LITTLE FALLS/CEDAR GROVE, NJ - In recognition of April being National Autism Awareness Month, The Fine Grind in Little Falls will once again host of the art of Matthe Ribaudo, a young artist from Cedar Grove with autism.
Ribaudo will have his art displayed throughout the month of April. One hundred percent of the profits made from the sale of his art will be donated to Pathways for Exceptional Children in Montville. Ribaudo has been exhibiting his art every April at The Fine Grind for Autism Awareness month since 2012.
The art opening will be on Saturday, April 29 from 2 to 4 p.m. at The Fine Grind. Musician Maggie Squilante, a longtime friend of Matthew, will be providing the tunes.
Thanks to some extremely generous donors from the Cedar Grove Police Department, the community and donors found through The Fine Grind art exhibit last year, Ribaudo will be getting a dual service dog autism/hypoglycemic, Winston, who will help him stay healthy and gain some independence as he gets older. You can follow Winston's progress here and here.
What is autism? At its core, autism is a neurological challenge where children have difficulty relating and connecting to those around them. One out of 68 children have autism and one out of 54 boys are diagnosed with it. More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with childhood cancer, juvenile diabetes and pediatric AIDS combined.
About Matthew: Matthew is 17 years old and has autism; it’s just another part of who he is. Matthew has many talents and one of them is drawing. Sometimes he uses drawing as a form of communication; most of the time, he does it just because he loves to do it.
About Beth and Joe, Matthew’s parents: We are the parents of the most amazing, wonderful 17-year-old boy Matthew. He has changed the way we see things, he has changed the way we think. Matthew has taught us to be braver and to see with our heart. He has shown us that everyone is different and everyone is special in their own way. The most profoundly beautiful and exquisite moments we have ever had have been those we have spent with Matthew.