About Us

Founded on the desire to offer children with autism enriched life experiences, ACF has grown to include Day Habilitation and Home and Community programs

Mission

ACF strives to provide life-enriching experiences and resources to individuals and families living with disabilities in a safe and respectful environment.

Vision

To enrich the lives of those with disabilities today and build a brighter tomorrow.

Values

Compassion

Attention

Respect

Encompassment

Support

History

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The Autism Cares Foundation (ACF) was founded in 2007 by Linda and Frank Kuepper, parents of a child with autism. Their goal was to establish an organization focused on improving life experiences of individuals with disabilities. Their goal was for all individuals to have age-appropriate activities to enjoy in a safe and secure environment. The roster grew from six activities in the first year to nearly 100 in year three.

Today, the participants can enjoy over 200 activities each year. These include arts & crafts, bowling, bounce events, movies, physical fitness, glee club, holiday parties, dances, prom, and so much more. The participating families consider ACF events essential for overall well-being.

In 2016, Autism Cares Foundation began an Adult Services Division (ASD) focused on providing adults with disabilities facilities and community services. ASD has grown to include an Adult Day Program, Home and Community Program, and job training and development to be offered in the near future. Moving forward, we plan to continue to develop ASD programs addressing the needs of individuals with disabilities throughout their lifetime.

A Message From Our Founders

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Since its inception, Autism Cares Foundation has focused on providing and expanding resources for people with disabilities.

ACF’s goal is to support people to experience all that life has to offer. Our activities, nearly 200 in a typical year, are viewed as a necessity by parents, care providers, and our participants, to encourage social interactions and friendships.

Our Adult Services Division provides services to individuals 21 years old and over. These offerings include day program, home and community, and in the future, job support services. We plan to expand services to accommodate more individuals and provide additional services and resources.

Delivering high quality and reliable services are the hallmarks of ACF. As we grow, we will continue to focus on optimizing each individual’s strengths by providing needed resources in a caring and compassionate environment.

The need for resources exceeds the limitations currently offered by most organizations. Today, almost everyone is influenced by a child, friend, or close acquaintance with a disability and the challenges facing these individuals and families. To continue to address their needs, we need your support. Please consider donating, volunteering your professional skills, volunteering as a host for our many activities, or providing other unique talents to help Autism Cares Foundation deliver more services.

Acf

Everyone makes a difference, the difference among us is the difference you choose to make.
Thank you for your support.

Linda & Frank Kuepper Co-Founders Autism Cares Foundation
and our Board of Directors Marlene De la Cruz, Frank Kuepper, Linda Kuepper, Christine Paul Rusinko, Jill Schweizer, Fred Sciascia

Board of Directors

Marlene De la Cruz is the Global President of Adelphi Research Franchise, the pharmaceutical market research consulting arm of Adelphi Group (an Omnicom company) based in Doylestown, PA, London and Manchester, UK. Marlene has over 30 years of marketing and sales experience in the pharmaceutical and financial services industries. She obtained her B.A. and MBA from LaSalle University. Marlene began her autism advocacy work with the Bucks County Autism Support Coalition Board and joined the ACF Board in 2016.  She lives in Holland, PA with her two wonderful children, Amanda and Alex, and husband of 30 years, Lee.  Her motivation for her autism advocacy work is her 24-year-old son, Alex, and ensuring that he has the opportunities we all deserve.

Linda Kuepper is co-founder and CEO of the Board of Directors of Autism Cares Foundation. Linda is the heart of the Foundation, bringing people together as she facilitates and solves issues on a wide range of topics. She is tasked with charting the future growth and vision, a role that she is well suited for. Linda is the mother of two children, one having Autism, giving her unique insights into the needs, issues, and challenges families face. She is focused on providing education, life skills, job skills, respite, and permanent residency options. Prior to Autism Cares Foundation, Linda served as an administrative assistant to various CEOs of a Fortune 500 company.

