Meet our Founder
Founded by Jay in 2019, Connect A Kid was established in order to provide children an environment in which they can reach their fullest potential. What started off as a small community project has blossomed into a growing support group that's committed to empowering young adults of all backgrounds.
"During COVID, Connect A Kid has provided the neurodiverse students that we support an important means to communicate during these especially difficult times and like our slogan says sometimes you just need a friend"
Meet our Vice President
I’m Julia! I’m a junior at Windermere Prep. I’m super into SGA, Key Club, and other clubs at school. In my free time, I love reading, cooking, and traveling. I’m so excited to be a part of Connect A Kid and to spend time volunteering for this great cause. I really think its important for society as a whole to become more familiar with and accepting of neurodivergent people, and I think that the social opportunities that Connect A Kid provides allows that to happen
Meet the team
Andrea Matos Devesa
My name is Andrea! I’m a sophomore and a super active and involved theater kid at Windermere Prep. I love talking to people and making connections so I am so excited to be a part of Connect A Kid. Neurodiverse students have so much to offer but often go unacknowledged because they struggle to communicate; I’d love to be able to help bridge the gap!
"I think it’s crucial for neurotypicals to socialize with neurodiverse people because a social life is important for anyone. Through ConnectAKid I believe we can accomplish this goal along with spreading awareness."
"Hi, my name is Grant. I believe that neurodiverse children should have the opportunity to make friends and gain valuable connections in life. The ability to socialize should be available to everyone, and that is what the Connect A Kid club and I are all about."
"Hi, I am Luisa Luo. I believe it is critical for the new generation to be informed and educated on the subject matter. I have personally worked with autistic children and assisted them in the process of exploring arts and creativity. The journey we embraced together inspired me to explore the subject matter in my own writing as a neurotypical person and an ally. I have faith in not only supporting the neurodiverse community but also empowering every member."
"My name is Lyla Tsiokos, and I have been attending Windermere Prep since pre k 3! I’m a very social person that is excited to learn more about the neurodiverse community and spread awareness!"
It is necessary to be kind to the neurodiverse as they got stuck with labels about how they are "different" from normal people, when in reality they are still just like us, but need more understanding in where their thinking and health comes from.
Hi! My name is Owen. I think that it is important that we connect with neurodiverse people to help build their confidence, self esteem, and motivation.
Hey everyone, I am Sulayman Ahmed and I think that everyone should have friends that they can hang out with or talk to even if they are neurodiverse or neurotypical. It is crucial for everyone to have friendship in their lives otherwise life becomes really lonely, and I want to do everything I can to make sure kids have active lives with people that they can call friends.
I take pride in the service of others!
Hi, I’m Orlando, and I love being able to make a difference in our community. Connect A Kid is a great outlet to help the neurodiverse and I’m proud to be a part of it.
Maria Clara Scavuzzi Quidute
"Volunteering at Connect A Kid is a most rewarding way to spend a Saturday.I have connected and made lifelong friendships and the experiences warm my heart when I think back."
"Helping those with learning differences like Autism is something I enjoy being a part of."
Ana Carolina Leitao
"Volunteering at SALT and at Pathways has impacted my life in positive ways that I can't simply explain."
"I really enjoy all aspects of helping others and connecting with him on a social level.It helps me as much as it helps them."
Gabriela Castilho Ribeiro
"Just listening to someone that spends too much time feeling unheard can have a profound impact."
Giulia Martuci Aragão
I love seeing a blank expression fill with joy. A smile is all it takes to brighten anyone's day!
Volunteering at SALT changed my life and how I perceive it.
I believe that it is important to be kind to the neurodiverse because they are often misjudged and declared as the underdogs. These people are still humans and deserve to be treated with love and patience.
The most rewarding feeling comes from friendships. It doesn't matter how different we are, what matters most, is how similar we are.
Sharing a laugh or a smile is something that brings people together and meeting new people is something I enjoy doing.
We help people on the autism spectrum establish connections that they wouldn't normally have. It is a unique support based on friendship and understanding.
I like to share my music with the friends I make and introducing them to new sounds has been fun!
I think it’s important to connect with neurodiverse kids because they don’t deserve the setbacks they have to face. Everyone should spend more time helping others and take any opportunity to better the community.
To connect with others and make a safe environment for those among us that need it but might not get it is imperative. Everyone has a voice that deserves to be heard and uplifted.
Listening and watching people with autism, you begin to realize that we are all not unlike one another. It is so important to realize and recognize this and volunteering has helped me see things I didn't notice before.
Theresa (Tess) Dowling
Hi! I think it is really great to make friends with the neurodiverse because they are so often left out of social opportunities.
Hi, my name is Zhengyu Liu and I believe that it is important to connect with neurodiverse children for 2 reasons. First, I believe that each one of us is unique in our own ways, and that is no exception to the neurodiverse. Secondly, I do believe that some of us may not be as fortunate as one another, and especially because of this, it should be our duty and responsibility to take care of those who are in need of aid.
Kids with differences are often treated poorly because of their disposition, and I am glad to be part of Connect A Kid which helps to give positive experiences to the neurodiverse.