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GLEN ROCK, NJ – The United Way and REED Next, a program of the REED Foundation for Autism, have partnered to provide a four-bedroom home for autistic individuals on Bradford Street.
“We’re happy to announce we have secured the construction financing for the home,” Bergen County United Way President Tom Toronto said.
Construction should begin by the end of the year and be complete by Spring 2019.
"It should be a quick build, weather permitting," Toronto said.
The residence has been in the planning for many years, according to Toronto, who updated the Borough Council on progress Sept. 12.
Through the change in state government, Toronto said he met opposition on design and cost of the house, which he refused to change saying he remains committed to the original design.
“We are currently going through a building department review and are ready to pull permits,” he said. “Not this week, but within a few days.”
Toronto introduced Jill Nadison, CEO and Executive Director, REED Foundation for Autism.
Nadison and her team are currently undergoing certification to run a home-based program that caters to autistic individuals, Toronto said.
REED Next supports adults 21 and over on the autism spectrum with continued education, training and services to lead meaningful lives, according to Megan Ascik who works with the REED Foundation for Autism.
"The REED Foundation for Autism is committed to providing individuals with autism the opportunity to live, work and thrive at every stage of their lives," Ascik said in a follow-up email. "The Foundation raises funds to support Reed Next and REED Academy, which provides Early Intervention instruction in both clinic and home-based settings, as well as educational services to children age 3-21."
“I’m thrilled that you’re here,” councilwoman Amy Martin said. “I can’t thank Tom enough for not cutting corners on this project. I am personally grateful for your patience.”
“I am so happy you have chosen to make this an autistic-themed home,” councilwoman Kristine Morieko said. “This helps the people of Glen Rock, so many families are affected by autism.”
Nadison said applications to live at the home will undergo a public process.
“I want to welcome you to Glen Rock,” councilman Mike O’Hagan said. “This is a great day for Glen Rock. I want to thank the mayor and John VanCuren for helping this to happen. Tom [Toronto] kept everyone calm through the process and I appreciate his ability to see past the horizon. I couldn’t be more proud that this is coming to our town.”