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  • ADA Distance Learning Sessions SAVE the DATE
    The Bureau of Accessibility and Job Accommodation (BAJA) and the Illinois ADA Project are inviting interested persons to participate in a training session concerning issues on the Americans with Disabilities Act. The Illinois ADA Project is a steering committee of the DBTAC: Great Lakes ADA Center of which DHS serves as a member organization.
    When: Call for future dates and programs being offered.
     
  • "The ADA In Your Community" Survey
    How do people with disabilities rate their community's implementation of the Americans with Disabilities Act? To find out this answer, The Illinois ADA Project, in conjunction with the DBTAC: Great Lakes ADA Center is conducting a survey. People with disabilities, their family members, and their advocates are invited to complete the ADA survey so your voices are heard when accessibility issues are being addressed in your communities. Print copies and alternative formats are available upon request. To request the ADA survey in an alternative format, or for additional information, contact Alan Goldstein at (312) 341-0022 or alan@equipforequality.org.
     
  • Advocate Lutheran General Children's Hospital
    Sibsensations
    Program for Brothers and Sisters of Children with Special Needs
    Kathryn Smart, MS, RN
    Where: Yacktman Children's Pavilion
    1675 Dempster St., Room Y2109, second floor
    Park Ridge, IL 60068
    (847) 723-9484
    Cook County
    email: kathryn.smart@advocatehealth.com
    "Sibsensations" is a program for brothers and sisters of children with developmental and physical disabilities and selected chronic illnesses. Children meet peers with similar experiences in a fun and friendly atmosphere, where they can discuss their common joys and concerns. They learn how to handle situations they all face regularly and discuss the implications of having a brother or sister with special needs. Offers recreational and educational experiences in a supportive setting (e.g. games, activities, crafts, and age-appropriate discussion). Parents are welcome to visit the Children's Health Resource Center, located adjacent to their meeting room.
    When: call for upcoming dates.
    Ages: 8 to 15.
    Cost: $10 (for each session); $5 (for each additional family member).
    No wait list. Registration is required.
     
  • Alexian Brothers Health System
    Autism Round Table Discussion 
    1650 Moon Lake Blvd., Room 1205
    Hoffman Estates, IL 60169
    The Autism Round Table Dsicussion is intended to provide professionals in the community educational information about Autism Spectrum Disorders as well as opportunities to meet and connect.  Each month we invite a different speaker to talk and address a variety of issues specific to this population, including diagnosis and treatment, future planning, behavioral therapy, government benefits, and more topics of interest.
    When: Call for upcoming events.
    Contact: Ana Garcia (847) 755-8536
    email: ana.garcia@alexian.net 
    Cost: Free for professionals in the community.
    One CEU/CPDU provided for attendance
     
  • The ARC of Illinois 12th annual QUDP Leadership Conference
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Where: Doubletree Hotel, Alsip, IL
    We have another outstanding lineup of presenters for this important conference featuring Peter Leidy. Peter has been learning from people with disabilities since 1983 and has had many roles including direct support and community building to name a few. 
     
  • The Arts of Life
    Guy's Marathon Fundraiser
    Guy Conners, The Arts of Life resident marathoner, is at it again!
    Guy is an artist with autism and will be running to raise money for The Arts of Life at the 6th Annual Christie Clinic Illinois Marathon on Saturday April 26 in Champaign, Illinois.
    For more information and to support Guy Conners please click on the link above.
     
  • ASI Casino Night, Raise the Stakes to Bring Awareness to Autism
    When:
    Call for upcoming events or
    email:  libby@autismillinios.org or call (888) 691-1270 for information
     
  • Autism Home Support Services, Inc. presents:
    Practical Behavior Supports Workshop
    Presenter: Marrea Winnega, PhD, BCBA
    Where: Northern Illinois University - Naperville Campus
    1120 E. Diehl Road
    Naperville, IL 60563
    In this workshop, effective strategies to change a student's behavior that are humane and practical in an educational setting will be described. Time will be provided to brainstorm your student's behaviors with presenters. Participants will leave with the beginnings of an action plan for intervening on behaviors.
    When: Friday, April 25, 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
    To register: call (847) 564-0822 or email JMcCulloch@AutismHomeSupport.com
     
  • Autism NOW Webinar: Transportation Options and Accommodations for Individuals with Disabilities
    When: Call for future dates.
    Speakers: Amy Goodman, Autism NOW, Krystian Boreyko, Easter Seals
    Krystian Boreyko of Easter Seals Project ACTION joins co-director Amy Goodman for this webinar to discuss the various transportation options that are available to individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities! Presenters will discuss regulations that protect the rights of people with disabilities including the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Air Carrier Access Act; accommodations that are offered to individuals who use public transportation, aircrafts and other modes of transportation; issues regarding touch and personal space; the process of obtaining a driver’s license and more. Learn more
     
  • AutismOne Conference
    When:
    May 21-25, 2014
    Where: Intercontinental O’Hare,
    Rosemont IL
    Multiple tracks of world-class education
    • Five days filled with life-changing information
    • Full-day cooking workshop and half-day fermentation workshop
    • Half-day hyperbaric oxygen workshop
    • Full-day CME training for medical professionals
    • Fun evening special events
    • 100+ leading scientists, doctors, and experts 
    Click on the link above for registration.
     
