According to the latest studies, such as one conducted by Washington University in St. Louis in 2012, more than 50% of youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) had no participation in employment or education two years after graduating high school.
Throughout the development process, we tried to envision all types of situations where BusyKid could be a tool for parents of all children. In just a few months we have heard from many parents of ASD kids who have been able to simulate a real-world working experience at home years before their child is ready to enter the workforce. As one parent said, “It’s the perfect practice test.”
BusyKid lets kids 5-16 years old earn, save, share, spend and invest real money wisely through our hands-on mobile platform. However, it’s also exciting to know that our service is helping kids who need more development socially or in work situations.
As Crickett Barrientos, Founder of the nonprofit Sounds of Autism said “I am always looking for tools to help my child and other children learn life skills to support their future. BusyKid has shown me a way to introduce important financial lessons to my kids despite their abilities. It’s also proving to be a great first step to introducing my children to the inner workings of holding a job, which is important to me as well.
It is estimated that 1.5 million people in the US have ASD and about 80% of them are under age 22, according to Advancing Futures for Adults with Autism. ASD youth could be just beginning to encounter the challenges of finding and retaining a quality job. Another issue to consider because they are not experiencing the workforce early in life, ASD young adults can be at a disadvantage when it comes to learning about paying bills, maintaining a budget and understanding the value of a dollar.
Raising children is never easy, but when your child needs extra help in certain areas it can be hard for parents to find resources to support a child’s growth and development. We hope that parents will find BusyKid to be an easy to use resource that helps them their children about work, rewards, paychecks, managing a bank account and other aspects of finances. Then, when the kids are ready to look for a job, they are familiar with and ready to handle these parts of the process.
Generally, real world financial experience is not taught in schools, causing huge issues as these teens and young adults are faced with thousands of financial decisions. The situation becomes even more difficult when there is an ASD teen or young adult ready for a first job or wanting to be on their own. BusyKid was built so parents can spend years prior to this point working with kids to teach them how to manage a bank account, budget a paycheck, invest in stocks, and learn the value of hard work. I think we may have gotten it right!