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Welcome to Putting the Pieces Together Support Group.

We are a support group open to all disabilities but educated in Autism and Fragile X. PTPT is more then a support group it is a family made up of parents, grandparents, sisters, brothers and friends of children on the spectrum. We meet every week to support, educate and share. We have speaker meetings, holiday celebrations, group trips, appropriate leagues for our children and more. You have nothing to loose and everything to gain by coming to meet us. Being a parent of a special needs child is not the end of the world, it’s just the beginning of a new journey. Let’s take that journey together and support each other each step of the way.

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A Little About Us and What We Offer

Putting the Pieces Together was established on July 7th 2005 by Tara Banuls and Deborah Wertalik the Mother and Grandmother of Tyler a child with autism and has tripled in size. Education is our best weapon to fight autism and the support group has educated hundreds of families by covering a wide range of topics and providing free speaker meetings and workshops.

In August of 2005 the Tara and Deborah started Special Angels Recreation which has doubled in size and continues to grow. We provide Tee Ball, Basketball, Bowling and Soccer. Our leagues differ from any other special needs leagues by having age appropriate teams, and all the bells and whistles of a typical league. Our leagues are open to any child with different abilities and living in any county.

We are advocates for autism in local and State government and make sure the districts understand the need for better education and therapy. We have created autism awareness so communities and law makers can see what our children are capable of. We will continue our plight to raise autism awareness.

To our merit we have organized annually our Breakfast with the Easter Bunny, Christmas Dinner with Santa our Pumpkin Picking Hayride along with other leisure activities to ensure socialization and normalization.

We have a Forum on our website which is available to anyone so they can share education or just talk to another person that has walked a mile in their shoes. We can now support and educate in other States and Countries through our forum.

We provide awareness, recreation, support, education workshops and more for the special needs community and professionals. Please keep in mind that in the State of NJ 1 in 50 children are diagnosed with autism and in the US the numbers are 1 in 150. This is a life long disease which requires more therapy and more parent education then is out there at this time. Unlike other childhood diseases children with autism will live longer then their caregivers so it is important to provide our children with life skills to get our children through their golden years. We are not looking for sympathy we are looking to increase our children’s chances of becoming a functioning part of society. We are the “baby boomers’ of autism and can’t afford to be penny wise and dollar foolish with our children’s future.

We provide a place to go when no one understands how we feel or what we are going through and to vent our frustrations and fears. We provide a place to make a difference in our children’s lives. Finally, we provide a family to comfort you, cheer you on, socialize with and celebrate your children’s accomplishments. Welcome to our family.

Mission

Our mission is to improve the lives of children and adults already affected by autism by providing support and scientifically-based training to parents, teachers, and other direct service providers and providing year round recreation and leisure activities. Putting the Pieces Together supports ongoing quality research on the causes of autism, its symptoms, prevention and a potential cure.

How we will accomplish this

Putting the Pieces Together will utilize experts in the field to train caregivers and professionals in the principles of teaching procedures based on research that have proven to be effective for teaching children with autism and by running programs both sports and leisure to promote socialization and normalization.

Vision

Putting the Pieces together has a vision of children with different abilities perceived and accepted as individuals who function and contribute to society on equal footing to individuals without different abilities. That vision includes children with mental, physical, academic, and emotional issues being able to learn next to and play with their typical peers in shared environments. Those environments are envisioned as universally accessible and rich in the resources that promote socialization and normalization. Wherever there are children, there is possibility. Whenever there is possibility, anything can happen. Putting the Pieces Together sees all children as unique, enthusiastic and capable. The vision has no limits.

Future endeavors include but are not limited to:

  • Working with the Senate and Congress to make or change laws to protect and enhance our children’s lives
  • Working to get camera’s on the school buses
  • Providing therapies and education for the children already diagnosed
  • Raising funds to do research on therapies and charting their success
  • Providing education in the arts and music for our children
  • Financing our own field and recreation facility
  • Financing safe group homes to ensure a safe haven for our children when their caregivers are gone
  • Providing more parent, teacher, and other direct service providers education
  • Raising funds to expand what we already have in place as our membership is growing and will continue to grow until a cure is found
  • Raising funds to provide more children with recreation to develop their social skills and fine and gross motor skills
  • Providing more autism awareness events to educate the community
  • Providing an OT room to provide therapy at little or no cost to families
  • Raising funds to build a special needs park for all special needs children to enjoy