  • The Autism Program of Illinois (TAP)
    The autism program is looking for parent advisors. Advisors must be a caregiver of a child with autism spectrum disorder who had either been diagnosed or is awaiting a diagnosis; must be receiving services from a TAP center, which could include visits to one of the TAP resource rooms; and is willing to learn about advocacy for evidence based practices in regards to ASD. Advisors will receive training. To sign up for this program, please contact Dwight Robinson at (312) 285-3347 or e-mail: drobinson@thehopeinstitue.us.
     
  • The Autism Program (TAP) Service Center - Rockford
    presents
    :
    Autism Spectrum Disorder Overview Basics of Behavior
    Contact:
    Megan Herbig to register or for more information
    (815) 395-5561 or mherbig@eastersealschicago.org
    Where: The Autism Program Service Center-Rockford
    (University of Illinois-Health Sciences Campus)
    1601 Parkview Ave., Room S235
    Rockford, IL 61107
    (815) 395-5566
    Winnebago County
    Lori Davie, assistant manager of the program, has been employed by Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago for 10 years and has been involved in many roles during employment. Lori is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Healthcare Administration and Child Development with an expectant graduation in 2014. She is an Illinois Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics Training and Program Consultant and Faculty of the Enhancing Developmentally Oriented Primary Care (EDOPC) project. Lori has both professional and personal expertise in understanding and working with families of children with special needs. Lori’s primary role is to synchronize the clinical services, trainings and community outreach, and coach parents of children diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) on a wide range of topics including coordinating relationships with providers. In addition, her primary responsibility is supporting The Autism Program (TAP) Service Center - Rockford team.
    Who: Parents and Professionals
    When: Wednesday, April 30, 6-8 p.m.
    Check in at 5:45 p.m.
    Cost: Parents: FREE, Professionals $20 check payable to Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago.("TAP Rockford") in the memo line.
    Register Early Space is Limited
    Participants of this training will:
    - Acquire an understanding of the growing diagnosis of Autism  Spectrum Disorders (ASD).
    - Recognize the physiological characteristics that ASD may present and how they are often misinterpreted as adverse, negative behaviors.
    - Develop an understanding of basic behavioral theory.
       
  • Autism/Special Needs Conference
    When: Call for future dates.
    Contact: Tony Hiles at tony@asnioa.com
     
  • A Big Blast, Gymnastics for Special Kids
    (847) 650-8161
    One to one ratio and small group gymnastics and cheerleading classes taught by licensed therapists. 
    six locations: Countryside, Elk Grove, Highland Park, Lake Forest and Mundelein.
     
  • Breaking the Silence 5: A Benefit for Autism Awareness Fundraiser
    When: Call for future dates.
    Breaking The Silence is an annual concert founded by drummer, Ron Thomas of Chicago's up and coming rock band, Veilside. After years of struggle with their own son's diagnosis of autism, Ron and his wife Jean, composed the idea of having a fund raising event to benefit one of the various supportive non-for-profit organizations within the state of Illinois.
    All funds collected are donated to the Autism Society of Illinois.
    Where: Durty Nellie's, 180 North Smith St., Palatine, IL 60067
    Contact: Jean Thomas; email: jean@autismillinois.org
    Visit website for more information.
     
  • CafeMom
    The largest online community for women created for parents of autistic children. In addition to the typical symptoms, treatments, and advice most guides have, they are interviewing parents of autistic children to get their real world stories in an effort to help parents who are just finding out about the ups and downs of parenting an autistic child.
     
  • Camp Big Blast
    The Gym Spot
    915 Tower Road
    Mundelein, IL 60060-3811
    (847) 987-3940
    email: info@abigblast.com
    Keep the kids happy and active with gymnastics, games, arts & crafts, sports, science projects, story time, yoga and lots fun, fun and more fun.
    Ages: 3 and up; siblings welcome.
    Cost: $200 entire two-week session.
     
  • Chicago Commons
    Where: Guadalupano Family Center
    1814 S. Paulina St.
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (773) 722-0115
    Contact: Felicia Martinez to confirm your participation.
    When: call for upcoming events.
    Chicago Commons is a non-for-profit agency that provides Head Start Childcare services for three communities.  The bi-annual Parent Training Forum provides resources to 80-100 families.  
     
