BECKLEY — Students in New River Community and Technical College’s Browning Social Services Club are working through the Covid-19 pandemic and preparing for their annual fundraiser for The Un-Prescription, Volleyball 4 Autism. Teams are forming and sponsors are needed for the event on Saturday, April 10 at Memorial Baptist Church, 1405 S. Kanawha St., Beckley.

“Volleyball 4 Autism is a culmination of what our social services students have learned. We’ve faced additional challenges during the past year, because of Covid-19, which forces us to be more creative in our efforts,” said New River CTC Assistant Professor of Social Services Dr. Kelli White.

“The event helps our students to take the things that they’ve learned and put them into practice, to go beyond what they’ve read in books. They have been able to plan and organize, to write grants and to follow up with donors. It's a great experience for them, and we see former students come back to help and participate."

White started Volleyball 4 Autism over a decade ago to help provide more families with access to diagnostic services through Autism Health. Now, college students run the fundraiser.

Autism Health and the non-profit, The Un-Prescription, has helped hundreds of families by providing natural approaches to treat underlying medical problems that can cause difficult behaviors and aggression, sleep problems, constipation, delayed language and poor social skills. The center, based in Beckley, currently serves patients from 16 states, but funds raised through Volleyball 4 Autism help West Virginia families.

Registration for teams of eight is $100 if registered by March 29 or $150 at the door, and the 2021 event will have two divisions, one for those who play regularly and one for those with less experience. T-shirt sponsorships are available for $100, now through March 31.

The 2021 tournament will kick-off at 9 a.m. with the battle for the net challenge between the West Virginia State Police and the Raleigh County Sheriff's Department and Jan-Care and the Beckley Police Department.

For additional information on Volleyball 4 Autism, to register a team, donate or sponsor the event, email volleyball4autism@gmail.com.

New River Community and Technical College serves nine counties in southeastern West Virginia from the Greenbrier Valley Campus (Lewisburg), Mercer County Campus (Princeton), Nicholas County Campus (Summersville) and Raleigh County Campus (Beaver).

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