AUTISM SOCIETY & GOODWILL’S PAPERWORKS STUDIO PARTNER TO CHANGE LIVES THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
November 15, 2011
By Autism Society
(Bethesda, MD) November 15, 2011 – Gabe, a man with autism, arrived at Paperworks Studio when he was 18. He brought no prior work experience, his eye contact was poor and he engaged in off-putting social behaviors like rocking motions and arm flapping. He would not accept supervision, nor was he accepting of his coworkers’ needs.
After six years with Paperworks Studio, Gabe, 24, has taken on a new position at a national resort chain. He blossomed into a team player, a productive and flexible worker and he gracefully accepts criticism. He was recently named Employee of the Year.
Inspired by success stories like Gabe’s, the Autism Society and the mission-based social enterprise company Paperworks Studio have teamed up this holiday season to advance awareness and raise funds for autism services and support. Now when customers buy a pack of unique high quality and handmade Paperworks Studio greeting cards, a portion of the proceeds will go to the Autism Society.
“When individuals with autism hold meaningful jobs at a fair wage, they are more likely to become independent and productive contributors to society, rather than depending on their communities for support,” said Jim Ball, chairman of the Autism Society national board of directors. “Paperworks Studio has known for years what employers are starting to realize: individuals with autism have great potential for success in the workplace. We are very excited to work with Paperworks Studio to advance our mutual missions of improving the lives of these individuals and their families.”
Paperworks Studio impacts more than 150 artists who create beautiful recycled holiday cards handmade with rose petals, wheelchair wheels and other unique materials. Artists also make other unique cards that are not sold anywhere else, including Lee Jeans recycled blue jean cards and cards made with wool sweaters, coffee grounds and other recycled materials.
“The Autism Society is a great partner. All of our artists have disabilities or disadvantages and make gorgeous one-of-a-kind cards with impeccable quality. Our cards show that when any person is put in the right situation—they can succeed,” said Margaret Alexander, Paperworks Studio director.
To know Paperworks Studio is to love Paperworks Studio.
“The recycled blue jean cards are exceptional,” said Lee Jeans manager of marketing communications, Nancy Miller.
“I want my customers to know that we care about people, because we do and it is what we’ve always stood for—helping others in need. These [Paperworks Studio] cards show that, and they are beautiful,” added Bill Ballagh of State Farm Insurance.
Paperworks Studio artist, Josh Crawford says, “I’ve been here three years and it is like a growing family. I love making cards and being a part of a team.” Artist Missy Marsh added, “People love our cards because they are made with love.”
Visit www.autism-society.org/paperworksstudio to order Paperworks Studio cards.
Media Contacts: Amanda Glensky, Autism Society, 301-657-0881 x
Brian Lewis, Paperworks Studio, 231 231-995-7757, BrianL@goodwillnmi.org
ABOUT THE AUTISM SOCIETY:
Founded in 1965, the Autism Society, the nation’s leading grassroots autism organization, exists to improve the lives of all affected by autism. We do this by increasing public awareness about the day-to-day issues faced by people on the spectrum, advocating for appropriate services for individuals across the lifespan, and providing the latest information regarding treatment, education and research. The Society maintains a strong nationwide network of chapters to provide support and grassroots advocacy at local, state and federal levels. Visit us online at www.autism-society.org.
Paperworks Studio is a program of Goodwill Industries of Northern Michigan. They make one-of-a-kind handmade greeting cards with recycled materials—including blue jeans, wool sweaters, coffee, flowers and alpaca. It has over 150 talented artists with disabilities and disadvantages who learn valuable life and work skills and build self-esteem while working at Paperworks Studio. They make cards for Fortune 500 companies and individuals around the country.
Autism is a complex neurodevelopmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and affects a person’s ability to communicate and interact with others. Autism is defined by a certain set of behaviors and is a “spectrum disorder” that affects individuals differently and to varying degrees. There is no known single cause for autism, but increased awareness and funding can help families today.
April 10, 2013
The Autism Society, the nation’s largest and oldest grassroots autism organization, has chosen Pittsburgh as the host city of its 44th annual conference on autism spectrum disorders.
April 5, 2013
Individuals with autism can attend the Autism Society National Conference and Exposition (in Pittsburgh) for FREE this year! Learn more: www.autism-society.org/conference.
April 3, 2013
Monarch Teaching Technologies, the makers of VizZle®, web-based educational software for visual learners with autism, will give one-year of free VizZle to every new (or renewing) Champion Member during April.
April 2, 2013
Read the Autism Society’s digital magazine about autism spectrum disorders!
April 2, 2013
Today, throughout the world, individuals will come together highlighting the needs and dreams of people living with autism.