TELL US ABOUT YOUR ORGANIZATION
NEXT for AUTISM is a not-for-profit that designs, launches and supports national programs for individuals with autism and their families. We believe that people with autism have the potential to live fulfilling and productive lives when supported by excellent services and connected to their communities. We’re always asking: What’s next for people on the autism spectrum?
WHAT INITIATIVES DO THE FUNDS YOU RAISED AT SWERVE SUPPORT?
The funds we’ve raised over the years have helped us build model programs for people with autism and their families. We’ve created a number of firsts in autism services, including schools, clinical centers, teacher training programs, employment training programs, and more.
We’re now focused on our newest program, NEXT for NEIGHBORS, a supported living program that will enable adults to live busy, engaged lives within our communities.
Our ride at SWERVE enabled us to raise funds that will go toward these important programs.
WHY DID YOU HOST A CHARITY RIDE AT SWERVE?
One of our NEXT Gen board members recommended SWERVE to us. She recently started riding at SWERVE and raved about the killer workout and team atmosphere. We took her advice, tried out a class and were instantly hooked. Our NEXT for AUTISM Power Pedal events are a great way for us to build community and meet new friends. Our vision for this type of community-building and the SWERVE style really complement one another.
TELL US ABOUT THE CHARITY RIDE
We just about sold out our ride, with 57 riders in attendance. In addition to purchasing their spot in the event, riders raised money on their own, competing to be the one who raised the most. This friendly competition helped engage an even wider community and helped us raise even more funds - plus got us warmed up for the competition at SWERVE.
Fitness classes bring a different energy to fundraising. There’s something special about pulling together a group of people who support a common cause. The passion is infectious and incredibly inspiring.
We even had a couple of individuals with autism at the SWERVE ride. We believe that exercise is an important part of life for people with autism – to stay fit and also to have activities where they can be a part of the community – so the SWERVE event was great in that respect as well.
The highlight of our ride was probably the start of class. Our event chair kicked things off with a short speech explaining the organization and the importance of NEXT’s role in the autism community.
She then spoke about our riders being parents, siblings, aunts, cousins, therapists, doctors, lawyers, friends, colleagues and friends of friends of people with autism; proving our belief that “Someone You Know Loves Someone with Autism.”
There was not a dry eye in the room including those of our amazing instructor, Dyan. It was incredibly moving and really set the tone for an outstanding class.
TO HOST YOUR OWN CHARITY RIDE: get in touch here