The Teen/Adult Life Skills Social Group

Our most recent  event focused on group dynamics.  Our participants  discussed a lunch menu, shopped for needed ingredients, and then as a group, prepared their lunches.  After lunch preparation, clean up was addressed followed by  an opportunity to share their favorite board games with each other.

The goal of this outing was to encourage our kids to have the confidence in a group to state their eating and entertainment preferences, discuss alternatives, and work together. They were provided  money for their lunches to discuss budget and handling.  Communication and Compromise were the focuses here both for Functional and Social experience. This event began at the Winter Gardens Elks club #2165  with a group trip to the closest Publix in Winter Garden at 535.  We are grateful that the Elks Club graciously offered their facilities for this outing.

  
This group is part of the Autism Gym at the Jim Beech recreation center and focuses on life skills and socialization. Your child must be high functioning, verbal, and able to learn socialization skills to participate. We are focusing on kids and young adults that will progress to the work field  and will possibly be on their own.  If you are a new member, contact Russell and Beth to set up an interview  to determine if the Teen/Social Group is suitable for your child.

Any questions feel free to email Russ and Beth Jones at RBFJONES@aol.com or stop by the gym on Tuesday evenings from 6:15-7:15

Pic 1 Pic 2

 

Pic #1  left to right:  Purchasing items to make lunch at the Elks lodge:  Matthew Lukaszewicz,  Michael Jones, Antonio Velazquez, Alec Nachtsheim, Abby Hindes,  Ean Hindes, Sasha Griffen
Pic #2  left to right: After lunch, clean up and then games.  Socialization, interacting, fun.



 

Golf Tournament 9 - 2013

The Autism Gym's 9th annual Golfing Fore Autism Charity Tournament was a great success! We raised over $3000!  We were blessed with great weather, wonderful volunteers and supporters!  We can’t thank everyone enough!  Thank you goes out to all the local businesses, the city of Ocoee, Jim Beech Recreation Center, Trophies Unlimited, Signwave, Tony's Liquor, Manheim, NSI Orlando, Yuengling Brewery, Chuck and Kris Zaffuto, Sosa and Corona Cigars, just to name a few. Thank you for your continued support!  The monies raised will go toward our upcoming prom and more family outings for the kids.
The Autism Gym  runs on Tuesday evenings from 6:15-7:15 at the Jim Beech Recreation center in Ocoee.  Our program is free and relies on program family support, grants, fundraisers, and donations. We have many events; family bowling nights, Holiday party, BBQ, Prom, Teen/ Social life skills group, and much more.  Any age, and all disabilities are welcome, and we encourage family members to attend.  For more information about our program, visit www.autismgym.org. or contact JoAnne Houwers @ autismgym@aol.com

1st place

1st place: Pic #297
Larry Makela
Sean ORielly
Tommy Lawson
Tom Cregger

2nd place

2nd Place: pic # 290
Brad Grabill
Bill Wagle
Gary Monson
Gary Young

3rd place

3rd Place:        
Alan Moss
Monty Townsend
Ed O Donnell
Bob Forster

volunteers winner raffle signs
cigars group group 2
group 3 raffle winner Joey

210: Volunteers:  Mariah Ammons, JoAnne Houwers, Jennifer Houwers, Tammy Kern, Nicole Tambini, Nikii Fuller
324:Damien Bennet wins the raffle
016 signs
143: Alan Moss and Bob  Forster  enjoy complementary cigars
193 Josh Wills grp
215 Damian Bennet grp
262 Mark Johnson representing the city of Ocoee
278 A happy raffle winner
295 my boy wins  Joseph Houwers claims his prize. The program was started when he was 15  he is now 28 and still enjoys the activities.

 

 


The Teen/Adult Life Skills Social Group - Second outing May 18th.

The Autism Gym’s new group, The Teen/Adult Life Skills Social Group, held its second outing on May 18th. This new part of the Autism Gym has been a huge success!  This has been made possible  by a grant from General Parts International Inc.


The group is geared toward higher functioning teens and adults with developmental disabilities. Its purpose is to be goal-oriented and provide entertainment while teaching life skills. This event featured the Fun Spot, The goal was to promote social skills, navigation, and purchasing and paying for their own meal.

