AC Cares

R I S E to the Challenge

Parents of special need children and adults are faced with a unique set of challenges. Inaccessible accommodations, lack of support, and difficulty in finding community services are just some of the issues that can cause parents to feel isolated and alone.

AC Cares is a voluntary, non-profit organization that provides the special needs community with the tools to foster love, hope, strength and empowerment through education and support.  We strive to establish meaningful connections with those around us through understanding and compassion.

We invite you to connect with our community to learn about the various resources and services available to special need children, adults, families, and caregivers.

To meet the challenge through R I S E we believe we will help special need children and adults to be active and engaged in their community.

AC Cares

What are the needs targeted?




Self Management


Family/Caregiver Services



Knowing where to find services in your community to help your child receive the care they need is a challenge many parents face. AC Cares is committed to providing parents with information about the availability of community resources to address various avenues of support including, but not limited to, financial, insurance, medical, educational, and social support services. • Health Insurance • Care Coordination • Medical Resources • Physicians/ Specialists • Financial Planning • Home and Community Safety • School • Technology
When we receive a diagnosis that affects our child’s well being it is very difficult to process the information presented by the physician. We feel overwhelmed and confused and may not be able to completely understand the information about the diagnosis. Emotions take over and interfere with our ability to process new information. Knowledge is powerful. The ability to understand key concepts of a special needs diagnosis is essential in order to provide the resources needed to maximize your child’s physical, emotional, behavioral, social, and communication skills. AC Cares will assist with providing you with the information you need to best help your child. • General Information about Autism • Patterns of Behavior • Sensory Sensitivity • Impaired Speech and Expression • Anger and Frustration • Nutrition • Insomnia
Human interaction is dynamic. It allows us to connect to others and to nurture our soul. Surrounding ourselves with positive thoughts and being mindful in the moment enables us to grow as individuals and be the anchor our children need the most. Simply stated… people need people. AC Cares will connect you to other people to share information, thoughts, feelings, ideas, and coping strategies. Receiving support from others who truly understand is a gift we would love to share with you. • List support services/ community resources
Special need children and adults face their own individual challenges during different stages of life. AC Cares works to educate parents, families, and caregivers by providing information to include a broad range of topics that address physical, emotional, behavioral, communication, and social issues and concerns of caregivers. • Brushing Teeth • Addressing Feeding Issues • Haircutting Tips • Toilet Training • Managing Frustration • Home Safety
Sharon Thomas

Sharon Thomas

I am the mother of a son on the Autism Spectrum and an advocate for my son. When my child, Nicholas was a little over 2 years old I started to notice that he did not speak more so, did not communicate his needs. He was not pointing for objects, reaching to be held or making words. Because I was pursuing a master’s degree in speech therapy, I knew that he should have been doing all those things at that point. After speaking with the pediatrician about my concerns, the first thing we did was get Nicholas’ hearing checked to make sure that there was nothing wrong with his hearing. Once it was confirmed that his hearing was intact, the next step was to get an evaluation. This evaluation confirmed autism spectrum disorder. I had another evaluation done for Nicholas and the diagnosis was the same.

After getting two evaluation and that confirmed autism spectrum disorder, the realization hit me that I did not know what to do and where to go for help. The first step, however, was getting out of my own way and recognizing that the objective is to get my child the help he needs to thrive. As I began to research what Autism is and how to support my son, I attended workshop after workshop, I asked questions in each workshop, networked with other parents, and followed up on every lead. Discovering along the way that this process can be exhausting, isolating, daunting, discouraging at times but not hopeless. I learned that children with Autism are awesome! As I learned more, I shared the information that I found out with other caregivers and parents that I met who were going through the same thing. AC Cares came about out of the need in the special needs community for guidance, and support. Now as the ambassador to AC Cares my goal to be a support for families. As an autism mom this is truly a passion project. When I meet other parents of children with special needs, I ask the parent “what’s your child’s superpower?” Each child has a superpower, and our job is to support them as they navigate through learning what that supper power is and how to nurture it. Our team here at AC Cares is here to help you RISE to your super power!