Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation
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|Founded||January 31, 2000|
|Founder||Linda J. Walder|
|Legal status||501(c)(3) nonprofit organization|
|Headquarters||Edgewater, New Jersey, United States|
|Linda J. Walder|
|Mission||To develop, advocate for, and award grants to programs that create innovative ways for the diverse population of adults with ASD to participate in and contribute to community life.|
The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation (DJF) was the first not for profit organization in the United States to focus exclusively on adult autism. Established because of the vision of Linda J. Walder, the national all-volunteer-run 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization since 2002 has blazed trails for autistic adults to live the fullest lives possible. Employment, housing, lifelong family support, the arts, recreation, transportation, health and wellness, dating and social development are only a few of the many areas where DJF has led the way for adults with autism-spectrum disorder. The DJF mission is currently breaking new ground with the establishment of endowed funds at prestigious universities that will in perpetuity ensure that adults diagnosed with autism and their families benefit from the best research, programs and support systems, and The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation Endowed Funds will train future leaders and innovators in the field of adult autism. The guiding principle of The DJF Foundation is to honor the life of its namesake, Danny Fiddle by valuing the individuality of each person with autism-spectrum disorder so that each may achieve the best life possible as a matter of human rights.
DJF developed an informational brochure entitled, 'Autism, Epilepsy & Seizures: How To Recognize The Signs and Basic First Aid When You Do.' It contains general information about autism and epilepsy as well as about the co-condition of the two.
The foundation was instrumental in supporting New Jersey Sen. Robert Menendez’ re-introduction of The Helping HANDS for Autism Act of 2009, a three-part legislative package that includes a program to guide families seeking services and care, increased awareness among first responders, and housing for adults with ASD. New Jersey has the highest rate of autism in the United States.
In 2014, DJF established " The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation Adult Autism Research Fund" at Yale University Medical School to focus on research relating to adults living with autism. "The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation Transition and Adult Programs" was established at University of Miami's Center for Autism and Related Disabilities as a center for the development and dissemination of model programs and resources that serve adults on the autism spectrum.
In 2010, DJF developed a new level of program development and funding, known as The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation Signature Grant Programs, which awards grants to exemplary and replicable programs that address critical needs and gaps in services and supports for adults with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).