By: Maranda Gibson
The Autism Society of Middle Tennessee has experienced a lot of growth since the organization was founded. Amanda Peltz, ASMT Executive Director, spoke with AccuConference about the organization's humble beginnings, where they want to be, and how AccuConference is going to help them get there.
Did You Know?
The Autism Society of Middle Tennessee, a chapter of the Autism Society of America, began in the kitchen of the founder Laura Lloyd in 1996. In the beginning, the ASMT was comprised of a group of parents with children on the autism spectrum looking for support. As a new organization, The Autism Society of Middle Tennessee had no funding for the support group, and they found themselves taking calls in the kitchen. Over the years, they formed a relationship with the Tennessee Disability Coalition who offered them a small, closet-like space to work out of.
"It was the jump start we needed so we are very grateful to the Tennessee Disability Coalition for offering that to us," Amanda says. Over the years, the Autism Society of Middle Tennessee has expanded the staff, and she is the first Executive Director the organization has ever employed. Their mission is to "enrich the lives and experiences of individuals on the autism spectrum, their families, and their surrounding community through advocacy, education, and support."
For more information about the ASMT or to see their calendar of events, check out some of their useful pages below:
How does Autism Society of Middle Tennessee use AccuConference?
Like many of our non profit customers, the ASMT uses our conference call services to facilitate their board meetings. As a small grassroots organization, board members are heavily involved in the day to day operations of the organization, and they need a way to host meetings when people can't get to a physical location. AccuConference allows the board to stay at home when life and work are busy, especially around the holidays. ASMT was drawn to us by our Get Connected program, a discount rate we provide to help serve the nonprofit community. ASMT stays with AccuConference because we are simple to use, cost effective, and above all reliable. Amanda says, "When you call in, the line is actually working and it always has. What else do you need?"
The Autism Society of Middle Tennessee hopes to increase their staff over the next five years as they implement new programs and expand to more locations. Amanda hopes they will be able to reach more of the outlying counties and rural communities needing support. They are also planning to offer support services for adults as well as their continued support for families with autistic children. A new outreach program will allow the society to work in partnership with schools in the area to provide individualized education programs for children.
To help your local autism community, Amanda advocates finding your local chapter of the Autism Society of America. Local chapters are always looking for volunteers who are willing to support with their time and understanding. Financial assistance is always needed by any nonprofit organization.
A number of AccuConference employees' lives have been impacted by autism in some way and we are proud to be able to work with an organization that believes in providing support services to families.
If you would like to be featured in our monthly client profile series, please contact Maranda at 800.977.4607.
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