  • Chicagoland Autism Connection
    Chicagoland Autism Connection presents: 15th Annual Spring Fling for Autism Awareness Resource Fair
    Contact: Paul Butler at (773) 329-0375 or email pebutler@chicagoautism.org
    Where: William J. Bogan
    Computer Tech High School
    3939 West 79th Street, Chicago, IL
    When: Saturday, April 5, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
    The April Spring Fling provides valuable information to families of individuals with autism, professionals who work with them, and members of the general public. This year's event features nine breakout sessions - six in English and three in Spanish - on a variety of autism-related topics, exhibitor tables, and opportunities for networking. The Spring Fling, as always, is a free event, with workshops conducted by experts from diverse areas of work with autism. Our goal each year has been to provide a wealth of information and resources to families, teachers (FREE CPDU credits available), and other professionals.
    Cost: free event.
    Please register at: www.chicagoautism.org
     
  • The Child and Family Law Center of the North Shore Webinar Series presents:
    Extended School Year: The Law and the Reality

    Presented by: Micki Moran of the Child and Family Law Center This webinar is designed to answer your questions about Extended School year (ESY) and will include a discussion of: case law and other relevant issues; regression/recoupment; questions and answers
    When: Call for upcoming events.
    Cost: free webinar
    For more information about the webinar, please call Karen Royko at 847-926-0101 or email karenr@lawforchild.com
     
  • Cougars Cupcakes for Autism
    When: Call for upcoming events.
    Join us for an incredible event to raise money for Conant High School Special Olympics, Cougars In Need, Local Autism Support Groups, and resource agencies by eating cupcakes!
    Entry is free, cupcakes are $2 or a dozen for $20. (There will be drinks available). Free kids entertainment including face painting!
    Where: Conant High School
    700 East Cougar Trail
    Hoffman Estates, IL 60169
    email: Lauren Lombardo LLombardo@d211.org Jo
      
  • Disability Scoop
    Disability Scoop is nationally focused online news organization serving the developmental disability community including autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, fragile X and intellectual disability, among others. Website provides the latest developmental disability news and original reporting on hot-button issues like behavior, medication, IEPs and more that impact the daily lives of people with developmental disabilities and those around them.
     
  • Dispute Resolution: Free IDEA Class
    When: Call for upcoming events.
    This one hour phone training will cover information about options for resolving disputes related to special education; dispute resolution options available to parents and schools; how to prepare for and participate in informal meetings.
    For more information, call the Family Resource Center on Disabilities at (312) 939-3513
     
  • Easter Seals Therapeutic School and Center for Autism Research - What's New? Listening Project Clinic
    Contact: Kimberly McCue
    1939 W. 13th St., Suite 203
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (312) 491-4134
    Cook County
    email: kimberly.mccue@eastersealschicago.org
    Provides a research-based intervention known as the listening project protocol (based on the polyvagal theory developed by Porges). It is designed to exercise processes involved in listening to human voice that may improve social communication by reducing hearing sensitivities and improving auditory processing. The intervention requires listening to music and stories that have been computer modified to exercise the nerves and muscles that help people listen to human voice, while dampening the distracting effects of background sounds. Based on preliminary research, the intervention best serves individuals with or with a history of auditory hypersensitivities. Involves five consecutive days, one to one and a half hours per day and optional research assessments.
    Insurance not accepted.
    Cost: $750. One time fee-for-service to be paid at initial visit.
    No wait list.
     
  • Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago Autism Therapeutic School
    The New Diagnosis Family Orientation
    1939 W. 13th St.
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (312) 564-4060
    Cook County
    Program is designed to assist parents and family members in understanding autism spectrum disorders. It provides an opportunity for families to ask questions about this developmental disability and to meet other families who are on the same journey. Topics covered: introduction to autism spectrum disorders, research-supported interventions and available resources.
    When: call for upcoming events.
  • Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago-Rockford Regional Office Family Support Services
    When: Thursday May 15, 6:30-9:00 P.M.
    Finding Support in the Educational Rights Guide
    will be presented by Rhonda Best from Family Matters. At this FREE workshop you will learn to find answers to questions about special education rights and responsibilities by exploring each chapter of the ISBE guide. Common questions, concerns, and problems experienced by parents will be given and participants will locate the appropriate section of the guide to find answers, supporting information and solutions. A copy of the guide will be provided to workshop participants. The training will be held at the Belvidere Park District, 1006 W. Lincoln Ave. in Belvidere. (enter lower level in back by playground) Light refreshments and childcare will be provided.
    Registration is required by calling Patti at 815-965-5069 x 1221 or email at: pmook@eastersealschicago.org

    When: Saturday May 17, 1:00 P.M.
    Join Family Support Services and the Chicago Rockford International Airport for a guided tour of the facility. This is a great opportunity to prepare your child with a disability for a trip. The inside tour will start with what to expect at check in, what is required for identification, luggage, what and what not to pack and what happens to it when it goes on the belt. You will learn what the TSA is and who they are (dress, being able to identify a TSA agent), what they look for in luggage and what they do when checking it. We will go to the actual TSA security checkpoint and explain what the TSA agent will do and how they check for prohibited items. After security, we will go to the gate area and explain about waiting for the plane, what to expect, how the pilot knows how and where to stop the plane, and how to get on/off the plane. The outside tour is by bus (which is wheelchair accessible) and will travel around the airfield making stops at the Fire Station and the Lifeline Helicopter.
    Registration is required and limited to 60 people. For more information or to register, call Patti at 815-965-5069 x 1221 or email at: pmook@eastersealschicago.org

    SAVE THE DATE October 17-19, 2014: “Retreat Yourself” 6th Annual Mom’s Retreat Weekend at Bishop Lane Retreat Center
     
  • Emergency Contact Update for Illinois Driver's License
    The state of Illinois is offering a new service connected to your driver's license. Click on this link and add two emergency contacts to your license data. Therefore, if you are incapacitated in some way, your license can be scanned and the emergency contacts retrieved so your loved ones can be contacted. It only takes two minutes to complete. Take advantage of this new service.
     
