May 9, 2023, Rockville, MD – The Autism Society of America and the HollyRod Foundation teamed up to read Holly Robinson Peete’s new children’s book Charlie Makes A Splash. This book highlights the wonderful benefits of water along with the undeniable need for services and education in the area of water safety, swimming, and wandering within the Autism community. 

At the Autism Society, we have prioritized the need to connect families to the services and resources to keep members of the Autism community safe. Through our Safety on the Spectrum program, we believe it is important to share the many benefits that water has on someone with Autism while also shedding light on the imperative need for safety surrounding aquatic environments.  

“We chose to highlight the water scenes featured in Charlie Makes A Splash in our social narrative which outlines key water safety rules in aquatic environments,” said Chris Banks, President and CEO of the Autism Society of America. “Through our Water and Wandering Program, we plan to increase water safety education and training across the Autism community to reduce water and wandering-related incidents.” 

Our upcoming Facebook video being published on Monday, May 22nd at 2:00 pm EST highlights the importance of water safety within the Autism community. Holly Robinson Peete of the HollyRod Foundation reads her new children’s book Charlie Makes and Splash during this episode. Christopher Banks joins in this discussion and shares water safety resources with viewers and how they can access these materials. 

Autism Society Water Safety Program

The Autism Society of America seeks to develop an adaptive aquatics curriculum that aims to support instructors and the Autism community nationwide. The Autism Society’s water and wandering initiative focuses on proactive programming, prevention, and improved responses to wandering incidents. The water and wandering initiative is a national effort to increase water safety education and training across the Autism community in order to decrease the tragic loss of life caused by water and wandering-related accidents.  This program works to not only prevent wandering-related tragedies but to increase water safety skills among Autistic children, teens, and adults- and those who support them.

Looking for more information on water safety and preparing your child with Autism for swimming lessons? Check out our Water Safety Checklist and Water Social Story for tips and guidance.

To learn more about the Autism Society’s national programs and ways to get involved, please email


Autism Society of America

The Autism Society’s mission is to create connections, empowering everyone in the Autism community with the resources needed to live fully. As the nation’s oldest leading grassroots Autism organization, the Autism Society and its approximately 70+ local affiliates serve over half a million members of the Autism community each year. It envisions a world where everyone in the Autism community is connected to the support they need, when they need it – including education, advocacy efforts, and supports and services throughout the lifespan. For more information, go to, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.


HollyRod Foundation

Founded in 1993 by actress, Holly Robinson Peete and her husband, former NFL player, Rodney Peete, the HollyRod Foundation is a recognized California based 501c3. The HollyRod Foundation is dedicated to raising awareness and providing resources to families that have a loved one who has received an Autism or Parkinson’s Disease diagnosis. We advocate for ethical treatment, inclusion, and access to services and treatment of individuals living with Autism or Parkinson’s Disease with the goal of empowering them to live their best lives.