BUFFALO, N.Y. — Squeaky Wheel Film & Media Art Center will now be able to offer their Digital Arts and Technology Access (DATA) program for a second year, after their pilot of the program successfully attracted a $11,000 grant to subsidize costs. 

Squeaky Wheel has always been about three things: exhibitions, equipment access and education. Since 1985, people have been able to go to Squeaky Wheel to learn how they can make art, including many teens who may not have access at home. 

Kevin Kline, the director of education for Squeaky Wheel, says that in recent years, they've noticed a fair amount of parents of teens with autism reaching out, and wondering if their educational programs would be well suited for their child. 

"The parents would always come, kind of apologetically, 'Can I have my child in this program?' And it was never really an issue, but they were always kind of cautious about, 'Will it be successful? Will it be a safe environment?' Stuff life that," Kline said.

This was the spark for DATA, which offers weekly workshops, as well as a summer program for 13 to 19-year-old teens on the spectrum. They have the opportunity to learn sound engineering, animation or movie production during the spring workshops.

The registration fee for this year's spring program is only $50, as Doug Flutie, Jr. Foundation grant allowed them to subsidize the costs. Workshops run from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays at The Buffalo Center for Arts & Technology (1221 Main Street, Buffalo).

The summer program will be hosted at Villa Maria College (240 Pine Ridge Road, Buffalo) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. August 17 through 21. The registration fee is $100.

The program was developed with help from the The Children's Guild Foundation Autism Spectrum Disorder Center at John R. Oishei Children's Hospital.

For more information, to register or donate to the program, you can visit squeaky.org.

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