First Place: Opening Up
October 2015
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Dylan Forges a Path Toward Independence

We're encouraged with the early results of the First Place Transition Academy, operated by the Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center. Check out Dylan’s progress!

Capital Campaign & Development Progress

First Place® is making significant progress thanks to our supportive community, collaborators and champions.

$20M Capital Campaign Advancing:
  • Half of the campaign will comprise a conventional loan and the benefit from a New Market Tax Credit, which will net about $3.5 million in equity.
  • The other $10 million is being raised through philanthropy. We’re halfway there!
Design & Development Plans Underway:
  • Hosted our second national design charrette and completed architectural plans.
  • Groundbreaking is projected for first quarter 2016; opening, fall 2017, pending the successful completion of the capital campaign.
Transition Academy Producing Results:
  • Enrolled eight of our 12 students in the beta site program.
  • The Academy program is fully operational.
  • All students are enrolled in the First Place/SARRC life and vocational skills curriculum now offered at Gateway Community College; most have paid internships and all are volunteering.
First Place Reaching Out:
  • Refined fellowship program with ASU, Teach For America and more.
  • Hosted four out-of-state groups in Phoenix eager to learn about First Place and explore replication opportunities.
Thank you for what you’re making possible!

Apply Now for First Place
Transition Academy

Only a few spots remain in the First Place Transition Academy. The academy provides a highly structured and supportive environment for building independent living and career-readiness skills. Learn about student criteria.

Congressional Representatives Tour Transition Academy Beta Site

We enjoyed discussing residential housing public policy issues with representatives from Arizona’s congressional delegation. Thanks to staff from the following offices for attending: Sens. Flake and McCain, U.S. Reps. Gallego, Kirkpatrick, Salmon and Sinema. Together, we will open more doors to independence.

How Can We Help Adults with Autism Live Independently?

The Arizona Republic recently featured our pioneering approach to transforming how we approach housing for adults with autism and other special abilities. “Like” the article on Facebook!
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