Since its inception in the fall of 2022, Dylan's House has been working to provide housing and caregiver grants for people with autism in the Mahoning Valley. 

The local non-profit held its second annual Fall Fundraiser at Ill Will Brewing Company in Columbiana on Thursday evening. 

The event featured a silent auction and a 50/50 raffle, with all funds raised going directly towards building homes for adults with autism transitioning out of their traditional family environment. Funds raised for the non-profit also support caregivers who provide essential care to adults with autism. 

"It's kind of unbelievable because it started as such a small little dream of us thinking, 'let's start a non-profit and help other families,' and just to see the Valley give back, we are always just overwhelmed," explained Amy Shope, Founder of Dylan's House.

"The response we've gotten the past year has been overwhelming and we are very grateful for the support," added Kevin Shope, Founder of Dylan's House.  

Kevin and Amy Shope named the non-profit after their 22-year-old son, Dylan who moved to his own home a few years back. They want their journey to inspire and give back to other families in similar situations. 

"We're just so excited to be able to help families in this area that really are living behind closed doors and almost locked in their homes that really no one is aware of," Amy added. "If we could help one family, we will be so excited."

Dylan's House recently assisted a local young adult with autism by upgrading the home he was planning to move to. The Shopes started a podcast in October called 'Welcome to Dylan's House.'

''You can find our podcast on our website, Spotify, Amazon Music, and iHeart radio," Kevin explained. "Our second episode comes out this weekend and it was really an opportunity for Amy and I to really tell the 'why' behind the non-profit. It is our goal to tell our family's story. Our son Dylan, growing up, navigating the autism world with some of the struggles we've had. We're very real and raw in the podcast and we don't hold anything back, hoping to give people an idea of what inspired us to start this non-profit."

Since the program's inception just last year, they've been able to raise $150,000 dollars, adding thousands more on Thursday at Ill Will Brewery's event.

The Dylan's House Fall Fundraiser's event sponsor was COMPCO Industries. Other sponsors included Grey Boutique, QUICKMed, Rainbow Restoration, City Tri Tower, Autism Society Mahoning Valley, Clothed in Strength, Progressive ABA, Sweet Melissa's, Rich Center for Autism and the Lehner Shope Wealth Group.  

To learn more, or to make a donation, visit the Dylan's House website