CIDA May Newsletter 

What’s Up at CIDA

Autism Acceptance Month Celebration at CIDA

On Saturday April 13th, CIDA joined forces with the Onnuri Sarang Chamber Orchestra and held a miniature performance at the CIDA Community Center to celebrate Autism Acceptance Month. The Onnuri Sarang Chamber Orchestra, established in 1999 at Onnuri Church, is comprised of 35 members with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Onnuri Sarang Chamber Orchestra has been featured in over 600 live performance events, including the music festival at the Seoul Arts Center Concert Hall, Hong Kong City Hall Concert Hall, Dinkelspiel Auditorium (Stanford University), and multiple TV shows.

Representing Onnuri Sarang, a string quartet of four talented musicians with disabilities including Autism Spectrum Disorder flew all the way from South Korea to share their beautiful music. The quartet was accompanied by volunteer musicians who complemented the string players with woodwinds, additional strings, and a piano. Moved, inspired, and united through captivating music, CIDA would like to thank everyone who joined us in celebration at this incredible event.

CIDA was Recognized at the KACF Gala

Pictured: Tiger JK and Yoon Mirae with the honoree trophy.

CIDA was honored at the Korean American Community Foundation (KACF)’s annual gala for making an exceptional impact on Korean families with disabilities. KACF is a major philanthropic organization that provides funds to nonprofits serving under-resourced Korean American individuals and families. CIDA has been a grantee of KACF for several years, delivering services and support to Korean families with disabilities to enhance their socioeconomic opportunities. Esther and Jisung Park, siblings in the CIDA network, were featured to highlight the hopes and challenges faced by CIDA families. This year, our grantor KACF honoree trophies were designed in collaboration with CIDA.

KACF also featured the original artwork “Jeong (정)” by CoSpire artists in the trophy design for the special awardees of the event. The artwork, titled “Hugs,” was created by Jennifer Kim and Dianna Choi and was inspired by Jennifer’s memories of her grandmother. We extend our gratitude to KACF for showcasing CIDA’s story, mission, and achievements at its gala.

National Pet Week

This May, CIDA is celebrating National Pet Week by highlighting some of our favorite furry friends amongst our staff and community! Be sure to follow us on Instagram to meet the pets of the CIDA Community.

Follow us on Instagram Here!

Cospire Highlights

The Social Cooperative at CIDA is an innovative workforce development project established by Community Inclusion & Development Alliance (CIDA) to deliver individualized assistance as well as create integrative employment opportunities for people with unique challenges.

CoSpire Thrift Shop & Cafe was a Tremendous Success!

We’re thrilled to announce that our recent Thrift Shop & Café Event was a tremendous success! Thanks to the incredible support of our community and dedicated job trainees, we’re excited to share that we raised over $300 to support our internship program.

We’re immensely grateful to everyone who contributed to making this event a success, whether by donating items, offering their time, or simply attending and showing their support. Your generosity and enthusiasm are truly appreciated and make a meaningful difference in our community.

Congratulations to Our Job Superstars!

We’re delighted to share that our job program intern, Michael Gass has been hired by Hallmark as a merchandising associate, and we couldn’t be prouder of his achievement.

We’re confident that he’ll bring his exceptional talents and dedication to his new role at Hallmark, where he’ll undoubtedly make a positive impact. Michael is also a singer and actor, and his confidence and public speaking abilities no doubt helped him to secure this position. In this job, Michael will travel to different stores, unpack deliveries, and set up Hallmark card displays.

Please join us in congratulating Michael on this incredible opportunity! We wish him all the best in his new adventure and look forward to seeing his continued success.

Resource Page

Mental Health

New Research

A Recent research from the Kennedy Krieger Institute indicates that a significant number of children with autism might experience suicidal thoughts and behaviors by the age of 8 or younger. If you think your child would benefit from extra support, please consider contacting your school to learn about available mental health resources.

New York City Mental Health Support, NYC 988
Feeling down, lethargic, and struggling with daily activities are common signs that you might need some extra care. It’s okay to experience these feelings, but remember, pushing through depression on your own can be overwhelming. If you need support or just someone to listen, click here to connect with NYC 988. Simply let them know your language and they’ll connect you with someone who can speak your language.

Workshop & Support Group