My son Michael was diagnosed with Autism at 18 months old.  He is Globally Delayed and has severe Sensory Issues.  He is the sweetest little boy with a big heart and loves to cuddle while watching Doc McStuffin.  He enjoys going for walks and listening to music.  Michael also has Seizure disorder and CP.  These diagnosis were hard for my husband and  I to understand and finding affordable therapies was just as hard. 
We both spoke to lots of friends and wrote letters to organizations.  One afternoon a mutual friend of ours just happened to ask the right people.  Fight 4 Autism was able to help us. They gave us a beautiful donation to help our son go to a Sensory Gym.  At this gym Michael is able to open up and experience exercise in a less demanding atmosphere. 
Not only do the woman at Fight 4 Autism help you with monetary assistance they are also extremely supportive.  These beautiful woman are knowledgeable and help point you in the direction you need.   On many occasions they made me realize I am not alone.  They have become part of TEAM MICHAEL and our family.  
Thank You So Much!
The Feczer Family  

Mason England

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DeFilippis Family

We can't thank Fight 4 Autism enough for all that they have done to help our son Mason. Mason is 5 years old and has autism. It has certainly been a long journey since he was a diagnosed a little before age 2, and we have a long road ahead of us. We want to give Mason the opportunity to live the most successful life possible. He is an amazing little boy! However, the cost of raising a child with autism certainly is not cheap... Everything from therapies, to equipment, to supplements etc ... It really adds up!! My husband is working two jobs so that I can be home and around for our little boy as he needs me much right now (as does his brother of course!) and Fight 4 Autism has helped us to give Mason some wonderful things.... an iPad to help with communication, and $2000 to help us put in a fence around our yard. Mason is now able to run freely around the yard with all the other neighborhood kids and we have never seen him happier! Thank you, Fight 4 Autism, for helping Mason succeed and for making his life better. You are amazing and we are incredibly grateful for all that you have done for our boy.

- Jamie England

Baby Blue Eyes

Helping Tyler


Last summer my husband and I applied for aid from Fight 4 Autism. We were in desperate need of respite care.  Our son Christopher, 15 and our daughter Amanda, 13 are both on the Autism Spectrum. They need assistance/supervision with most daily activities such as showering, getting dressed, and brushing teeth. They have limited speech which often leads to frustration, anger, and tears (to all four of us) because they can't tell us what they need, want, or feel.  This frustration then turns into self-injurious behaviors.  For Amanda this involves hitting her head (with her hands or against any hard object around her), crying, kicking, and jumping. These meltdowns can last from anywhere from 2 minutes to an hour long! For Christopher, these outbursts can last anywhere from 1 to 30 minutes at a time and consists of biting his hand/arm, crying, and jumping. This leaves us physically and emotionally drained.

Family members used to help us care for our children, but as they got older and stronger it became more difficult for family to assist us. Even though we have a wonderful babysitter, we don't usually have the money to pay her.  Our family only has one income coming in because my husband is disabled with MS and depression. This leaves us with barely enough money to pay our monthly bills and services for our children, so an evening break from our children is often not an option. 

Last October we were ecstatic when we received an email stating that we will be rewarded $1200 of respite care for a year! This averages out to be about two evenings a month that we are able to get a much needed break from our children. Thank you Fight 4 Autism!!

- Stephen and Stephanie DeFilippis

Fight 4 Autism

Tyler was born in 1991, and had a sudden regression into autism at the age of 2 years, 11 months, following a well pediatric visit and a subsequent fever of 105.5. Following his regression, he lost verbal skills, motor & coordination skills, toileting skills, and Intellectual abilities. Tyler’s biological father voluntarily, left Tyler’s life, permanently, at this point.  Tyler’s behavior became significant. The crying, screaming, and the tantrums that lasted for hours, each day. Tyler and his Mom were living with Tyler’s grandparents, and Mom who provided loving support, and paid privately for therapies that were not covered by insurance. There was no diagnosis back in those days, and there were no other cases of autism to compare him to. The specialists were few and far in between. Tyler was dismissed by a Neurologist in 1995, due to his significant, severe behavioral tantrum, in the office.

