Lindt Gold Bunny

A little chocolate bunny could have a huge impact this Easter.

Chocolatier Lindt USA says it is continuing its partnership with the non-profit organization Autism Speaks,with plans to raise funds and awareness for autism during the upcoming Easter season.

For every Lindt Gold Bunny purchased through Easter, April 5, Lindt will donate 10 cents to Autism Speaks (up to $100,000). Consumers can also contribute by bidding on porcelain versions of the iconic Lindt GOLD BUNNY figures autographed by top celebrities in the sixth annual Lindt GOLD BUNNY Celebrity Auction, in which one hundred percent of the auction proceeds will benefit Autism Speaks.

All of the money raised supports individuals with autism and their families through a variety of ways, including educational toolkits for newly diagnosed families, grants for community programs, and scholarship funding to educational institutions, among many others.

"With the support from Lindt fans and the help of our iconic Lindt Gold Bunny, we continue to generate funds and awareness for the autism community," said Thomas Linemayr, president and ceo of Lindt USA. "We are honored to work with Autism Speaks for a seventh year as we celebrate a joyous Easter season and help the organization assist individuals with autism."

Over the past seven years, Lindt has donated more than $700,000 to Autism Speaks.

"Today, autism affects one in 68 children along with countless family and friends," said Alec Elbert, chief strategy and development officer of Autism Speaks. "As our organization looks to improve the lives of those with autism through advocacy and awareness-driving efforts, we are very appreciative of Lindt for its continued support through the Lindt Gold Bunny giveback program and celebrity auction."

Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders — autism spectrum disorders — caused by a combination of genes and environmental influences. These disorders are characterized, to varying degrees, by repetitive behaviors and difficulties with verbal and nonverbal communication, as well as social interaction.