  • Family Matters Presents: Keeping It Positive-Meeting Behavior Needs in the IEP
    Presenter: Tiffany Leischner
    Where: Bourbonnais Public Library
    250 E. John Casey Road
    Bourbonnais, IL 60914
    Participants will learn at workshop how behaviors should be assessed; how to deveolop positive behavior goals for students; and what should be included in a behavior intervention and support plan.
    When: call for future events.
    To register, call (866) 436-7842, ext. 107.
     
  • 4th Annual Community Resource Fair
    Where
    : Giant Steps Illinois, Inc.
    2500 Cabot Drive
    Lisle, IL 60532
    When: Call for upcoming events.
    This event is intended for parents, educators, community members, and those interested in learning more about resources available in the Chicagoland area for students and families impacted by Autism. As in previous years, the fair will host a variety of speakers and vendors who will provide attendees with information on their services/products.
    Cost: The event is free and guests are welcome to stop in at any point.
    For more information, contact Holly Lechniak, MSW, LCSW at hlechniak@mygiantsteps.org
     
  • FuntasticGymnastic
    Patricia Ostrow, (414) 254-2291
    Kelly Donley, (224) 515-9060
    Locations served include: Western and Northern Chicago suburbs as well as Milwaukee area.
    (414) 254-2291
    email: funtasticgymnastic@yahoo.com
    Provides one-on-one instruction for special needs children using gymnastics as a means to enhance the therapeutic experience. Classes are 30-45 minutes in length depending on the skill of your child. The goal is to graduate each child into the small group sessions. Instruction is provided from licensed therapists including occupational, physical, speech, and the aid of one or more assistants. They use balance beams, trampolines, springboards, tumbling exercises, pummel horse and swings.
    Ages: 2-21.
    Cost: all sessions are insurance eligible; public insurance not accepted.
    No wait list. 
     
  • Third Annual Giant Steps Autism Community Resource Fair
    When: Calll for upcoming events.
    Where: Giant Steps, 2500 Cabot Drive, Lisle, IL 60532
    Resource fair is free and open to public. For parents, educators, community members, and those interested in learning more about resources available in the Chicagoland area for students and families impacted by autism.
    Contact Holly Lechniak Giant Steps at 630.864.3855 or email: hlechniak@mygiantsteps.org or visit their website www.mygiantsteps.org
     
  • 2013 Great Lakes Regional Games and Adult National Championships
    Hosted by Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association (GLASA)
    Contact: Nicole Nerneuille, CTRS, program director
    Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association
    400 East Illinois Road
    Lake Forest, IL 60045
    (8470 989-7743 (cell) or (847) 283-0908
    email: nverneuille@glasa.org
    The games will provide three days of competion, to include swimming, track, field, archery, boccia, table tennis, power lifting, and handcycling.
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
     
  • Grupo SALTO Annual Fundraiser
    When: Call for upcoming events.
    Where: WishingWell-Concodia Banquet Halls 5838 W. 26th St Cicero, IL 60804. For tickets and information call Jose Ovalle (708) 770-1401 or Luz Maria Limon (773) 574-3868
    Donation: $50
     
  • Have Dreams
    REDI Retail Program Open House
    2020 Dempster St.
    Evanston, IL 60202
    When: call for more information.
    For transition staff, parents, and other professionals
    Overview of our new retail training course
    Visit our on-site Walgreens Training Store
    In partnership with Walgreens Corp., Have Dreams is proud to announce a new retail training course designed to increase employment opportunities!
    Ages: teens and young adults with autism or other developmental disabilities.
    Our nine-week REDI training is designed to teach retail competencies, as well as the social and communication skills necessary for success in a variety of employment settings: retail vocabulary and concepts; organizing store merchandise; customer service; communications skills; teamwork; and getting the work done. This course meets two sessions per week (2½ hours each) for nine weeks.
    Cost: $900
    Space is limited.
    Contact: Tom Dempsey, Have Dreams (847) 905-0702 x 229
    email: tdempsey@havedreams.org to enroll, or to attend the Open House Event.
     
  • Health Care for America Now (HCAN), a major campaign of Citizen Action/Illinois is a national grassroots effort of hundreds of organizations and millions of people dedicated to winning qualify, affordable health care. It is up to us to make sure Congress acts this year.
     
