PANAMA CITY - New information from the Center for Disease Control suggests a much higher prevalence of autism than first thought.
In 2000, the C.D.C. said 1 in 150 children had the spectrum disorder. Today, that number is 1 in 68.
Wednesday afternoon, George Butchikas, his wife Carolyn, and daughter Camille continued their tradition of donating $40,000 to the FSU-PC Early Childhood Autism Program.
The money will be able to provide scholarships for ten families to receive services over the next year in ECAP.
In 1990, parents of autistic children would have to travel to UCLA to find a specialists like we have here in at FSU.
With the school's Advanced Behavior Analysis program's growth, it provides a cheaper and more accessible option for locals and visitors alike but Butchikas says more can be done.
He said, "If we could get a major sponsor, someone to come aboard and share a partnership with us and Florida State and really make a huge difference, we wouldn't have to have children wait in line to be able to get therapy. We'd be able to get everybody in Bay County."
The Butchikas host a fundraising dinner every October at Angelo's Steak Pit for the foundation, but donations are accepted year round at www.gabfoundationforautism.org