Schools couldn’t manage him, and there simply were not many special needs programs, out of district at the time. There were no programs in district, either. Tyler was placed in a Regular Education classroom for years with severe intellectual disabilities. Mom sued the school district twice just to gain appropriate services. When Tyler was 14, he was sent to a Day school for special needs kids, but they couldn’t manage the behavior. Finally, at 16 years old, Tyler got into the right school. NJ realized that they couldn’t manage his educational needs, and sent him to the Wood’s School, in Langhorne, PA. This was Tyler’s first appropriate educational setting ever. It was also a Residential school. He lost very valuable years being shuffled to so many inappropriate school settings. He was evaluated by the Psychiatrist on staff who diagnosed him with autism, and mood disorder. Shining a new light on the diagnosis. He gained a diagnosis of Autism at 16 years old, finally.

The State of New Jersey started a program called “Return Home New Jersey”. It was an initiative to return those cases placed out of state and provide similar care for those kids, in the state, in Group homes. It all sounded good, until we actually came back to NJ in 2013. The care was not similar. Staffing of group homes uses entry level folks, often with significant communication barriers, our challenged kids simply cannot understand the language being utilized. Entry level staff are not trained in any behavioral modification techniques, positive reinforcement. They are instructed, and bound by Danielle’s law to call 911 for behavioral emergency. Within the first year of “Returning Home”, staff had sent him approx. 85 times to the ER, or mental hospital. Following a meeting to formally evict him from his provider, DDD did not find a home that could provide behavioral supports. Months went by, the provider unable to support his behavior appropriately, lead to the provider moving Tyler to a group home that housed extremely severe behavior clients. Mom had not consented to the move, and fought against it. Tyler was moved to the home without consent, and an incident with the new roommates stealing and destroying all of his possession’s, started upon move in. He was frightened and bullied by his rough roommates, and lack of staff control over any behavior. Tyler eloped in the middle of the night trying to get to his Mother’s house, where he did not have to fear for his life, while at home. His group home called the police, and evicted him on the spot. The state police took him to jail.

Sept 18, 2015, The Hunterdon County Jail system called Mom to inform that Tyler is safe, and being held on the medical unit, out of the general population due to his severe autism, and intellectual disabilities that were realized upon admission to the jail. Kudo’s to the Hunterdon County Jail system for recognizing autism, and going the extra mile to identify, and take special care of a special needs Autistic man. Clip of Tyler’s arraignment,

Tyler spent 19 days in jail because DDD, state of NJ did not have a place for Tyler to go that could manage his behavior, and there was a moratorium on Returning to out of state placements. Tyler was stuck in a system that was unable to care for him, and couldn’t go back to a system that could care for him. He was placed by DDD in an Emergency capacity temporary group home. There were no psychiatric day programs in place since returning. DDD was not forthcoming in putting the pieces in place for a successful community setting. 30 minutes of getting to the Temporary Emergency Group home, the staff had also called the police, and Tyler was taken by the police to the hospital. (He was out of jail for 1 hour). The hospital held him in the ER until a bed was available at Trinitas Hospital. The one and only psych hospital in the state that will take an intellectually impaired person with autism.

Fight4autism, Johana Burke, ESQ. reached out and offered to help Tyler, and things have gotten so much better with the legal support we needed. Since fight4autism took on his case, Tyler is in a day program with a psychiatric focus, run by trained psychologists and staff. He is in a group home that has mental health trained staff who work well supporting Tyler’s needs. Tyler still has visits to the ER, and significant behavior, we have come a long way since being in jail. Thanks to fight4autism, who continue to monitor the state’s provisions of support services.

Tyler enjoys playing basketball. He loves tattoos, and has 2 of them. He loves Tigers. Tyler loves his family, consisting of his Mom, step father, and 2 younger brothers. He loves animals and wants to volunteer in an animal shelter. He is trying to find the right girlfriend.