  • Health Matters 4 Kids Health Fair
    Where: Access Living
    Contact: Parul Arora
    115 West Chicago Ave.
    Chicago, IL 60654
    (847) 731-5719
    email: hm4kidsinfo@northpointeresources.org
    Cook County
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Children and adolescents are welcome with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) and their families, educators, and health care providers to learn about the benefits of food, fun and play. Interactive workshops will also be available to build your health profile. Free CEUs/CPDUs available for those who qualify.
     
  • 9th Annual Night of Hope Gala - The Hope Institute
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Where: Marriott Downtown Chicago
    Annual gala features an extraordinary evening of fine food, dancing, live entertainment, and live and silent auctions – benefiting the children of the Hope Institute
    Cost: $200 (per ticket)
    More information
       
  • Illinois Bureau of Early Intervention
    Department of Human Services
    401 S. Clinton St.
    Chicago, IL 60607
    (800) 447-6404
    Cook County
    Infants and toddlers, ages birth to three years, are tested for delays in movement, learning, and behavior self-help skills. Use the Department of Human Services office locator online to find the early intervention office in your area or call. For automated service, call (800) 323-GROW.
     
  • Illinois Department of Human Service Offices and Service Providers
    Looking for Early Intervention services? See link for office locations in your area that provide assessments for children ages birth to three years for developmental delays.
     
  • Illinois Department of Insurance
    Many families report to us (and we experience it too!) that it is difficult or impossible to obtain insurance coverage for the various treatment interventions available to support their children’s needs. In Illinois, there is a law requiring that certain evidence-based treatments for autism spectrum disorders be covered, but all the loopholes make a tangled mess, indeed. Check out this link for more information.
     
  • Illinois General Assembly
    Copy of Illinois' bills and resolutions (2009-2010).
     
  • Illinois Includes presents: Inclusion Conference
    Where: Chicago Marriott Oak Brook
    1401 West 22nd St.
    Oak Brook, IL
    (773) 766-7461
    email: info@illinoisincludes.org 
    If you are a parent of a child with a disability seeking a more inclusive educational experience for your child, or an advocate who wants to experience more inclusion in your own life or in the lives of others you support, or a general education teacher needing more information and inspiration when it comes to differentiating instruction, supporting diverse learners in the inclusive classroom, and challenging all students appropriately, then this conference is for you.
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Fee for professionals: $250 (for 2 days); $140 (for 1 day)
    Fee for parents/self advocates: $175 (for 2 days); $98 (for 1 day).
     
  • Illinois Insurance Facts
    Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
    Insurance Coverage for Autism
     
  • Illinois Main Street Alliance, a project of Citizen Action/Illinois, is a coalition of more than 500 Illinois small businesses fighting for better health care options, including a public plan that will enable more small businesses to offer coverage to their employees.
     
  • Illinois Yellow Pages for Kids with Disabilities
    Provides reliable information and support.
    State Yellow Pages: Provides many useful resources, evaluators, educational consultants, academic tutors, support groups, grassroots organizations, advocates, attorneys and others who help parents get services for their children.
     
  • iPad Training to Aid Communication and Vocational Independence
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Where: 1601 Parkview Ave., Rockford, IL 61103. Room E120
    Cost: $30.00 checks made payable to ESMC and write TAP Rockford in the memo line.
    10 a.m.-noon: Basic Overview of iPad and Strategies for Adaptations to meet Individual Needs
    noon-12:30 p.m.: lunch break
    12:30-3:30 p.m.: Overview of Apps for Communication, Visual Supports and Vocational Independence
    Credits: 5 CPDUs and EI Credits pending approval
    Contact: Emily Lang at emily.lang@eastersealschicago.org
      
  • Lake County Health Department
    Behavioral Health Services

    Contact: Ted Testa, director
    2645 Washington St.
    Waukegan, IL 60085
    (847) 377-8180
    Lake County
    Government website that assists family finding the following resources in the Lake County area: AllKids, behavioral health services, child and adolescent behavioral health services (CABS), Child and Family Connections, child care nurse consultant, community dietitian, community health assessment and services (now a part of Population Health Services), community support services, Crisis Care Program (CCP), dental services, Early Intervention, family case management (see public health nursing), family planning, immunizations, outpatient mental health services, primary care services, Psychosocial Rehabilitation Program (PRP) and vocational services.
     
  • Legislator Lookup (to get your legislator's information) 
     
