Welcome to the Autism on the Seas Foundation
Supporting Families, Enriching Lives...
The Autism on the Seas Foundation is a charitable nonprofit tax-exempt corporation under IRC Section 501(c)(3).
For Tax-deductible donations to the Foundation, see our Donation page.
Our Mission is to enrich the lives of families with autism and other developmental disabilities by providing the support required for family bonding, stress relief opportunities, reducing disability travel related barriers, and increasing public empathy through our financial assistance programs that help provide community support systems, travel subsidies, professional staffing services, quality of life research, and professional consultation and training to the travel industry.
The AotSF Foundation programs include:
Vacation Financial Assistance Program
To provide financial assistance to families and individuals with developmental disabilities to afford them the opportunity to participate in an AotS Vacation.
Autism Friendly Cruise Line Program
To provide a program designed for cruise lines to ensure their pre-cruise and onboard services, venues and amenities are accessible, and their staff is trained for inclusion and participation by the autism and developmental disability community.
Research Program – Quality of Life
To use research studies to analyze accommodated vacations effects on "Quality of Life" for families with special needs to better understand the value of and to further assist the direction of the accommodations required.
The Autism on the Seas Foundation (AotSF) has a unique relationship with Autism on the Seas (AotS) a state of Connecticut Limited Liability Company. AotS has been providing the additional staffing for caring for children with developmental disabilities (primarily autism) to the autism community since 2007, in order to assist the cruise lines in providing their daycare program to children with exceptional care needs relating to their disabilities. AotS has also created the cruise industries first and only Autism Friendly Standard and Certification program, which has now been adopted by AotSF.
AotS provides services (travel related special needs accommodations and professional staffing) that AotSF subsidizes and provides financial assistance to families who have financial burdens and/or disabilities that require the unique accommodations created and supported by AotS.
AotS and AotSF will work together sharing administrative resources and efforts that include the sharing of the unique information in regards to the experiences and lessons learned in establishing the appropriate accommodations within the cruise lines/ships to enhance and to continue improving the Autism Friendly Standard and Certification program for the cruise industry. Furthermore, AotS will share its Volunteer Advisory Team’s knowledge and input to form a collaborative team in the development of the Autism Friendly Training materials that will be used by the cruise lines.
The Autism on the Seas Foundation retains the services of Charitable Allies, an Indianapolis, Indiana non-profit legal organization. Charitable Allies provides effective and efficient compliance, donor stewardship, risk management, financial transparency and litigation. As a nonprofit organization, Charitable Allies is uniquely qualified to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our foundation – as an advocate, an adviser, a back-office extra pair of hands and, when necessary, as a litigator.