1221 Geneva National Ave. S, Lake Geneva, WI  53147  *  262-245-7310

Turning Disabilities

into Possibilities...

Serving the Special Needs Community

of Walworth County, WI

 How will YOU turn disabilities...
into possibilities?


* Autism now affects 1 in 50 children.

* Boys are 4x more likely to be diagnosed than girls.

* More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with AIDS, diabetes and cancer combined.

* Autism costs a family $60,000 a year, on average.

"I was beyond words and in tears when I found out both of our boys were grant recipients. I want you to know how excited and grateful we are." - mother of 2 children with autism that received grants from the Autism Support Fund

Understanding Autism & the
Autism Support Fund (ASF)

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a complex neurobiological disorder that affects an individual's ability to learn, socialize and communicate effectively. These children often struggle with making friends, adapting to daily activities and managing their own behavior. Approximately 1% of American children aged 3 to 17 has an autism spectrum disorder. Based on Walworth County's population statistics from 2010 (24.2% age 18 & under), that translates to approximately 300 children living in Walworth County that have some form of Autism.


Children with autism can benefit from in-home treatment and various therapies which are often covered by insurance and/or government programs. However, many of these children require additional resources, classes and equipment for which there is very limited outside funding.

What is the ASF and Who does it help?

For a family that has a child with an ASD, the cost of additional resources, classes and equipment can be staggering...even overwhelming. Recognizing the fact that many children in Walworth County are not receiving the comprehensive services they need, the Mercy Foundation has started the Autism Support Fund (ASF).

The Autism Support Fund makes financial resources available to Walworth County families for things such as:
* Social skills classes
* Sensory equipment
* Safety equipment
* Respite care
* Therapeutic materials


All Walworth County families of children with an ASD whose child also attends school in Walworth County are encouraged to apply. You do not need to be a Mercy Options client or have a Mercy doctor be your primary caregiver.
How Do I Apply for Funds from the ASF?

Click the PDF icon (above, on the left) to download the 2014 ASF Grant Application and instructions. Applications are now being accepted through Jan. 31, 2014. Grant notifications will be made in March. Any questions regarding the application process should be directed to Angie Levin at Mercy Options in Janesville at 608-755-4714 or alevin@mhsjvl.org.


Additional dates grant applications will be accepted:

January 1 - 31, 2014 with notifications by March 31, 2014

April 1 - 30, 2014 with notifications by June 30, 2014

July 1 - 31, 2014 with notifications by September 30, 2014

October 1 - 31, 2014 with notifications by December 31, 2014

How is the ASF Funded?
In early 2012, The Mercy Foundation recognized a huge hole in funding options for families that have a child with an autism spectrum disorder. In response, they formed the Autism Support Fund (ASF) with the hope that they could ease the financial pain so many families experience in treating their child with autism. The Geneva National Foundation (GNF) board of directors saw the ASF as a tremendous opportunity to help turn disabilities into possibilities in Walworth County for hundreds of families and committed to initially fund the ASF through the 2012 & 2013 L.E.O. events. Since 2012, the GNF has donated $52,000 to the Autism Support Fund. The Mercy Foundation will also be raising money for the ASF through various additional fundraising events.
100% of the proceeds the ASF receives are directly used to help families with an autistic child. All administrative and overhead costs to support and manage the ASF are absorbed by the Mercy Foundation.