Kevin has made it through homelessness and over 1300 miles to start college at Syracuse University in New York! He and his mother have moved to Syracuse with basically go-bags and have given away nearly all their possessions. They are going to need everything to support a successful beginning to Kevin's college dream.
Kevin graduated high school with an above 4.0 GPA from Florida and was admitted to the history program at Syracuse University in New York as part of the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs.
The stress of not knowing if Kevin and I (his mom) would be homeless, coupled with my fibromyalgia and degenerative disc disease which requires spinal surgeries, became so great that I ended up in the hospital with life-threatening Hyponatremia and Hypokalemia. I became so weak that I could not walk, and when discharged one of my doctors told me that giving up all stress was a medical necessity. Because packing up a house full of items was exhausting and we were hours away from not having a home in Florida, we took a leap of faith and gave away nearly all our possessions to others in need in Florida.
Two wonderful disability rights activists flew to Florida and drove us all the way to New York out of the kindness of their hearts and generosity of their spirits. We want to pay them back and are very appreciative of their kindness, but we also need everything from socks to towels, tables to kitchenware, and shoes to gloves.
Another piece of good news is that Kevin and I have found a wonderful realtor in Syracuse who rented us a home; we moved in on the day we arrived in Syracuse and Kevin has permission to live off campus with me, because students with autism and Asperger's have a need for structure that is more regimented than neurotypical students require and that can be better provided off-campus.
A brief history of Kevin: Kevin was diagnosed with autism when he was very young. His doctors said he wasn’t going to walk or talk “normally”; they even told me that it would be best for Kevin to live in a group home. But I just knew that with time and a lot of hard work he could prove them wrong.
Kevin went to occupational, physical, and speech therapy for many years. Although he made significant breakthroughs, his diagnosis of autism determined that he would enter school in a non-verbal, exclusionary classroom, and I had to fight for him to be included. But once he was allowed to study like everyone else, and to the astonishment of his school's administration, he began to excel. Later, Kevin had the additional diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome and ADHD and recognized as gifted. Kevin became a student with an outstanding academic drive and an almost autodidactic intellectual curiosity with an insatiable appetite for knowledge.
In April of this year, Kevin was accepted to study history at his grandfather's Alma Mater, Syracuse University. His tuition for his freshman year is paid for through a variety of means, including a partial scholarship and university grant from Syracuse, federal grants, federal student loans, and a Parent PLUS Loan.
What we need: We need funds for transportation, gas, food, rent in Syracuse, utilities, clothing, and immediate household necessities., furniture, winter clothing, a couch, television and basic items to make our apartment a home.
We have moved over 1300 miles but do not have transportation of our own. We understood the precarious situation we were in and moved with very few belongings, leaving all furniture, household items, and most personal possessions behind.
How you can help: The fastest way for someone to help us is to donate. We would be very grateful for any donated items in Syracuse such as household items, bedding, kitchen items like pots, pans, plates, cups, and glassware, clothing, desks, office chairs, a laptop -- any item would be helpful. We are thankful for any and all assistance and want to thank everyone who donates or otherwise helps bring awareness to Kevin's story by sharing this on Facebook, Twitter, or by any other means would be greatly appreciated by us. Thank you.
Kevin is happiest when reading with his dog, Seger.
Kevin's favorite way to relax: studying history. (Yes, this is Kevin "relaxing". )
Kevin at one of his first chess tournaments.
Kevin at six months old.
This is Seger, who is not a pet he is our best friend and really a comfort to me and Kevin, we couldn't leave him and would rather have been homeless with him than have a home without him.