Trips to Nets and Devils games, after-school bowling and art clubs, evening pottery classes and much more, are enjoyed by the special needs students and adults served by ECLC of New Jersey thanks in large part to the ongoing generosity of the local community.

Even in these uncertain times, ECLC received more than $13,000 in donations from Chatham-based businesses and organizations - and over the years, local entities have donated more than $100,000 in total.

Among ECLC's most consistent contributors are the Knights of Columbus, Kiwanis Club of the Chathams and Chatham Jaycees. Since 1992, the Knights have given $20,000, and over the years, the Jaycees have cumulatively donated $25,000, including $3,000 from this year's Fishawack Run.

ECLC's Executive Director, Bruce Litinger of Short Hills (pictured, left), with students Nicholas Sordillo and Grace Perlmutter, both of Chatham, gratefully accepted a donation from Knights' representative Jack Hurring of Chatham. "In these challenging economic times, we are pleased to be able to support ECLC and the good work they are doing in the community to educate and serve children and adults with special needs," said Hurring.

The Kiwanis Club has provided more than $31,000 in scholarships to ECLC's graduates since 1991.

This year's generous local donors were: the Chatham Jaycees, HSBC Bank, Investors Bancorp, ISP Sutton Laboratories, Kiwanis Club of the Chathams, Knights of Columbus of Chatham, O'Gorman & Young, Suburban Chiropractic, TD Bank, TM Ward and the Woman's Club of Chatham.

Many of these organizations and businesses also donate of their time and provide free, in-kind gifts to support ECLC events. With private support, the ECLC Foundation supplements capital expenses and new program initiatives, gives scholarships and funds special programs.

ECLC is a Chatham-based nonprofit that runs special-needs schools in Chatham and Ho-Ho-Kus for more than 300 students, ages 5-21. Students are referred to ECLC schools when their local public school determines that an out-of-district placement is indicated. In addition, ECLC offers programs and supported employment services to special-needs adults. These are moderately to severely disabled individuals with the most prevalent conditions among students being "severe learning disabilities," autism spectrum disorders, Down syndrome, and "intellectual disabilities. Learn more about how to support ECLC at www.eclcofnj.org