On Sunday, April 27, Aspiritech will host an Open House in our new office space located at 427 Sheridan Road, Highwood, Illinois, 60040. Held from 2 – 5 p.m., the Open House and ribbon cutting ceremony will bring together dignitaries, community members, board members, advisers, and employees and their families in celebration of Aspiritech’s new home. Aspiritech was one of the first non-profits in the country to create an effective employment model for adults with Asperger’s syndrome and autism. We continue to lead this sector, leveraging the unique talents and abilities of individuals on the autism spectrum to provide top-notch software testing services.
After six years, Aspiritech had indisputably outgrown our former space. With an employee wait list that increases every year, the need for a larger location became paramount in 2013. The new Highwood office is tailored to meet the specific needs of individuals on the autism spectrum, many of whom struggle with sensory difficulties and social discomfort. Planned sensory amenities include balance ball chairs, desk exercycles, and weighted vests. The layout of Aspiritech’s new home also encourages social interaction in communal spaces.
Many of Aspiritech’s employees have struggled to find meaningful employment elsewhere; studies show that only 15% of adults with autism are gainfully employed. Creating a positive and comfortable workplace is a key aspect of Aspiritech’s model. “At Aspiritech, I have been able to work in an environment where I feel included, capable, and successful,” one employee says. “No more eating lunch alone or being judged by coworkers and bosses at a job where I can’t get help when I need it.”
In the U.S., autism affects approximately one in every 88 children. As these children age into adulthood, they are no longer eligible for school-sponsored support services or other forms of assistance. Nearly 40% of young adults with autism in the U.S. receive no services whatsoever after high school graduation. “This is an unacceptable situation,” says Brenda Weitzberg, Aspiritech’s executive director. “We are wasting the incredible talents of a growing sector of our population, a group that has important technical skills to offer the business community.”
Aspiritech invites the Chicagoland community to learn more about the organization and celebrate its new home during the Open House and ribbon cutting ceremony on April 27. The event is a great opportunity to show your support for a local non-profit that is making a national impact.