  • Little Friends Center for Autism, Inc.
    *** They are offering evaluations and re-evaluations and therapy for families in need. They are aware that many families who have children with autism have excessive bills, inadequate insurace coverage and in the economy have lost jobs. If you are interested in learning abuot applying for our subsidized services, contact us at: (630) 305-4196. Their evaluations are comprehensive and completed by a team of experts, including a psychologist, occupational therapist and speech therapist that specialize in autism. The evaluation will provide testing for autism, a cognitive assessment that will define the child's strengths, weaknesses and how they learn. Also, extensive recommendations will be provided in areas such as communication, behavior and socialization for the home, school and community.***
  • Lose the Training Wheels
    Contact: Jordan McDonald
    email: jordanmcdonald@rockfordparkdistrict.org
    Where: Indoor Sports Center
    8800 E. Riverside Blvd.
    Loves Park, IL  61111-5713
    (815) 987-1609
    Winnebago County
    This program works with youth and teens with disabilities who experience difficulty in getting past training wheels and on to conventional two-wheeled bikes. Lose the Training Wheels staff, in collaboration with Park District staff and volunteers, will assist each rider as they progress through a series of adapted bicycles toward their ultimate goal of losing their training wheels. Riders must have the ability to ride a bicycle with training wheels, and must attend each day, as skills will be built progressively throughout the week. Bring your own biking helmet all week, and on Thursday we ask that you bring your own bike from home so the trained Lose the Training Wheels staff can make sure the bike is appropriate for learning, and make small adjustments for the individual. Register for your preference of an a.m. or p.m. session; once registration closes and individual skill assessments are completed each family will be assigned their 75-minute session time for the week.
    Ages: 8-21.
    Cost: residents:$65; non-residents: $95.
    Financial assistance is available. Contact Customer Service for more details (815) 987-8800.
     
  • The More We Get Together: Early Childhood Directors and Teachers Workshop Series. A Difficult Time of the Year: Understanding and Responding to Challenging Behaviors 
    Children can become oppositional and engage in lots of limit-testing in the middle phase of the year. We will help you develop individual and classroom strategies for managing these behaviors. Discussion leader: Joanne Kestnbaum, L.C.S.W.
    When: Call for future dates.
    Contact: Patrick Garnett with questions
    Where: Virginia Frank Child Development Center
    3033 W. Touhy
    Chicago, IL 60645
    (Bernard Horwich JCC campus)
    Cost: $30 per person (contact us for group rates)
    Space is limited
     
  • The Morton Arboretum
    Animal Houses
    4100 Illinois, Route 53
    Lisle, IL 60532
    (630) 968-0074
    DuPage County
    See, touch, and explore eleven imaginative animal houses, all built to human-scale. It's your chance to imagine life as an animal and learn how trees provide animal habitats. Climb in a squirrel drey. Rummage through a raccoon den. Perch in a heron nest.
    Ages: all.
    Cost: $11 adults (18-64) ($7 Wednesdays); $10 seniors (65+) ($6 Wednesdays); $8 youth (2-17) ($5 Wednesdays).
    Free (under 2 yrs. old). Hours: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
    Admission includes free parking. 
     
  • Navegando el Proceso del IEP
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Family Resource Center on Disabilities
    11 E. Adams St.
    Suite 1002
    Chicago, IL 60603
    Este taller incluye información sobre las normas y reglamentos relacionados con la creación del Programade Educación Individualizada (IEP). ¿Quién es elegible para un IEP? ¿Qué dice la ley federal (IDEA) sobre el IEP? ¿Cuál es el propósito del IEP? Quien está en el equipo del IEP? ¿Qué debería incluirse en el IEP?
    View Map
    MOPD 11 E. Adams St. Ste.1002 Chicago, IL 60603
    MOPD 312-939-3513
     
  • Network 1212
    The newest Taylor Street Social Club coming to Chicago in 2014
    Join us for pizza, board games and friendly conversation and learn how you can be a part of Network 1212.
    For adults 18-35 with high-functioning autism or social/communication challenges. Must be able to come without family support.
    When: Sunday April 27, 1-2:45 p.m.
    Where: Pompei
    1531 W. Taylor St.
    Chicago, IL 60607
    Contact/RSVP Ann at (312) 942-4450
    email: ann_hermes-tudor@rush.edu or julie@jmtf.org
    Cost: $5. No cash? Come anyway.
    Sponsored by Julie and Michael Tracy Family Foundation                        
     
  • New Illinois Autism Awareness License Plate is Ready for Purchase
    Download autism awareness license plate brochure. If you would like your plate to be personalized or a vanity plate, click here for purchase.
  • New Illinois Legislation Related to Special Education
    Two key special education bills approved by Illinois legislature await the governor's signature:
    1) HB 628 amends the school code to give parents and their children's clinical providers the right to observe the child at school, with some reasonable safeguards regarding notice and scheduling.
    2) HB 979 amends the Illinois school code to explicitly incorporate the expanded transition requirements of IDEA 2004. In addition, it explicitly provides that the transition plan be incorporated into the IEP and IEP process and be developed and reviewed consistent with IEP requirements. Finally, and importantly, it requires that if the transition plan includes involvement of other agencies, the school district must monitor the other agencies to assure that the needed service is being implemented.
     
  • NIA Comprehensive Center for Developmental Disabilities
    Parenting Class Program
    Janice Eros
    1808 S. State St.
    Chicago, IL 60616-1611
    (312) 949-1808, ext. 26
    Cook County
    Provides weekly parenting classes that offers hands-on parenting instruction. Learn effective discipline, potty-training, health care, child safety, nutrition, milestones for children's development and growth, or a sleep schedule system. Guest speakers will be invited to the parent class for presenting some workshops and in service trainings.
    When: Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to noon for 6 months.
    Cost: no fee.
    No wait list.

