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Autism Website Relaunches to Offer Resources, Treatments and Hope for Families
Date:3/25/2009

Kyle's Treehouse prepares for Autism Awareness Month in April

PHILADELPHIA, March 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Kyle's Treehouse, a website dedicated to empowering all people touched by autism to make effective treatment choices, rolled out a soft launch of its new Web 2.0 site and at the six-month point its users have declared the new format and social media tools a success. The site's main mission is to encourage sharing of information and experiences, primarily around treatment options, the traditionally non-medical therapies and programs available to families searching for symptomatic and long lasting positive change in their child's well-being. The site fills the gap in the toolset parents have to manage their child's autism.

Working with SocialSphere Strategies, a leading Web 2.0 strategy firm, Kyle's Treehouse provides a dynamic virtual support community through its website and Facebook and Twitter causes. Those affected by autism can connect, share and participate in discussion forums, create a personal community page, and rank and review treatment options. Unique to Kyle's Treehouse is the ability to rate the treatment options based on user experiences. More than just a thumbs up/thumbs down ranking system, the rating component allows users to share details of what worked and what didn't about a specific treatment. There are no other online autism communities that offer this feature.

Jenifer Westphal, founder and president of Kyle's Treehouse, launched the Web 2.0 site so parents can connect in an interactive and more personalized environment.

        In talking with parents whose children had been
        newly diagnosed with autism, I realized they were
        craving the same information and human connection we
        were when Kyle was diagnosed. Knowing first hand the
        emotional, physical, and financial toll autism takes
        on any family I decided to launch the discussion
        forums, blog, Twitter profile, Facebook page and the
        treatment description and ranking system. Prior to
        this there was no site where you could find all your
        treatment options and learn what has and has not
        worked for families affected by autism. Our message
        to parents is one of hope, and the newest additions
        to Kyle's Treehouse demonstrate how hope can spread
        from one user to another.

                                            Jenifer Westphal

Kyle's Treehouse has additional features planned for the site which will incorporate more user-uploaded video and a more extensive online repository of recommended sites, books, and articles.

About Kyle's Treehouse

Kyle's Treehouse, a 501 (c) 3 organization, is dedicated to empowering all people touched by autism to make effective choices. The organization and website was founded by Jenifer and Jeffrey Westphal, whose son Kyle was diagnosed with autism in 1998, The Westphals spent the next three years trying to navigate the often conflicting ways to approach and cope with the diagnosis. Their journey amounted to a self-directed investigation. In the end, they implemented the Son-Rise program for 3 1/2 years in combination with dietary, sensory and alternative therapies, which have proved to be highly effective. Today, Kyle functions as a communicative, creative and engaged teenager. The frustration the Westphals experienced on this difficult journey led them to launch www.kylestreehouse.org, a website that helps newly diagnosed families sift through the mountains of autism information, learn about a wide range of treatment options and share their questions, concerns, and experiences with other families through online community forums.


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SOURCE Kyle's Treehouse
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