Mother uses salsa to give autistic son a life skill

Stephanie Lay taught her son, Bryce, how to cook grilled salsa to help him over come his autism. Now they have over 100 orders of people wanting some.

WINDHAM, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- A mother in Windham is hoping to give her 14-year-old son a boost in life. Stephanie Lay knows the hardship of raising a child with Autism, but would you have guessed that Grilled Salsa may be the solution to many of her worries.

Lay's son Bryce was diagnosed with autism at 2-years-old. He started banging his head, sometimes putting holes into walls, three years into his diagnoses. After some time of trying to find something that would calm Bryce down and give him a life skill, Lay found that cooking was one of his favorite things to take part in.

"I posted on Facebook a picture of our grilled salsa and within two weeks I had 109 orders, a patent attorney involved a food scientist involved," said Lay.

When their salsa hit the fast track the pair needed to find a place to sell it and that's when they went to the Hannaford in Falmouth. That's where store manager, Doug Mercier, agreed to put the product called Maine Tex Grilled Salsa on the shelves once it's ready for retail. Not just because of its taste, but also because of his niece who has autism.

"To me it's a great type of avenue for those types of folks to get into the work force and show what they're made of because I know my niece would be fantastic at it," said Mercier.

Stephanie's plan is to donate a majority of the proceeds towards The Special Foundation that she started seven years ago to give assistance to families affected by autism. Giving other kids who know what it's like to struggle with everyday tasks the opportunity to learn their own skill.

There's a Kick Starter fund that's been started to help with start up costs of Maine Tex Grilled Salsa that you can donate to at kickstarter.com.


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