Local Outreach for Autism

By: Erika Tallan
By: Erika Tallan

More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with AIDS, diabetes and cancer combined. That's according to the Autism Speaks Organization. The organization says autism gets the least funding of those diseases.

Three companies are all working for one cause: to raise money for autism.

Texas Roadhouse in Lincoln served up a free BBQ lunch Thursday -- asking for free will donations.

"That's a really big piece of Texas Roadhouse. We are rely big in the community partnership in our local communities. That's really where we spend our advertising money. We help out with autism walks, cancer walks, non-profit organizations, churches and schools," said Curt Magnus, manager at Texas Roadhouse.

If you missed the BBQ, you can still dine at the restaurant and donate for the cause. Or the restaurant will be selling bags of its peanuts at the Autism Speaks Walk Now for Autism event Sunday at Pioneers Park.

Head to Subway and you'll get a free cookie if you donate $1 or more to the Autism Speaks Organization. Plus you'll get your name showcased on a paper puzzle piece!

"A lot of people have been donating loose change. Every little bit helps," said Gina Catinella, Business Consultant for Subway.

All of the Subway locations in Lincoln and a few in Kearney and Imperial are taking part in the Puzzle Piece Campaign that lasts through October 8th.

Alpha Xi Delta is doing it's part. The university of Nebraska Lincoln sorority helps set up before and clean up after the walk. It also participates in the walk and raises money.

"Autism is really important to us because its a growing disorder and it affects a lot of kids and we definitely want to help them find a cure for autism," said Jenna Lenihan.

Autism became the sorority's national philanthropy 2 years ago.

All proceeds raised by these organizations goes straight to the Autism Speaks Organization.

Besides helping out at the Autism Speaks Walk Now for Autism walk tomorrow, Alpha Xi Delta is holding a separate event to raise money for autism.
It's Karaoke Camp-out event is Thursday, November 4th at the sorority house located at 1619 R Street.
Doors are open to the public from 9 to 10 that night.
Enjoy hot dogs, chips and s'mores and karaoke for $5.

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