A boy with autism was returned safely to his family thanks to efforts of employees of DANI (Developing and Nurturing Independence), a Jewish organization that supports teenagers and young adults with special needs, according to an email from Toronto Police Service’s Const. Rui Simoes.
In the email, Simoes wrote that DANI employees Sarah Levinson and Ashley Orrett found the boy running in and out of traffic near Davenport and Walmer roads.
The two women, who were in the area with a group of DANI participants, called the police, and while responding officers were on the phone, Levinson headed to the boy to try to calm him down and help him, the email stated. She brought him to safety inside a nearby Tim Hortons while waiting for the police to arrive.
The boy was unable to tell them where he lived, and the police had not received a call regarding a missing boy, but Levinson and Orrett determined he was able to direct them to his house.
When police arrived, Orrett stayed with the DANI participants, while Levinson went with the boy to keep him calm as the police drove him home to reunite him with his father.
“It is without hesitation that I could say both Sarah and Ashley definitely made our job easier because of their willingness and desire to help people,” Simoes wrote.