FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Grandparent Autism Network, an all-volunteer nonprofit organization, extends cost-free membership to grandparents nation-wide
Tustin, California, March 27, 2012 – The Grandparent Autism Network announced today that grandparents residing outside of Orange County,California may now apply for membership online on the GAN website, www.ganinfo,org. GAN was initially established in 2006 to serve members from the 34 cities that comprise Orange County, CA.
“GAN’s mission has changed from informing grandparents about autism,” stated Bonnie Gillman, Executive Director, “to promoting awareness and understanding of autism and enhancing the resources essential to community responsiveness.” GAN has sponsored events, programs and projects that can be replicated in other communities. Expanding outreach to grandparents will encourage the development of more support for families throughout the country.
A new e-Newsletter will be sent to all GAN members. It will focus on universal grandparent issues and what grandparents can do to improve the quality of life for families affected by autism.
Bonnie Gillman was named one of three national winners of the 2011 Lindt Unsung Heroes of Autism -This award honors outstanding efforts in bettering the lives of those affected by autism. She received a $5,000 award which she designated to GAN for additional website development.
In addition, Ms. Gillman has received the following recognition:
2009-2010 Regional Center of Orange County Volunteer Spotlight Award – This award is given to an individual with the demonstrated willingness and commitment to voluntarily act on behalf of people with developmental disabilities, and whose volunteer activities bring about a quality of life that is characterized by enhanced community acceptance, participation and personal self-sufficiency.
2010 California State Senator Louis Correa’s Women Making a Difference Award – This award honors distinguished women who have shown extraordinary dedication and who have made contributions to the Orange County community.
Ms. Gillman was appointed to the Orange County Autism Regional Task Force which advises the California Senate Select Committee on Autism and Related Disorders about current and future supports needed for the autism community.