Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

What will 2011 mean for you and the students in your life?  Will it be a year full of friends and inclusive opportunities in education?  Will you ride out the rest of the school year accepting a certain level of social and/or academic shortcomings in exchange for a relative peace in the classroom?  Would you be surprised to know that research indicates peer support improves both social and academic outcomes for both the student with special education needs and his/her mentor (Carter et al, 2008)?

Good Friend, Inc. is looking forward to all this year has to offer.  We might not have secured that Pepsi Refresh grant, but our middle school film Choosing To Be a Good Friend Forever will still be released this spring.  To date, all research supporting our programs has been anecdotal, but a Wisconsin university will soon undertake a study to prove the effectiveness of both our Peer Sensitivity Workshop and our staff in-service.  (If you want your Waukesha or Jefferson County school included, contact Chelsea Budde.)  And we're getting ready for our 3rd annual Hoa Aloha Autism Awareness Bowling Event on April 3 at New Berlin Bowl.  (Watch our website for online team registration beginning February 1.)

With all things being new again, maybe you're ready to jump in and support our autism awareness-acceptance-empathy™ mission on a whole new level.  If so, check out our opportunities posted at the Volunteer Center's website.  If you are looking to make another kind of contribution, perhaps through membership, check this out and click on the Membership page.

Here's to a year of healthy social relationships!  Let us know how Good Friend can support your school's goals in that regard.  Call Chelsea at 414-510-0385, or Denise at 262-391-1369.

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