Mission

Yampa Valley Autism Program provides resources and direct services to individuals and families living with autism or other disorders to cultivate their abilities and maximize quality of life.

Vision

Healthy communities in the Yampa Valley where all people are valued and accepted.

Our Commitment

To provide specialized therapies, family support services, training, education, public awareness, collaboration, and advocacy.

Our Story

Originally called Autism and Asperger’s Awareness of Steamboat, this program began in 2002 as a grassroots support group led by a small group of parents who had children diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Their goal was to obtain high quality, up-to-date services for their children with autism in a small rural community. The group became a formal organization with board governance and was renamed the Yampa Valley Autism Program (YVAP) in 2004 and operated under the umbrella of the Yampa Valley Community Foundation (YVCF).

Initially, YVAP provided respite, fund reimbursement for certain services, emergency support, and educational support for families of children with autism. However, as more children were diagnosed and the need for critical services increased, in 2007 the program grew forming our own 501(c)3.

In January 2010, YVAP acquired Community Cultivation, a horticultural work-ready program and began to provide direct programming to youths with an ASD. This merger was valuable to both entities with less duplication of services, and by expanding the population we serve to include other youth at risk with developmental disabilities with similar needs. As the services have diversified, in 2015 YVAP is now a more comprehensive service and educational programming provider from early childhood into young adulthood.

Inclusiveness

Our Staff and Executive Board work closely to create a harmonious relationship with client needs. Staff and families are encouraged to attend board meetings and provide input and feedback. All staff are included in the annual Board Planning Session meetings to best plan the direction each year. Board and Staff are expected to be present and volunteer for at fundraising events and public awareness events. All Executive Board members are required to contribute financially, and all staff have personally elected to contribute financially.

YVAP also believes in representation of our client base within our board and staff, and have at a minimum of one person with autism contributing as a board member, and as well as a minimum of one paid staff. 

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Learn more about Community Cultivation »

Helpful Links

  • autism.com
    Up to date information and latest buzz in autism world
  • autismnow.org
    A wonderful resource for webinars, many of them are free!
  • autismspeaks.org
    Offers a broad spectrum of information on autism
  • thinkingautismguide.com
    Daily articles on various topics from individuals on spectrum and experts
  • fhautism.com
    A group that offers conferences, resources and updated information

Board of Directors

  • Tom Gangel, Board Chair
  • Susan Mizen, Board Secretary
  • LuEtta Loeber, Treasurer
  • Jack Dysart
  • Rosanne Iversen M.D.
  • Lock McShane
  • Becca Moore
  • Holly Nelson

Staff

  • Lisa Lorenz, Executive Director
  • Diane Yazbeck, Social Cognition Director
  • Amanda Anzalone, Program Director
  • Brad Kindred, Program Coordinator
  • Evan Duran
  • Hahn Erickson
  • Alohi Madrigal
  • Betsy Packer
  • Jessica Reagon
  • Jenna Wilson

Autism News from Medical News Today

Metformin associated with decreasing weight gain in kids with autism

The diabetes medication metformin hydrochloride was associated with decreased weight gain in a small clinical trial of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder who were taking...

Read more »