few others last year via Zoom to tell us more about how the brain works and the differences in processing and understanding for those who are Autistic and those who are not.

In the News

Kevin had a chance to take part in a local news story for Autism Acceptance month.  You can view the full article here.

Weekly Blogs

We will be posting weekly Autism topics on our blog and our Facebook page.

Week 1: From Awareness to Acceptance by Anthony Ianni (Re-share)

Week 2: ASK's Clubhouse Program Update w/ ASK Executive Director, Pam Liggett

Week 3: Book List by #ActuallyAutistic Authors

Week 4: Famous Autistics (Past & Present)

LPL Financial is not affiliated with Autism Support of Kent County (ASK), Pam Liggett, or Anthony Ianni 
o cash or cash equivalent donations can be accepted by independent financial advisors on behalf of the charity. LPL Financial is not responsible for any donations made.