He is my hero. He has been since the day he was born. He has taught me patience, and to stand up and fight. I am a better person for having him in my life. Rita O’Grady, RN.

Fight 4 Autism Gives Back to the Community:

In year 2019 Fight4 Autism donated the following  :

       donated $1000 for Paterson Family for rent and iPad                                                       donated $1000 to Ridgewood Family for respite care 

       donated $1000 for Ridgewood Family for therapies                                                          donated $1000 to Ridgewood Family for medical expenses

       donated $1000 for Pompton Lakes Family for rent                                                             donated $500 for Paterson Family for PSE & G

       donated $750 for Oakland Family for respite care                                                               donated $1000 for Pompton Lakes Family for a fence

       donated $420 to Hoboken Fire Department for autism safety kits                            donated $700 for  Pompton Lakes Family for respite care

       donated $1500 for Hawthorne Family for a pool                                                                   donated $1500 for Hawthorne Family for a pool

       donated $500 for Hawthorne Family for respite care                                                         donated $600 for Hawthorne Family for a fence

       donated $1000 for Nutley Family for therapies                                                                      donated $1000 to Nutley Family for respite care

       donated $1000 for Nutley Family for after school care                                                      donated $1000 to Nutley Family for   medical expenses

       donated $1000 for Hawthorne Family for respite care                                                      donated $1000 to Hawthorne Family for Advocate

       donated $1000 for Hawthorne Family for therapies                                                           donated $1000 to Hawthorne Family for evaluations

       donated $1000 for Nutley Family for respite care                                                                donated $1000 to Elmwood Park  family for groceries 

       donated $700 for Hawthorne Family for sensory items                                                    donated $500 to Wannaque Family for headphones

       donated $500 for Rutherford Family for iPad                                                                          donated $500 for Lyndhurst Family for iPad        

       donated $500 for Saddle Brook Family for prescriptions                                                  donated $1000 for Garfield family for respite care      

       donated $1000 for Lyndhurst Family for respite care                                                         donated $500 for Hawthorne Family for sensory items  

       donated $2000 for Hawthorne Family for summer camp                                                 donated $2000 for Saddle Brook Family for therapies

       donated $1500 for Hawthorne Family for respite care                                                     donated $1300 for  Ridgewood  Family for therapies

       donated $650 for Pompton Lakes Family for a fence                                                         donated $1200 for Hawthorne Family for respite care

      donated $800 for Saddle Brook Family for respite care                                                   donated $400 for Clifton Family for a service dog

     donated $400 for Ridgefield Park Family for after school care                                      donated $300 for Rutherford Family for sensory items

     donated $1000 for Toms River Family for prescriptions 

In year 2018 Fight 4 Autism donated the following:

       donated $2000 for Ridgewood Family for respite care                                                      donated $1000 to Rutherford Family for Advocate                                                  

       donated $1500 for Hawthorne Family for respite care                                                      donated $1200 to Hawthorne Family for respite care

       donated $500 for IPad for Hopatcong Family                                                                           donated $2000 to Hawthorne Family for summer camp

       donated $3600 for Hawthorne School District Special Education program          donated $1500 to Oakland Family for medical expenses        

       donated $425 for Hawthorne Family for Advocate                                                              donated $2000 to Oakland Family for respite care

       donated $3000 for Runnemede Family for respite care                                                     donated $1500 to Ridgewood Family for therapies

       donated $1100 to Saddle Brook Family for after school care                                         donated $2000 to Saddle Brook Family for evaluations

       donated $600 to Hawthorne Family for music therapy                                                      donated $500 to Ridgefield Family for IPad

      donated $150 to Toms River Family for sensory items                                                        donated $250 to Perth Amboy Family for sensory items

      donated $150 to Hawthorne Family for sensory items                                                       donated $100 to Lyndhurst Family for medical expenses

      donated $1000 to Pompton Lakes Family for respite care                                                donated $1000 to Oakland Family for medical expenses

