The Toys"R"Us, Inc. relationship with Autism Speaks represents the company's largest partnership with a special needs organization. The company's Toys"R"Us(r) and Babies"R"Us(r) locations across North America hold annual in-store fundraising campaigns in conjunction with Autism Awareness Month in April. Since the partnership began in 2007, Autism Speaks has received more than $16 million through money raised during the Toys"R"Us, Inc. in-store and online fundraising campaigns and through donations from the Toys"R"Us Children's Fund and Toys"R"Us, Inc. Also, Toys"R"Us, Inc. employees nationwide participate in the Walk Now for Autism Speaks program. As part of this overall philanthropic partnership, Toys"R"Us, Inc. created several resources to help parents and caregivers of children with autism. The company annually collaborates with Autism Speaks and the National Lekotek Center, a nonprofit organization dedicated to making play accessible for children with disabilities, to identify toys that can help little ones with autism develop language, creativity and social skills, among others, while playing alongside siblings and friends. The "Ten Toys That Speak To Autism," a special subset of the annual Toys"R"Us Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids, provides toy suggestions specifically for families and friends of children on the spectrum. And, since research shows that children with cognitive, emotional or social limitations, including those with autism, are more prone to accidental injuries, "Safe Play Tips" relevant for children with autism also are promoted during the campaign. Toys"R"Us, Inc. was honored by the PR News CSR Awards for the company's Autism Speaks fundraising initiatives.
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