The Autism Project

The Autism Project (TAP) provides a center of excellence for services, knowledge and best practices related to living and working with children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD).

Upcoming Events

Dear Friends, Supporters and Families with Autism,


The Autism Project (TAP) is no longer providing programs or activities for our Central Texas families. We have had a wonderful run of 8 years and we thank you for your interest, support, and inspiration. Unfortunately, the administrative hurdles and mounting financial burden have overcome our capacity to continue the program. (The cost to reopen TAP for one year of service is $170,000).


TAP has existed since 2006 on The University of Texas campus. We have provided an estimated $800,000 of programming value to the community and more than 40,000 hours of Academic Service Learning and volunteerism.


TAP has traveled to communities, school districts and Region Education Service Centers throughout Texas. We have met children and adults with Autism, their parents, grandparents, siblings, friends, teachers and therapists. You have given our University of Texas students the opportunity to create and teach outdoor education, interdisciplinary games, and how to put research into practice. We have learned with you, laughed with you, listened and even shared a few tears.


Your support and trust in TAP has enabled us to spend adventure weekends camping with your children, many of whom had never spent the night away from home much less slept in a tent. We watched as your kids soared through the air on zip lines, and fearlessly rode horses. We watched stars with them, sang around campfires and watched friendships form. We ran the length of the UT football field during an on-campus overnight event and sang the Eyes of Texas at the Student Activity Center during a football watch party. We offered summer camps, themed weekends and art classes. We danced and sang with Austin songwriters and performers during our music programs and showed a movie in the courtyard during a social skills event for adults. We guided teenagers as they put down their computers and engaged in team sports, and encouraged both adults and children as they embraced fitness. This list is endless.


You have been our motivation to continue for so many years, and if not for the growing demands for financial support, we would still be offering programs. In the past, TAP has been run and managed by volunteers and without a budget, but University protocol demands have become too cumbersome to manage without employing staff.


We continue to work with community partners to establish the kinds of programs our TAP families seek. We are continuing our research in the connection between physical activity and movement skills, and the health and well-being of children and adults on the autism spectrum. We will keep our TAP database active and share information about programs and research updates. In these ways we hope to stay connected with you.


It has been an honor to serve our TAP families. You have graciously welcomed our University of Texas students into your lives. We have watched your children grow and our students learn lessons that are not available in a textbook or classroom for either.


Simply put, thank you.


Pamela Buchanan