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The 7th Annual KNOWAutism “As I Am” Luncheon

Thursday, April 8, 2021 at The Junior League of Houston @ 11:30am

We are proud to introduce the inaugural Sippi and Ajay Khurana Houston Heroes Awards honoring community leaders who are committed to our mission: no child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) should be left untreated due to lack of information, awareness or financial resources. We sincerely hope you will join us in acknowledging these leaders who have contributed to and amplified Houston’s standing as the most generous city in the world!

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Dear Friends of KNOWAutism,

Over the past six years, KNOWAutism Foundation has raised more than $1.8 million for programs and scholarships granted to hundreds of children and their families impacted by autism. Like so much in our lives today, our annual gala event is requiring us to be resilient, and has become the “As I Am Luncheon” to be held on Thursday, April 8 at the Junior League of Houston beginning at 11:30. 

We, the luncheon co-chairs, Ayesha Rashid, MD and Yoon Smith, are making arrangements for this event to be savored in person or virtually, whichever is best suited for you. We are proud to introduce the inaugural Sippi and Ajay Khurana Houston Heroes Awards honoring community leaders who are committed to our mission: no child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) should be left untreated due to lack of information, awareness or financial resources. We sincerely hope you will join us in acknowledging these leaders who have contributed to and amplified Houston’s standing as the most generous city in the world! Our Houston Heroes Awards honorees will be represented in three categories: Outstanding Corporation, Community Leader and Frontline Hero.

During the COVD-19 pandemic, families with autistic children have endured unimaginable challenges – challenges beyond circumstances many of us may face. Therapeutic and educational programs which generally occupy 6 to 8 hours a day for an autistic child were cancelled. With the loss of their programs, autistic children were suddenly back home with their siblings learning remotely…losing all of their one-on-one professional support. Many parents were forced to make tough decisions, and dual income households became sole income households, and parents became teachers.

KNOWAutism granted more financial assistance and tuition and therapy scholarships this past year than any year in the organization’s history. In addition, KNOWAutism provided clients with H-E-B and Walmart gift cards and initiated the “As I Am” pilot art project. Art kits with paints, canvas, and every creative asset necessary, were provided to more than 40 autistic children. Families were overwhelmed with these kits, as their therapeutic success exceeded all expectations. The children’s artistic talent blossomed, bringing relief and joy to them, their siblings, and their entire household. Building on this success, the first “As I Am Arts Festival” will take place in downtown Houston’s Fish Plaza in front of the Wortham Center on Sunday, May 23rd from 11 am to 3 pm. Please plan to join us!

We sincerely hope you will be able to join us virtually or in person as an underwriter, table sponsor or guest for our As I Am Luncheon on April 8th. Sponsors at the Silver Level and above are invited to a VIP dinner hosted by Faberge. If you can’t join us, please consider making a gift to support our children to help them flourish. All of your generous gifts and donations to this event make possible our Scholarship Fund for grants to clients for therapy and tuition assistance. If you have questions or would like additional information, please call Paul-David Van Atta at 713-677-1156 (PD@KNOW-Autism.org). We look forward to sharing this day with you and celebrating the success you make possible for our KNOWAutism children.

Underwriting Opportunities:

  • $1500 – Floral & Decor Underwriter (Recognition on signage in Reception areas & in printed and digital Luncheon materials)
  • $1000 – Entertainment Underwriter (Recognition on signage in Reception areas & Recognition in printed and digital Luncheon materials)
  • $1000 – Printing & Graphic Design Underwriter (Recognition on signage in Reception areas & Recognition in printed and digital Luncheon materials)

Shining light on ability, not disability,

Ayesha Rashid, MD and Yoon Smith

Luncheon Co-chairs