It was 12 years ago when twin boys, Jackson and Ethan, came into our world. At two years and nine months, Ethan was diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. Suddenly, this beautiful world of opportunity and hope, turned into a fog of confusion and grief. Our feelings of isolation and fear were overwhelming. Will Ethan ever read? Will Ethan ever be potty trained, ride a bike or have real friends? What do we do now? Families Connected, a family networking program offered through The Arc Lane County, provides several areas of support for individuals and their families who experience an intellectual and/or developmental disability such as autism. Through parent training’s, family events, advocacy and more, Families Connected reduces those feelings of isolation and confusion. After all, “Loneliness is the only real disability” (David Pitonyak). Every day, The Arc and its programs continue to educate businesses and community leaders about I/DD and how we can make the community more welcoming and accessible for individuals who experience I/DD. Every individual in our community deserves to be recognized, respected and included. Thank you for the opportunity to ask for your support in helping The Arc and its life changing programs achieve this goal.