Adults with autism are behind the success of Harry’s Buttons

Making buttonsWhen Harry Engnell Jr. graduated from high school in 1998, his parents found few supports available to help a young person with autism find work and make other transitions to adulthood.

Harry’s dad knew his son liked repetitive tasks, So he bought him equipment to start making buttons as a hobby. Harry Jr. loved making buttons, and so did many of his friends with autism. And thus, a business was born. From the Web site:

Our buttons are “hand-made” primarily by people with Autism at Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago Adult Vocational Programs.

Together we make beautiful 1 1/4″, 2 1/4″ and 3″ round buttons for any occasion, campaign, or promotion. Tell us what you’re looking for and we will custom make it for you, with pride.

Easter Seals micro-enterprise coordinator Kelly Anne Ohde oversees and can’t say enough about what Harry’s parents did to make this all happen for their son. “When they couldn’t find work that suited him, they created a solution,” Kelly says. “Now that solution is changing many lives.”

Learn more by visiting

Read Wendy Murphy’s biography.


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  14. Easter Seals and Autism » Blog Archive » An “adults with autism” success story on Chicago’s ABC 7 News Says:

    [...] had mentioned Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago in a story she did on ABC 7 News. Remember the post we published here about Harry’s Buttons? Well, Karen’s TV feature was about the company too. Button Company Employs Adults with Autism [...]

  15. Kelly Anne Ohde Says:

    Wow, Wendy! This is awesome! Thanks for thinking of at Easter Seals!

  16. Beth Finke, blog moderator Says:

    Yes, this is Wendy’s first blog post. We love hearing from her and are hoping to hear more from her here at the autism blog in the future. Thanks for commenting, Maurice — always good to hear from *you*, too!

  17. Maurice Snell Says:

    Wow, Wendy, that is a great blog post! I take it this is your first time publishing a blog for the Easter Seals website? Great!

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