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Ameren Illinois Donates $25,000 to Easterseals Central Illinois
Funds will support The Autism Collective’s Family Navigation Services

Peoria, IL (Dec. 10, 2020) – When faced with the diagnosis, or potential diagnosis, of Autism Spectrum Disorder, it can be overwhelming for families. In 2019 Easterseals Central Illinois and OSF HealthCare Children’s Hospital of Illinois came together to launch The Autism Collective, which helps end the isolation felt by those living with Autism. Thanks to a $25,000 grant from Ameren Illinois, families will be able to take advantage of The Autism Collective’s Family Navigation services.  

This unique program helps families and caregivers with a way to connect to services, like education, treatment, medical and community-based services for children with autism. In its first year alone, a single Autism Family Navigator served 150 families in Peoria, Tazewell, Woodford and McLean Counties. With the addition of a second navigator earlier this year, the reach of The Autism Collective has expanded across Central Illinois.

"The generous donation made by Ameren Illinois ensures that  The Autism Collective will be able to continue providing this vital service to families, " said Steve Thompson, President and CEO of Easterseals Central Illinois. "With an already stressed referral and diagnostic system, the addition of the family navigators has made a huge difference in our pursuit to help those faced with navigating through their options." 

The Autism Collective is housed in the Easterseals building, alongside the Autism Spectrum Disorder Clinic as well as other Autism services.  

Ameren Illinois has been a partner of the Easterseals Central Illinois for many years. Since 2013, they have contributed $270,000 to the ASD Clinic through the Ameren Cares program.

"With the Family Navigation services at the The Autism Collective they are able to extend a hand to help point these families to the resources they are searching for," said Andrea Parker, Natural Gas Regional Director, Ameren Illinois. "They are truly making a difference in the lives of families faced with autism and we are proud to support their efforts."

About Ameren Illinois

Ameren Illinois delivers energy to 1.2 million electric and 807,000 natural gas customers throughout central and southern Illinois. Our service territory covers more than 1,200 communities and 43,700 square miles and our mission is to power the quality of life. For more information, visit AmerenIllinois.com. Follow us on Twitter @AmerenIllinois and Facebook.

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Media contact:
Kelly Hendrickson