Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Autism Understanding & Acceptance 2014 Day 10: Where to get help

 It is becoming quite apparent that you all know more than one child on the autism spectrum, and bless you all, you want to help.  Thank you.  I just had another friend ask me for help, and I think that sharing the answer in general terms here for everyone will be beneficial.  (And by the way, I love helping and I love answering questions, so keep them coming!)

The question was essentially: how do I find help for myself (or my friend, co-worker, etc) when there appears to be nothing in the way of support in my state/area?

My answer: get connected with an organization that can help navigate this crazy, complicated world of autism and special needs support.  You are going to need help locally in a "boots on the ground" sort of way, so it is going to be important to find local or state-specific help if it is available.  My hope is that you will be able to find a parent liaison that can direct you to your state's specific programs.

There are several national organizations that have state and/or local affiliates that can be extremely helpful.  The organization for which I've worked for the past six years, About Special Kids ( connects, educates and empowers families of children with special needs by directing them to the resources, programs & supports that are available.  If you need help for a child in Indiana, visit our website and call us.  Seriously.  

About Special Kids, or ASK, is part of a nationwide network called Parent to Parent USA (  If you live outside Indiana, visit this website to see if there is a Parent to Parent member in your state:

Family Voices is another nationwide network:

ASK and other Parent to Parent members, as well as Family Voices, are not disability-specific organizations.  You can call for help with any diagnosis for any child.

For developmental disabilities, The Arc is another nationwide organization that can assist:

Now onto autism-specific organizations that most likely  have a state or local affiliate:

Autism Society of America

Autism Speaks

You can't be an expert on everything overnight.  That's why organizations like these exist.  Call or contact one of these organizations through their website.  There IS help out there.

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