Please join us on Saturday, January 20th for our next Buddy Break.

Respite is one of the most common resources that the Autism Resource Center is asked about and one of the most difficult requests to meet. This is why Options and Advocacy and First Church of Crystal Lake is so pleased to announce that there is a FREE respite opportunity available right here in McHenry County. Buddy Break is a free program for all children who have any physical, cognitive, medical or other hidden disability as well as those who have a chronic or life threatening illness and those who are medically fragile. We call these kids our VIPs. The VIPs and their siblings come to Buddy Break for three hours of 1:1 attention and kid centered activities while their parents get a much needed break to care for themselves or simply get something done that would otherwise be too difficult with the kids in tow.

VIPs between the ages of 2-16 years old and their siblings who are between the ages of 4 through 11 are invited to attend. Each child—VIP and siblings—are assigned a Buddy to be by their side for the full three hours. All Buddies are required to attend a 2 hour Buddy Break 101 training class as well as pass a background and reference check before being assigned a VIP or sibling.

To sign up your child(ren) or for more information please visit or call Karen Klaus at 815-459-0785 ext. 124 or Susan Perkins at 815-477-4720 ext 255. Please be sure to respond to the Sign-up Genius RSVP email to reserve your spot for each session. VIPS and siblings are accepted on a first come/ first served basis— until we have run out of Buddies who are available for the session.

The next session dates are scheduled for 1/20, 2/17, 3/24, 4/21, 5/19, and 6/23 They are held at First Church Crystal Lake, 236 W. Crystal Lake Ave, Crystal Lake IL 60014.