(PRUnderground) July 23rd, 2020
In celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the American with Disabilities Act (July 26, 2020), the Disability Opportunity Fund (DOF) has awarded over $700,000 in grants to improve the lives of Americans with disabilities. New York-based Nicky’s Gardens of Hope was awarded $10,000 to support the development of the next generation of support services for Autistic and Intellectually or Developmentally Disabled Adults in New York State’s historic Hudson Valley.
Adriana Piltz, the CEO of Nicky’s Gardens of Hope, immigrated from Czechoslovakia to the US when she was only a teenager. After learning English, she aggressively pursued the American Dream. Adriana became an American Citizen, a college graduate, a wife and mother, and eventually the President of a Wall Street Brokerage firm. In 2018 Adriana shifted her focus, giving up her Wall Street career to focus on her son Nicky. Nicky, her severely autistic son, was getting older and would soon be 21. And Adrian was beginning to acknowledge her own age, and that she would soon be unable to care for her son, who could neither feed himself nor even use the bathroom without help. When Nicky, or any IDD adult, turns 21 they face the “Cliff”, when all of their services are terminated and they must be re-enrolled in new services.
Adriana looked for a lifetime home for her son but found that many services lack sufficient funding and have waiting lists as long as 15 years. Lacking a good alternative, Adriana assembled a team and that team developed her ideas for a revolutionary new approach that would support both IDD adult and their families. By providing housing, care services, and employment… IDD adults and their families can live a dignified life. This is Adriana’s dream, and what Nicky’s Gardens of Hope will provide. Adriana reminds us, “Autism Speaks (an organization providing information on Autism) calculates that 50,000 Autistic kids become Autistic Adults every year. When you add Cerebral palsy, Down Syndrome, Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI), and all of the other IDD disorders that number doubles. There just aren’t enough homes for these kids, and every parent lays awake at night wondering, “What will happen when I die? Where will my child live? What happens when my child’s only voice dies with me?”
COVID-19 has made the need for Nicky’s Gardens all the more urgent. COVID devastated many nursing homes and care facilities. New safety regulations are likely to lead to the closing of many existing residences, making the transition over the Cliff even more difficult for families.
Adriana says that the grant from DOF, “… is like a gift in the skies!”, her signature phrase for all of the elements that have miraculously fallen into place to move her project forward. “We have begun our feasibility study and expect to settle on a location that we will purchase before the end of the year, and then we can begin providing services in 2021/ 2022 depending on conditions.”
If you are one of the 50,000 families that have an Autistic or IDD child who will face the Cliff this year, or are planning for the future and need to know more about your options at Nicky’s Gardens of Hope, contact Adriana and the Nicky’s Gardens of Hope team at email@example.com or by phone at (914) 440-4751.
About Nicky’s Gardens of Hope
Nicky’s Gardens of Hope is a welcoming, home community who’s environment is attuned to the living care of autistic and intellectually developmentally disabled adults and their families. It is dedicated to providing a revolutionary level of care for America’s rapidly growing and aging Autistic and IDD population. It integrates and interacts with the local community to bring dignity to everyday life for residents, family, friends, and visitors. It allows residents opportunities to participate in work therapy that can lead to employment opportunities. It provides a unique B corporation model as a channel for both donations and impact investment for social good and financial returns. It actively engages to incubate new business that creates additional revenue streams and make the garden bloom.Press Contact
Original Press Release.