an autism journey

If you are following our story, you know an agreement was reached with the Illinois Attorney General’s office and Ms. Lea Kaydus of Animals for Autism. She has been required to pay the families back in full, including donations that came in on behalf of our children. That is great, right? If you are therefore wondering why we are not jumping up and down for joy, let me explain it to you.

The investigation led to a discovery of several hundreds of dollars in donations that the families were lied to about. Lea Kaydus hid donations that our friends, family, and community had donated to help our children. She stopped communicating with us. She sent us old pictures of dogs and said they were our children’s dogs currently in training. She lied about her experience, her staff, her dogs. She broke all communication with us. We never received our promised financial documents or contracts, training agreements. We were never “introduced” to our dogs as promised.

Still, there is no admission of guilt whatsoever. She faces no criminal charges, and Pepsi and Global Giving are allowing her to keep $50,000 in funding that they gave her to use to help provide our children with service dogs. She keeps it all. The families involved have wasted a lot of time that we didn’t have to waste and have been through a great deal of stress. Her settlement is about as harsh as me returning an item to WalMart and asking for a refund… then letting them keep the gift card that was used as partial payment.

Here is what her attorney has to say about all this:

Kaydus’ attorney, Patrick Smith of Springfield, said he doesn’t necessarily agree with Madigan’s statements about Kaydus’ conduct, and Kaydus denies any wrongdoing.

“It is easier to resolve it this way and go forward,” Smith said.

Kaydus was planning to provide dogs to the families that paid her, but the training was taking longer than the families expected, Smith said.

The proposed settlement would allow Kaydus to continue to work with five other families still waiting for dogs from Animals for Autism, Smith said. She plans to provide dogs to those families, Smith said.

 You can read the full article here:

That doesn’t exactly seem like she is sorry, does it? Nor does it seem she has even been stopped from continuing to hurt others.  As for Pepsi and Global Giving and their role in all this…… ….. hear their silence? It seems Animals for Autism, Pepsi, and Global Giving are all very similiar to each other. They none care.

Guess what though… we (the families) are stronger than all this. We will carry on…. our children will overcome. The three characters mentioned above are the real losers.


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