Supporting Children with Autism, One Event at a Time

Thursday, October 25, 2012 View Comments Autism Speaks

This post is by David Stynchula, Founder of The Stynchula Family Foundation.

My name is David Stynchula, Founder of The Stynchula Family Foundation. For the past 13 years my family and I have found what you may consider a “calling” in life. Personally, I was exposed to a family who, when their son turned 18 months old, woke up a different child.  Shortly after this event, he was diagnosed with autism. My wife and I, being one of the lucky ones with two healthy children, were compelled to find a way to help this family in some way.  Little did I know how something like this would find a life of its own! What started out as one fundraising event is now six different “FUND” and “FUN” Raisers. We have befriended so many families with autistic children; needless to say we are a blessed family. 

Our “FUND” raisers include a 10-70 mile Bicycle Run, pick your poison for distance, a 5K Run, and our premier event, the Outing for Autism golf event with a live and silent auction.  Just added is a group of ceramic students at the local high school making ceramic mugs and selling them at the Holiday Parade in Grove City, Ohio.  Last year they raised $1,600 for our foundation.  We have found people are looking for good foundations to get involved with. Many found ours and everyone associated with the Stynchula Family Foundation is a benefactor in some way.  

The “FUN” Raisers we have, or are part of, include the Superkids Soapbox Derby Race, the Buddy Camp, a Holiday Party complete with Santa, and our Football/Cheerleading Camp, which raises the most interest.  Imagine, if you can, 80-120 children with an Autism Spectrum Disorders on a football field with a typical peer or parent helping them do running, kicking, and passing drills as well as sprints and crab races; and young ladies doing cheers and tumbles for a halftime show.  The coaches are past college and NFL football players and cheerleaders taking time at no cost to coach these children.  After the event, it is hard to figure out who was affected more, the coaches or the children. 

The most gratifying thing that happens is to have one or more of the children come up to a coach, parent or even myself and give one of the best gifts anyone can receive—a big HUG!!  Nuff said. 

For more information about The Stynchula Family Foundation:

Contact Dave Stynchula at (614) 875-7384.

Visit our website at www.StynchulaFamilyFoundation.org

View The Columbus Dispatch article about the camp >

View NBC4 video of the football camp >