      donated $850 for IPad for Perth Amboy Family                                                                      donated $650 to Hawthorne Family for treadmill

      donated $650 to Elmwood Park Family for medical expenses                                        donated $465 to Elmwood Park Family for sensory sandbox

     donated $350 to Hawthorne  Family for clothing                                                                    donated $250 to Hawthorne Family for prescription expenses

     donated $1000 to Keansburg Family for a bed                                                                         donated $1000 to Saddle Brook Family for therapies

     donated $450 to Pompton Lakes Family for social skills therapies                              donated $500 to Paterson Family for respite care

In year 2017 Fight 4 Autism donated the following:

        donated $450 for Pompton Lakes family for respite care                                                          donated $2000 for Ridgewood family for respite care       

         donated $1000 for Ridgewood Family for after school therapies                                         donated $1250 for Oakland Family for evaluations

          donated $600 for Saddle Brook Family for after school therapies                                       donated $800 for Hawthorne Family for hippo therapy

          donated $2000 for Saddle Brook Family for respite care                                                          donated $200 for Pompton Lakes Family for treadmill                          

          donated $1000 for Hawthorne Family for respite care                                                              donated $750 for Hawthorne Family for music therapy

          donated $500 for IPad for Hopatcong Family                                                                                  donated $1500 for West New York Family for social skills camp

          donated $950 for Woodcliff Lake Family for after school therapies                                  donated $200 for Hawthorne Family for sensory therapy items

          donated $1000 for Wayne Family for respite care                                                                        donated $100 for Prospect Park Family for sensory therapy items

          donated $100 for  Toms River Family for sensory therapy items                                         donated $1000 for Hawthorne Family for respite care

          donated $100 for Hawthorne Special Needs Program-middle school                              donated $750 for Passaic Family for physical therapy

         donated $3900 for Hawthorne School District Special Education Program                  donated $1000 for Hawthorne Family for respite care

         donated $1000 for  Barnegat Family for respite care                                                                  donated $1000 for South Amboy Family for respite care

         donated$1000 for  Flemington Family for respite care                                                              donated $500 for IPad for Ridgefield Park Family

         donated $500 for IPad for Rutherford Family                                                                                  donated $700 for LapTop  & GPS for Franklinville Family

         donated $800 for Hopatcong Family for prescription expenses                                           donated $350 for Clifton Family for swimming lessons

         donated $500 for Laptop for Hawthorne Family                                                                            donated $1200 for Dunellen Family for evaluations

         donated $600 for Hawthorne Family for exercise bike & mini-trampoline                    donated $550 for Hawthorne Family for summer camp

         donated $900 for bunk beds for Hackensack Family                                                                   donated $840 for medical evaluations for Perth Amboy family

In year 2016 Fight 4 Autism donated the following:

          donated $500 for IPad -family in Ridgewood                                                                                  donated $2000  toward yard fencing for family in Ridgewood

          donated $1050  for respite care for family in Pompton Lakes                                               donated $500-Allendale Family for independent speech evaluation

          donated $500-Hawthorne Family to pay for respite care                                                        donated $500-Saddle Brook Family to pay for after school therapies

          donated $800-Hawthorne Family to pay for hippo therapy                                                   donated $500-Saddle Brook Family to pay for after school therapies

          donated $200-Pompton Lakes Family to pay for after school therapies                         donated $200-Hawthorne Family to pay for after school therapy

          donated $1350-Ridgewood Family to pay for respite care                                                     donated $2000-Hawthorne Special Ed program

          donated $750-Nutley Family to pay for sensory gym therapy                                              donated $750-Hawthorne Family to pay for music therapy

          donated $600-Teaneck Family to pay for respite care                                                               donated $750-Hopatcong Family for respite care 


In year 2015 Fight 4 Autism donated the following: 

          donated $500 for IPad - family in Lodi
          donated $900 for respite care for family in Pompton Lakes
          donated $500 for IPad - family in Nutley