West Virginia Autism Training Center ready for Saturday night fundraiser
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – The West Virginia Autism Training Center, located at Marshall University, will host a virtual fundraising event on Saturday night in hopes of raising money for a special cause.
The second annual virtual event, titled “Spectrum Stories: Building for the Future,” is scheduled from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and funds raised will help expand the college program for students with autism spectrum disorders at the Marshall University.
Dr Marc Ellison, executive director of the West Virginia Autism Training Center (WVATC), said the program supports 60 students per semester. He said they have the capacity to support double that number of autistic students but don’t have the space.
“For over thirty years, we have been providing services throughout the state. We do a lot of good work and I hope people will tune in to hear this good work. Support us too, we really appreciate and appreciate your support, ”said Ellison.
The WVATC has been located atop Old Main in Marshall since 1984, Ellison said, with just five offices in use. Ellison said estimates for a building renovation for the center are around $ 5 million. He hopes to raise money over several years.
The event features inspiring stories, unique auction items, and special guest appearances. Items include a Mike Tyson signed boxing glove, a signed Pete Rose baseball, a signed soccer ball for the Marshall National Men’s Championship soccer team, and Bristol Motor Speedway race tickets.
The Dr. Ruth Sullivan Autism Champion Award will be presented to Dr. Barbara Becker-Cottrill to honor her career dedicated to supporting people diagnosed with autism and their families. Becker-Cottrill is the former executive director of the center and Ellison said that over a period of 25 years she has transformed education and direct services for families with autism.
Those interested in attending the virtual event can register and / or donate at this link: https://e.givesmart.com/events/nL6/