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About Us

Unity for Autism was established in 2004 by Kathy Carsley, a mother of two beautiful sons, one of whom has Autism. As a parent of a newly diagnosed non-verbal child with Autism at the time, Kathy created the foundation after witnessing the discouraging lengthy waitlists firsthand and her strong desire to tap into her child’s potential. The result of her ongoing advocacy for her son led to his remarkable progress. Today her son is a thriving, independent and articulate young man fully integrated into society. His success inspired Kathy to help more families enhance their child’s development who do not have the financial means to access support and programs privately.


Unity for Autism (UFA) is a national charitable foundation, volunteer-based and parent-driven, with extremely low annual administrative costs.  The TOTAL annual expenses for this charity is only TWO PERCENT, ensuring that all monies raised goes entirely to programs that will make an immediate and profound impact on the development and/or well-being of someone affected by Autism and support the heroes that care for them. The primary purpose of UFA is to provide financial assistance to excellent organizations across Canada to address the crisis of demand that exists, enable parents to tap into their child’s potential, and provide meaningful opportunities for adults with Autism! While there is currently no definitive cause of autism, early diagnosis helps a person receive the support and services that they need, which can lead to a quality life filled with opportunity. When there is unity, there is always victory!



Unity for Autism is governed by an exceptional Board of Directors made up of stakeholders with a sensitivity to Autism who bring a wide range of expertise and perspective to the foundation.


Kathy Carsley, Director and Founder


Matthew Horan, Director


Richard Horrobin, Director


Michel Paradis, Treasurer


Geoff Smith, Director


Jason Sparaga, President


Karen St-Denis, Executive Director


Mayor John Tory, Honorary Chair

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