MAHWAH, N.J. – Derek and Logan Thoelen do a lot together.
They play sports, share friends and work side by side.
Now the Mahwah brothers have something new to add to the list: raise and donate money for autism research.
Derek, who owns Mahwah-based Oasis Pool Service, decided his company would donate $10 for every pool it opened during the past season to an autism-related charity.
Which charity? That was up to Logan, who has autism.
Logan recently chose the Organization for Autism Research. The non-profit has funded more than $3.5 million in new autism research since 2002.
“It is really looking for advancements with the disability of autism," Derek said. "That is something that really means a lot to my younger brother."
Derek said a lot of the contractors and customers he works with have gotten to know Logan as he has performed maintenance vacuums, organized the construction yard and helped out the rest of the Oasis crew.
And some contractors have said they are interested in helping to generate funds and awareness for autism research too, Derek said.
Derek said this year the company made a “quality donation,” and he hopes with more people involved, an even larger amount can be given next year. His goal for next season is $5,000.
“If it would be something we could do every single year, I think it would be even better,” Derek said. “It would be a constant donation towards furthering the research for autism and hopefully coming up with some ways so that the people who suffer from autism can find themselves being able to feel like they are achieving everything that they want.”
Derek wanted to thank “everyone who used us for an opening this year” for helping the cause.
Oasis opened pools in New Jersey towns including: Mahwah; Ramsey; Allendale; Oakland; Franklin Lakes; Saddle River; Upper Saddle River; Montvale; Hillsdale; Old Tappan; River Vale; Glen Rock; Ridgewood; Ho-Ho-Kus; Wayne; Waldwick; North Haledon; Haledon; Wyckoff; Midland Park; Paramus; Alpine; and Cresskill.
The company opened pools in New York in: Monroe; New City; Montebello; Suffern; Airmont; and Stony Point.