About Us

"We [Chelsea and Denise] co-founded Good Friend in 2007 because we saw a need we knew we could fill. We are mothers of children on the spectrum, now teens on the spectrum. We watched our sons struggle to make friends with their classmates, and from other parents of children on the spectrum, we learned that our sons were not unique in their struggle.

"As adults without autism, we struggle to understand autism ourselves. We knew it had to be difficult for classmates to understand autism. But more importantly, we knew it was difficult for classmates to see beyond the differences to find the similarities.
 


"So sure, we could tell you about all sorts of numbers we've tallied over the last decade of conducting autism awareness, acceptance, empathy training for staff and students in elementary and middle schools. We could tell you we visited over a hundred schools in Wisconsin and shared our message with more than 40,000 people, 83% of whom are students. We could tell you about the university research study on our elementary school services' effectiveness which involved nearly 1,200 participants in a dozen schools.

"But you know what we'd rather tell you about? That time Jack went from zero play dates in 2nd grade to four. Or when Justus got his first birthday party invitation. Or when Camryn was brought onto the stage of her classmate's year-end skit in a joyful dance. Or when David brought a job application to his friend he met ten years ago because we came to his class to talk about the strengths of his classmate with autism.

"We are ready to partner with you, to lay a healthy social emotional foundation on which a culture of acceptance can flourish."

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