Founded in 2017, formalized November of 2018. Started holding monthly events within the community with 12 autistic children. The organization grew rapidly through word of mouth. Realizing the need to offer more, in December 2018 they opened a special needs center in Cheektowaga. The center is moving into a larger space in the same plaza December 1, 2019. They have a partnership with D'Youville College Occupational Therapy Dept. and are in the process of partnering with Baker Victory Services. They now service approximately 400 children.
The project will offer DrumFit classes free of charge within the Fantastic Friends of WNY Center or off-site to special education classes, group homes, Cradle Beach, O’Shei Children’s Hospital and Baker Victory Services ITP.
Their goal is to give students hands on experience with our DrumFit curriculum that they may not otherwise have and to expand the geographical area that the DrumFit classes reach. To encourage exercise and socialization. The DrumFit program strengthens heart and lungs, builds healthy, strong bones, improves ﬂexibility, increases muscular strength and endurance, adaptable for all physical ability levels, builds brain connections, promotes social emotional learning, improves coordination, teaches ﬁne motor skills and spatial awareness, increases focus and attention, builds conﬁdence and self-expression, non-competitive and inclusive, decreases behavior issues, maximizes engagement and enhances academic learning.
The long term goal is for the children to get excited about exercise, ease their social anxieties and continue with the classes in our center.