Participants were provided cash and ordered their own food and handled their own money. Conversation about the afternoon’s activities was encouraged.
Due to its goal-oriented nature, the group is limited to individuals who are able to communicate and follow and learn from directions and guidance.
The Autism Gym runs on Tuesday evenings from 6:15-7:15 p.m. at the Jim Beech Recreation Center in Ocoee. For more information on the Teen/Adult

Life Skills Social Group, contact Russell and Beth Jones at  rbfjones@aol.com.
For more information about the Autism Gym, contact JoAnne Houwers at autismgym@aol.com.

pic #140  Michael Jones waits to "go"
pic # 172  Beth Jones hands out lunch money and directions.( LtoR) Nathan Hood, Joey Houwers, Alec Nachtsheim, Matthew  Lukaszewicz Garret Lanier, (Back row)
pic #180   Beth Jones helping kids order food for lunch
pic 190 Matthew picks out lunch while others decide
pic #217  Alec paying for his food
pic 222 Kids enjoying lunch and conversation
pic 228 smiles
pic 250 Joey and his mom and Nathan getting ready for the  slide

Michael nathan beth mathew
alec kids smiles nathan

 


WestOrangeTimes Article on our Teen/Adult Life Skills Social Group's First outing.

Click Here to view the article!

 

(p.s you will need Arcobat Reader to view.).


 

Autism Gym Prom for 2013


The Autism Gym's prom was a huge success!! Thanks to all that helped out! Patty Keener from jazzercise surprised everyone with a "Flash mob jazzercise"!! Dominic Roumeliotis and Jade Weaver were crowned king and queen. Thanks to all our wonderful volunteers, MLDavison Photography, Tammy Kern, Heath Wise, DJ, just to name a few. Special thanks to the wonderful Mayor Scott Vandergrift and the city of Ocoee. You are all hero's!  The Autism Gym runs on Tuesday evenings from 6:15-7:15 at the Jim Beech Recreation Center.  For more information, volunteering, or joining, contact JoAnne Houwers @ 407-234-7456

1.Prom queen, Jane Weaver gets crowned queen
2.Group dancing
3.Dominic Roumeliotis gets crowned king
4.“Flash mob, Jazzercise”: Group led by Patty Keener, instructor, Jazzercise
5. Group Dancing

prom queen group dance prom king
Jazzercise group dance 2  

the end

 


Teen/Adult Life Skills Social Group

 

The Autism Gym is proud to announce the first outing for its new group. "The Teen/Adult Life Skills Social Group" This will be geared towards higher functioning teens/adults with developmental disabilities. This is a goal oriented social group that will encompass learning life skills in an entertaining platform. Since it is a goal oriented group, this group will be limited to those individuals who are higher functioning. The participants must be able to communicate and follow/learn from directions/guidance.
Our first event was held on March 16th. Laser tag followed by a walk to the nearby McDonalds for dinner. Participants were provided cash and they independently ordered their own food and handled their own money. Conversation was encouraged, discussing the afternoons’ events.
The Autism Gym runs on Tuesday evenings from 6:15-7:15 at the Jim Beech Recreation Center in Ocoee. The program is free and relies on family support, grants, fundraiser's, and donations. We have many events; family bowling nights, Holiday party, BBQ, Prom just to name a few.

For more information on the Teen/Adult Life Skills Social Group, contact Russell and Beth Jones @ rbfjones@aol.com,

For more information about the Autism Gym, to become a member, or volunteer, contact JoAnne Houwers @ autismgym@aol.com. or visit, www.autismgym.org.
Picture info:
#1 Michael Jones ordering food, making change
#2 Michael Jones and Alec Nachtsheim filling drinks
#3 Discussing crossing a busy intersection Alec Nachtsheim, Russell Jones, Michael Jones
#4 Crossing the intersection: Russell Jones, Michael Jones (back) Alec Nachtsheim, (front)
Thanks,

change drinks
talking street

 

 


 

Autism Gym enjoys fireworks


The Autism Gym recently saw the Walt Disney World fireworks show on Bay Lake at the Contemporary Resort. The Autism Gym members (l-r) Jeff, Janet and Jeffery Lovett dressed like pirates and enjoyed the show.
More of this story...

 

 

 

Family Bowling Night


Family Bowling Night at Carter Family Bowl
Friday, July 20th from 6:30-8:30.
This event included 2 hours of unlimited bowling and shoe rental at no charge.  A great night for our families. The gym runs on Tuesday evenings from 6:15-7:15 and is open to all disabilties, ages and famiy members.  For more information, contact JoAnne Houwers at 407-234-7456

Pic #1 Karen and son John Oakman
Pic #2 Michael Jones gets a strike!
Pic #3  My son Joey Houwers and Dad  Joe Sr.
Pic #4  Joey Hi 5 with Dad
Pic # 5  Alec Nachtsheim aims for the strike!