Autism Delaware recently honored its volunteers at Dover Downs Hotel.

Autism Delaware recently honored its volunteers at Dover Downs Hotel.

Dover Downs Hotel and Casino and Dover Motorsports, Inc. were awarded the Autism Delaware Noel Perry Smith Award for Outstanding Employer. They were acknowledged for its hiring practices, employing people with autism spectrum disorders, and serving as positive role models for the employment community.

Grotto Pizza was named an Autism Delaware Outstanding Leader in the Community. Grotto Pizza was acknowledged for offering internships and paying jobs to adults with ASDs in 2012. In addition to also offering employment opportunities to POW&R participants, Grotto Pizza has donated food to the Autism Delaware Walk for Autism and annual holiday party and sponsored the Autism Delaware Drive for Autism.

Delaware State Senator Liane Sorenson (R-Hockessin) was also named an outstanding leader. Sorenson was instrumental in securing the passage of Senate Bill 22, which required health insurers to cover autism treatment. As a result of Sorenson’s effort, autism therapy benefits are now available to any child who has an ASD and regulated or state employee insurance.

The award for Outstanding Autism Delaware Volunteer was presented to six individuals and organizations. These volunteers provided help during social outings and fundraising events and provided it often throughout the year. Milton residents Jim and Koh Morrisey are long-time members of the Autism Delaware Blue Jean Ball Committee. As food coordinator, Jim manages the servers and fellow volunteers, regulates the distribution of food and ice, stocks the bars with beer and wine, and assists the setup of food vendors.

Milton florist Lisa Held volunteered her time and expertise on the Blue Jean Ball’s décor sub-committee for the last two years. Staying within Autism Delaware’s budget, Held created new decorations from readily available materials and asked her Hillside Flowers supervisor to donate rose bowls to enhance the setting.

For the past two years, Home Depot staff members volunteered to work at the children’s crafts table at both the Lewes and Wilmington sites of the Walk for Autism. The staff prepared by learning how to interact and communicate with children with ASDs.

For the past three years, Artisans’ Bank has granted Autism Delaware access to a banking facility so that Walk for Autism staff could reconcile donations. The bank employees also alphabetized checks and counted, wrapped, and deposited the funds.

Also supporting the Walk for Autism reconciliation process, Wilmington resident Barbara Butterworth has volunteered her time and knowledge of accounting since the first Autism Delaware Walk for Autism in 2007. Butterworth verifies each fundraising envelope, counts the funds, and assists with the bank deposits.

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