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22 donations

This fundraiser ended on 01/29/12

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With their son J in treatment for Autism-related issues hours away and 2 recent lay-offs, the Morins need a little help from their friends.

If you know Jon Morin from high school (Maranacook, class of 1993) you know he’s a quiet guy who doesn't talk much about himself, but is always there to listen to others in their time of need. If you know Amanda, his wife, either from high school (Bangor High School, class of 1992), or otherwise, you know she’s not nearly as quiet, but stands up rather loudly for the underdog and always tries to find the solution or way to make a problem better.

Now Jon and Amanda are struggling to find answers and solutions to really difficult problems. They have an ill child, Amanda was laid-off right after Thanksgiving and Jon was a casualty of his company’s latest round of lay-off’s last week. The Morins are trying to manage the medical and travel expenses associated with a sick child and they are trying to raise funds for equipment that will make his transition to home easier. They need your help to do it.

Right now the family isn't sure how they are going to pay for medical and travel expenses, not to mention the more basic expenses of rent, food, diapers and heat. Just as importantly, they are working hard to put together a “sensory space” for J. for when he comes home from the hospital. It’s a space in which he can use things like weighted balls, Theraputty and other forms of sensory input to help him regulate his body and emotional state. Sensory equipment and the gymnastic mats needed to line the space are expensive.

Jon and Amanda’s 9-year-old, son J. has Asperger’s syndrome, a form of Autism, and a mood disorder. J. is only one of Jon and Amanda’s three children. They also have an almost two-year-old son and a teenage daughter.

In September 2011, J's health and safety began to deteriorate and Jon and Amanda had to make the difficult decision to put him in an inpatient treatment program to keep him safe and provide appropriate treatment. Unfortunately, appropriate treatment for a child with an Autism Spectrum Disorder is hard to come by in Maine and J. has now been hospitalized three times. In the past five months he’s spent less than five weeks total at home, and has been in three different hospitals, one four hours away from home and the most recent one (where he is now) two hours away from home.

The travel to see J.has been tough and they are lucky if they see him once a week, especially since week-time travel often splits their family apart. Their teenager, an honor-roll student, stays with friends or relatives so she can go to school without interruption. The littlest one stays with other family or at home with one parent while the other goes to see “Boo-Boo,” which is what he and J. call each other.

Amanda worked as an Early Intervention Specialist for years before becoming a parenting/education writer. Her biggest contract was with the New York Time’s company,, but she was one of many laid-off when the online property did some reorganization late last year. She did pick up a few contracts recently and has even written about how J’s diagnosis has come as somewhat of a relief to the family, in that they can now move forward with school and life knowing for sure what they are dealing with.

Before he was laid off, Jon, a telecommunications tech/programmer, was lucky enough to work from home, making managing home life a bit easier.

Sometimes, no matter how hard you try to be a Weeble (they wobble, but they don’t fall down), it’s hard to get back on your feet when life keeps knocking you down. If you can find it in your heart or wallet to help this family stand tall, please donate. It doesn’t matter how much, every little bit adds up to a tank of gas or a box of diapers.
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