April is Autism Awareness Month. So there is something I'd like to caution people about when it comes to making charitable donations.
Despite the misleading name, "Autism Speaks", the largest and most vocal autism organisation, does not have any one on its board or leadership that is on the autistic spectrum. They've caused much grief in the autistic community by bullying autistics into silence, and presenting autism in a way that dehumanises us.
There are many others groups that need support, such as the Autism Society of America in the US and the National Autistic Society in the UK, both of which, despite having flaws (as all groups do) at least make an effort to have people on the spectrum on their boards/committees, to support Autistics in all life stages, and to be sensitive to the feelings of actual Autistic people.
National Autism Society, UK: http://www.nas.org.uk
Autism Society of America: http://www.autism-society.org
So if you make a donation- please, make it to groups that care about what Autistics have to say, rather than a group that ironically goes out of its way to silence us.