KACIE GOODE/The Kentucky Standard
Asking Kaden to share his cookies — his favorite treat and only solid food he will eat — his Aunt Renee get's a smile out from the autistic teen.
Spectrum: Affected by autism

Joe bounces on a large, gray exercise ball while his mother rests in the chair. There are few things Joe loves more than bouncing with that ball and at 25 years old, it is an activity that calms the severely autistic young man.

Joe is 25 and nonverbal. He depends on his mother to complete daily tasks.

Kaden is 14, takes functional mental disability classes at Shelby County High School and is nonverbal, but has progressed with personalized attention from his 22-year-old aunt.