Why NJCTS is My “Safe Place”

Armani and Ivana

My name is Armani Coronado. I am a student at Harmony Township Elementary School in 6th Grade. My favorite subjects are Math, Science and Social Studies. I am in Advanced Band and Robotics Club. Some things I enjoy are reading, art, playing Roblox, riding my quad, going on the tractor to look for chestnuts, playing the piano, and doing activities with my big sister Ivana. In many ways, I am a typical 11-year-old boy. I just happen to have Tourette Syndrome.

I was diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome, or TS, in the Fall of 2019. I was in 2nd grade and seven years old. When I got diagnosed, my mom started researching TS online and that’s how she found NJCTS. My parents called and found out NJCTS could do a presentation for all my teachers and school staff and they would also come talk to my classmates. NJCTS explained to my teachers what TS was and that was really helpful because they understood me better.

What was truly amazing for me was when Sam Regen (an NJCTS Youth Advocate) taught my classmates about TS and why it was wrong to bully kids that were different. Ever since NJCTS came to my school, I felt connected with everyone, everywhere, and new doors had opened up for me but little did I know there were still many, many more doors to be opened. So NJCTS came to my elementary school EVERY year to do a presentation!

Armani with Sam Regen

This September I moved to a new school. I was very excited but also very nervous because I was thinking I would get bullied by my new classmates and misunderstood by school staff. Once again, NJCTS came to the rescue. They did a presentation for my new teachers and set up another Youth Advocate presentation with Sam for 6th, 7th, and 8th graders. (One day I hope to be a Youth Advocate too!) Thanks to NJCTS my experience in this new school has been a positive one.

Armani at Camp FantasTIC

NJCTS also has a super fun camp called Camp FantasTIC. My sister and I like camp because there are lots of FUN activities like laser tag, swimming, nature center exploration, nature walks, campfire s’mores with singalongs, sports, and crafting activities. I get to meet many other kids with TS just like me! I feel comfortable and safe when I am there. My parents also enjoy camp because they get to talk to other parents with children who have TS and they learn new things at workshops and panel meetings led by doctors and experts of TS.

Lastly, my family and I got to be part of a series of videos to promote the impact NJCTS has on families. We shared our story and journey. I hope this video can help many other families learn that there is so much support that NJCTS can provide. I am very thankful and lucky that NJCTS was there for me.

I hope that you will consider making a donation to support NJCTS so they can continue to help many other families just like they helped me!

Thank you!


All funds raised from our year-end appeal benefit the programs of NJCTS that advance our mission to  ensure children and adults with Tourette Syndrome and associated disorders are empowered and accepted through education, advocacy and research.

New Jersey Center for Tourette Syndrome and Associated Disorders, Inc. is an exempt organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, EIN #26-1388409. Consult with your tax adviser as contributions and sponsorships may be tax deductible.