    Parent and Professional Networking Conference
    LaGrange Highlands Middle School
    1850 West Plainfield Road
    LaGrange, IL 60525
    The Parent and Professional Networking Conference provides opportunities to network with parents, family members, and professional from across the state and visit exhibits that will provide information about Autism, support groups, service providers and organizations. This networking conference will help you gain information and support to assist you in the quest to make a difference in your own life or in the lives of those whom you love, teach, and support with Autism.
    When: Call for upcoming events

    Prioritization of Urgency of Needs for Services (PUNS)
    PARENTS: Register with the PUNS database is the FIRST and most important step you and your family can take to receive assistance now or within the next five years. What assistance can I receive if I sign up for PUNS. In-home support, respite care, job coaches, residential living arrangements, adaptive equipment and other support. 

  • Protected Tomorrows Presents: SEARCH, Inc.
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Where: Protected Tomorrows LifeCare Center, 103 Schelter Road, Lincolnshire, IL 60069
    Search, Inc. has offered innovative alternatives to outdated, one-size-fits-all services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities for over 45 years. Search Shared Living Arrangements match persons seeking services to host families in the community and works side by side with families every step of the way to develop the living arrangement and services that best meet their desires and needs.
    Registration: RSVP to registration@protectedtomorrows.com or call (847) 522-8086
     
  • PUNS - The Basics
    From the Arc of Illinois
    Family to Family Health Information & Education Center
     
  • Red Kite Round Up Theater Adventure for Kids with Autism
    Where: Jay Pritzker Pavilion - Choral Rehearsal Room of Millennium Park
    "The Red Kite Round Up is a 40-minute multisensory adventure created for children with autism spectrum disorder. Guides take ten children and their chaperones on a digitally simulated outdoor trip where they can chase butterflies, hike trails, star gaze and more.
    When: visit next summer for future dates and times.
    Ages: 5-13.
    Cost: tickets are $10 ($20 covers total cost for a child and one chaperone; $10 observer tickets subject to availability). Capacity for Red Kite Round Up is extremely limited and advanced reservations are required. For more information call (773) 227-0180, ext. 15.
     
  • SAVE OUR DISABILITY AND HUMAN SERVICES
    Find more information on the pending budget cuts hereAction Alert: click here to send an e-mail to your representatives. If you haven't, call your state senator. Identify them here. Things you can do to get involved:
    Become a key communicator coordinator.
    Call (309) 693-8981, to volunteer.
    Contact the media: write a letter to the editor, hold a press conference, contact a reporter, urge Congress to provide more funding for autism, and/or call the Family Support Network for help.
     
  • The Second City Training Center - Chicago 
    A Workshop in Improvisation for Teens on the Autistic Spectrum
    Contact: Andrew Thorp
    Phone: (312) 664.3959
    email: Athorp@secondcity.com
    Images: Available Upon Request
    When: Call for upcoming events.
    Second City Training Center - Chicago will host a three-day workshop for teens on the autistic spectrum called “From The Inside Out.”
    Cost: Free.
    Register: (312) 664.3959 or visit the website link above. 
    Improvisational exercises will help students develop skills in accessing emotions, working as an ensemble and storytelling in a safe and supportive setting where the students can explore and challenge themselves. 
     
  • Social Security Administration/Ticket Holder Pilot Program
    The Chicago Region of Social Security is initiating a pilot program involving expanded consideration of SSA ticket holders for job openings within our agency.  This pilot program is intended to help increase career opportunities for persons with disabilities. Additional questions may also be directed to the area work incentive coordinators and regional recruitment committee chairpersons in your area in your area. For more information.
     
  • SPEED's Family Health Fair
    SPEED is a special education cooperative that provides educational and family-centered services to students with special needs from 15 surrounding school districts. The Coop will be hosting a Health Fair for students, their families and the community.
    When: Call for upcoming dates.
    Ages: 3-21.
    Cost: Free event.
    Contact: Denise Moore, parent-family coordinator
    SPEED S.E.J.A. #802
    1125 Division St.
    Chicago Heights, IL 60411
    (708) 481-6101, ext 3217
    Cook County 
    email: dmoore@speed802.org
        
  • Transition Timeline
    This timeline is a guide for parents of students with special needs planning for life after high school. Regardless of your childs age, we recommend that you review the timeline in its entirety so that you will have a complete understanding of the transition process. It is intended to be used by all members of your childs educational team. In order for transition planning to be successful, it must be a true partnership between students, parents and educators.
     
  • Transition Tool Kit
    Provided by Autism Speaks, Family Services. Tool kit serves as a guide that can provide you with options to think about and explore as you and your adolescent with autism begin to plan for adulthood. The kit is broken down into different sections. At the end of each section, resources are provided specific to that section, as well as forms to help you keep track of the many pieces that constitute a transition plan. Since the transition process is different in each state, they have developed timelines for each state, with state agency information that may be helpful to you throughout the process. Download free tool kit.
      
