By Tony Lopez

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — John Almeda’s world has opened up and we’ve been proud to be along for his journey.

As we first told you last summer, the 22-year-old Sacramento man with non-verbal Autism began running as a way to release anxiety. He even started his own Running Club for kids and adults with developmental disabilities. The group has grown from one to more than two dozen. They meet every week at Sacramento’s McKinley Park.

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John’s Mom, Vanessa, tells CBS13 others have found freedom in running, thanks to the club. “These kids come out and they want to try it and they’re unsure–and after one lap–you just see the anxiety is gone–they’re confident–they’re high-fiving each other.”

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But John’s journey has reached new levels because of what running has done for him. He now makes jewelry with friends and has started offering yard work services. Perhaps the most rewarding job, though, is his dedication to helping feed his friend, Tony. Tony is a quadriplegic who needs help eating.

John’s heart and life now overflow, thanks in large part, to what running has done. He now tries to give to others what he’s achieved: a life fulfilled.

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To learn more about John and his mother, Vanessa’s non-profit group dedicated to helping people with Autism find employment and social events to improve their lives, go here.