Project HOPE Foundation was founded in 1997 by moms looking for services for their young sons with autism. As the rate of autism has expanded from 1 in 2500 to 1 in 59, our programs have also expanded into an innovative lifespan of autism services. We are broad in our scope, serving across ages (from two to young adults), across the spectrum of autism, and across programs (ABA therapy, classroom options, adult employment, social groups, life skills, community outreach, professional trainings). We are individualized in our approach, seeking to meet the unique needs of each specific person. Our programs benefit not only the child affected with autism but also the entire family, all of whom are forever changed by this diagnosis. Our therapy and adult services have been honored to be designated as United Way of the Piedmont’s programs of excellence. Our educational program, accredited through SCISA, received the Education Spirit Award through the Community Foundation of Greenville, Greenville Journal, and Town Magazine. Based on our use of funding, we received the Angel Award from the SC Secretary of State. No other South Carolina organization offers our range of services and support for the autism community.
In 1996, Lisa and Susan were moms of young sons who were newly diagnosed with autism. At the time, the rate of autism was 1 in 2,500. To get ABA therapy for their sons, they had to fly in consultants from New York and California, recruit their own therapists, provide their own training, coordinate their own programs, and find their own funding.
In an effort to fill the gap in services, they incorporated Project HOPE Foundation as a nonprofit organization. For them, “HOPE” was the perfect acronym for their goal for their sons: “Help Our Potential Emerge.”