One in 68 Children has Autism

QSAC's blog – 2009 – December » 2009 » December

A letter from a QSAC parent

December 10, 2009 5:10 pm Published by

Dear friends,
It had been three years since we were able to recently go on an outing as a family.
You see, my daughter Gina has autism.
Our family never had a “normal” day, only days filled with terrible tantrums and meltdowns. That meant no car ride and no outing. The stress was horrible on the entire family. My two older children were reaching the point of disliking their sister because of the four walls we were confined to.
Then we joined QSAC.
Structure and visual supports helped decrease Gina’s frequent meltdowns. Learning how to communicate what she wanted without resorting to problem behavior was the first step in her continued progress. I joined the weekly parent training group. My two elder children signed up for the sibling group. It is an extraordinary opportunity for them to express themselves in a non-threatening and confidential environment, to meet other siblings with identical issues, and to understand why their sister needs – and gets – so much attention. My children fell in love with the group after just one session and made many new friends. I also signed up for home parent training to target specific issues at home. The knowledge I have gained since has gotten me out of some serious situations with Gina. I have learned to deal with her meltdowns and I have learned to respond in a calm and poised way.
We are now able to go and sit in a restaurant without a tantrum or a fight. We can go for car rides. We can go to the store. This is a new beginning for our family.
If it was not for the family approach QSAC offers, Gina would not be where she is today and neither would I. She has come so far that I am still amazed at her rapid progression. My little girl has been transformed and so has my family.
I don’t know what the future holds for Gina. What I know for sure is the difference QSAC makes in the lives of hundreds of families with a child with autism. You may not personally need QSAC, but QSAC needs you.
Gina’s future – and the future of many others – depend on you.
So on behalf of the many people whose lives are changed by the programs you make possible, I thank you for your steadfast support and the motivation it gives us to continue.
Please be as generous as you can. Thank you.
Suzanne P.
QSAC parent
PS from QSAC: Please take a minute and send a year-end gift today.
Not only are we experiencing budget cuts, we are also anticipating a surge in requests for services. Two new studies published this fall have changed the prevalence rate of autism from one in 150 to one in 100 American children. Your generous gift is critical. Please do all that you can to help.
Please donate on-line by clicking the button below:
Potential contributors may obtain a copy of QSAC’s financial report from the Attorney General by writing to the Office of the Attorney General, Department of Law, Charities Bureau, 120 Broadway, New York, NY 10271, or directly to QSAC Inc., 253 West 35th Street – 16th Fl., New York, NY 10001.

A Happy Thanksgiving for QSAC’s Neediest Families

December 3, 2009 5:37 pm Published by

The Astoria-LIC Kiwanis Club and local banks step in

Under the leadership of Will Dionisio, Turkey Drive Chair, the Astoria-LIC Kiwanis Club organized its annual Turkey Drive to benefit QSAC’s neediest families. With the help of St. Andrew’s Church in Flushing, fifty-four turkeys were delivered to Queens, Brooklyn, The Bronx and Manhattan, along with an assortment of canned and dried foods collected simultaneously by Astoria Federal Saving Bank on 29th Street and 30th Avenue and at 32nd Street and 30th Avenue; the Flushing Bank at 32nd and 30th Avenue; Queens County Saving Bank on Steinway Street; and Sovereign Bank on Broadway and 36th Street. The Astoria-LIC Kiwanis Club is also currently organizing a toy drive for our neediest families.

Pictured here are Paul Vallone, Kiwanis past president, Paul Halvatzis, Kiwanis past president and QSAC board member, Will Dionisio, Turkey Drive Chair, with QSAC staff members: Cory Polshansky, Deputy Executive Director, Timothy Burke, Director of Administration, Kathy Smith, Director of Service Coordination, Danièle Favre-Panayotatos, Director of Fundraising, Kyndell Johnson, Administration Coordinator, and staff members of the MSC department.

Unique Holiday Gift of Uplifting Music 90% to benefit QSAC

December 1, 2009 3:14 pm Published by

SingSOS/Songs of the Spectrum is an autism awareness project that combines the power of music and the appeal of celebrity musicians. An album of original songs about autism has being released in time for the holidays, featuring performances by artists like Jackson Browne, Dar Williams, Marshall Crenshaw and other top names. The music is packaged with a small bookshelf’s worth of handpicked autism resources, including excerpts from books by leaders in the field. The songs convey what’s so hard to convey in words alone: the experience of a family facing this baffling disorder, its unexpected joys as well as heartbreaks. You can support QSAC by buying the album at and selecting us on the “Choose a charity” page. We will receive 90 percent of proceeds from your purchase/donation. Give the gift of understanding this holiday season, while supporting a cause and organization dear to you. For more information to preview the songs or to purchase, go to Don’t forget to choose QSAC as your charity.

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QSAC is a New York City and Long Island based nonprofit that supports children and adults with autism, together with their families, in achieving greater independence, realizing their future potential, and contributing to their communities in a meaningful way by offering person-centered services.

QSAC pursues this mission through direct services that provide a supportive and individualized setting for children and adults with autism to improve their communication, socialization, academic, and functional skills.