  • Other Events at Trinity Services, Inc.
    Sib Shops
    Contact: Katie Decker
    (815) 462-4273
    Will County
    email: kdecker@trinity-services.org
    Helping children meet friends and learn how to cope with the challenges of having siblings affected by autism spectrum disorders.
    When: call for next date of Sib Shops.
    Cost: $20 (1 child); $25 (2 children); $30 (3 children).
    No wait list.
     
  • Other Events at Trinity Services, Inc.
    New Diagnosis Family Orientation Program
    Contact: Katie Decker
    (815) 462-4273
    email: kdecker@trinity-services.org
    Program is designed to assist family members in understanding autism spectrum disorders. The program provides an opportunity for families to ask questions about this developmental disability and to meet other families who are on the same journey. Program topics include Session One: Introduction to ASD; Session Two: Research-Supported Interventions; and Session Three: Available Resources and Parent Tools. If you would like additional information, call Katie Decker.
     
  • The University of Illinois at Chicago
    Sibling Training about Disability Policy
    Contact: Katie Arnold
    (312) 996.1002
    email: kkeiling@uic.edu
    Where: The University of Illinois at Chicago
    1640 W. Roosevelt Road
    Chicago, IL
    When: Call for upcoming events
    Where: The Autism Program of Illinois
    5520 South Sixth Street Road
    Springfield, IL
    When: Call for upcoming events
    People who participate in this training will: increase knowledge of disability policy; share ideas on long term services and supports; identify strategies to be agents of change, and receive a toolkit of strategies for civic engagement.
    Lunch will be provided.
    Cost: The training is free.
       
  • Yoga Calm for Children and Teens
    Integrated Approach to Wellness, Summer Intensive
    with Lynea Gillen, MS, RYT, Jim Gillen, RYT and Wendy Handrich, MS, Ed, Director of Education, Genesee Lake School
    Where: Genesee Lake School at ODTC
    Oconomowoc, WI
    (45-minutes from Milwaukee International Airport)
    (503) 977-0944
    Professional development for educators, counselors and therapists. Yoga Calm is an award-winning, K-12 wellness curriculum used by thousands of educators and therapists. It integrates simple yoga-based activities, mindfulness exercises and social/emotional skills-building games that help children improve their focus, learning readiness, behavioral skills, physical health and emotional stability. Developed from over 30 years of classroom, counseling and clinical experience, it works for a wide range of students, including those with severe behavior disorders. When: call for future dates.
    Cost: $795 (includes textbook and healthy lunches). Three graduate credits available from Alverno College. Lodging: $420 for six nights and meals (double occupancy).
    Register by calling or visiting their website.
     
  • YOGA for Parents and Caregivers of Children wirh Autism
    Teacher: Maria Rosner
    Yogaview Lincoln Park
    2211 N. Elston Ave., #200 (corner Webster and Elston)
    Chicago, IL
    Raising a child with autism can be demanding, exhausting, and lonely. Parents and caregivers often find themselves depleted and discouraged as they navigate the day-to-day challenges of caring for and communicating with their child. The importance of self-care and community cannot be overstated.
    Yoga practice in community with others who can relate to what you are going through can offer not only respite and renewal, but perspective, allowing us to transcend the feelings that often cloud our ability to celebrate the talents and potential of our unique children. In this special yoga sangha (community), we will practice empowering and restorative asanas (physical poses) and pranayama (conscious breathing) to strengthen, support, and restore the body and mind. Parents will also have the opportunity to participate in a Q&A forum with Maria after class.
    All levels are welcome, and attendance is open to parents and caregivers of ANY special needs child.
    When: Friday April 25, 6-8 p.m. to register click on the link above then under "workshops"
    Cost: $20


Although our website includes links providing direct access to other Internet sites, the Autism Resource Center at Rush University takes no responsibility for the content or information contained on those other sites, and does not exert any editorial or other control over those other sites.

The information on this website is provided for general reference purposes. It does not constitute medical or other professional advice and should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your child and adolescent psychiatrist or other physician. Only a qualified, licensed physician can determine the individual treatment that is appropriate for your particular circumstances. All decisions about clinical care should be made in consultation with a physician. Inclusion of information on this website does not constitute an endorsement of views, persons, methodologies or products. The health care providers whose information is available on the website are not necessarily the agents or employees of Rush University Medical Center. In consideration for use of this website, Rush University Medical Center or any other party involved in producing or delivering this website will not be liable to you for any action or nonaction that you take in reliance upon the information provided on this website.


Autism is a complex disorder. Our website provides information and resources for families with a child with autism. If you feel your child is experiencing behavior and/or symptoms that may be associated with autistic spectrum disorders, please contact your pediatrician or a licensed physician. A comprehensive evaluation may be needed from a psychologist, neurologist, psychiatrist, speech therapist and other professionals.


The Autism Resource Center's referral and resource list is not an all-inclusive list and is subject to change. Each day the team will be adding new resources and building to our website. If you have trouble finding a referral within your area, we encourage you to call (312) 563-2272 for further information. We hope that you visit our website again for any future referrals.





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