Frank Kuepper is co-founder and President of the Board of Directors of Autism Cares Foundation.  Frank uses many years of expertise to direct all aspects of daily operations, strategic planning initiatives, and the future development of the Foundation.    He was instrumental in beginning Autism Cares Foundation’s Adult Services Division, which provides opportunities for all people with intellectual disabilities opportunities to expand their life experiences.

Frank is the Vice President of Procurement for Brightview Landscapes.  Prior to joining Brightview, Frank held various positions at David’s Bridal and Kay-Bee Toys, including Director of Procurement, Director of Store Operations, and Director of Human Resource Development.

Christine Paul-Rusinko  serves on the Board of Directors and is the Vice President & Treasurer of Autism Cares Foundation. She has been with Autism Cares Foundation (ACF) from the very beginning in 2007, offering business advice and help with all areas in the growth process. She came to know Linda and Frank Kuepper, the Co-Founders of ACF, by way of being a neighbor and sharing life changes. Christine is the former Owner/President and CEO of Petroleum Recycling Corporation providing alternative fuel to industrial users.  Christine was in the industry for over 35 years and worked with federal and multi-state environmental agencies to assure compliance on permitting for the collection, transporting, processing, and distribution of fuel.  As the owner, she was responsible for all aspects of the business. Christine currently provides business and financial guidance to a variety of companies from Florida to Pennsylvania.

Jill Schweizer retired from 37 years in Education in 2019. During her educational career, she taught first grade and special education, was an Elementary Guidance Counselor, and ended her career as a Supervisor of Special Education working with students with autism in the Central Bucks School District. While working as a supervisor, she met and was inspired by families with students on the spectrum. This inspiration encouraged her to start the Bucks County Autism Support Coalition. The BCASC operated for 10 years, providing resources to Bucks County, and then folding by giving their financial support to Autism Cares Foundation. In retirement, Jill continues her work as an adjunct professor at Delaware Valley University, teaching courses in Autism, Diversity, Social and Emotional Learning, and Special Needs. Jill’s work with ACF is a continuation of her dedication to individuals and families serving the autism community.

Fred Sciascia was first introduced to Autism Cares Foundation many years ago when Frank and Linda Kuepper were in the initial stages of establishing the Foundation. He quickly recognized the monumental task of helping the Foundation in its mission of enriching the lives of individuals with disabilities and Autism. Over the years, Fred has helped the Foundation in planning for the future and by supporting members of our community to plan for their loved ones.  He is instrumental in facilitating ACF’s annual Race for Resources.  Today, Fred serves as a Board Member and is a First Vice President – Wealth Management Advisor for Merrill Lynch.

Meet Our Staff

Jacqui Makowski
Executive Director
jmakowski@autismcaresfoundation.org
215-942-2273

As the Executive Director for Autism Cares Foundation, Jacqui is responsible for continuing the growth of the Foundation’s activities, and for developing the strategic initiatives to achieve the Foundation’s present and future plans. Jacqui brings more than 25 years of experience in fundraising, public relations, and organizational operations. Jacqui is also the mother of a child with Autism, and like so many others, has a front-row seat to some of the unique challenges. Prior to joining Autism Cares Foundation, Jacqui served in the non-profit industry in social services and education.

Gina Cincotta
CEO Adult Services
gcincotta@autismcaresfoundation.org
215-942-2273

Gina spearheads the growth of the adult programs for Autism Cares Foundation. Previously as KenCrest’s Curriculum Director, Gina developed the company's first Remote Services Program during the shut-downs of COVID. She created activities and instruction for hundreds of adults with intellectual disabilities. Winner of their annual staff award, she structured new community outings, trained hundreds of staff, hosted AmeriCorps members, created a new volunteer initiative, and presented at national and regional conferences. She has experience teaching elementary school, alternative high school, and daycare. She graduated from the University of the Arts, Phila, and received her Master’s of Education in Instructional Design and her Master’s of Science in Management and Leadership in 2021.

Getting Started