Patrick's Story

Patrick’s life changed, thanks to you!

Patrick400.jpgWhen Patrick moved to Brevard with his family seven years ago, he was almost entirely non-verbal and had trouble making eye contact with even his peers. Patrick is on the autism spectrum and is challenged by significant developmental disabilities.

Patrick began attending programs at Brevard Achievement Center where he was exposed to life skills training, computer classes, empowerment programs and performing arts. His teachers and mentors saw him improve so dramatically that they advocated for him to begin training for possible employment opportunities. During his vocational training, Patrick and his father joined BAC staff in Tallahassee to advocate for himself and his peers with our legislators.

The first time Patrick approached a state representative, looked him in the eye, shook his hand and told him his name in a clear, confident voice, his father became so emotionally overwhelmed he had to step from the room. He told BAC staff that he never would have thought Patrick capable of this level of interaction and professionalism. BAC had truly helped his son reach levels well beyond what he thought possible.
This year, Patrick achieved a milestone that most of us take for granted but that his family never believed possible for him - he accepted a job in the community. Patrick works for a local law firm, providing data input of technical legal findings into specialized software. He eats lunch with his co co-workers who joke with him; he asks others about their day; he holds eye contact when someone is talking with him. He is empowered and successful at work!