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Autism Events and Information

  • "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
  • Advocate Children's Hospital
    The Center for Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics
    Presents: Autism Spectrum Disorder Round Table
    Parents and Providers Partnering for the Best Outcome

    Contact: Carol Rizzie
    Where: Olson Auditorium
    1775 Dempster St.
    Park Ridge, IL 60068
    Who should attend? Parents of children with autism spectrum disorder, professionals working in the field of autism including: physicians, psychologists, school nurses, social workers, teachers and therapists. Intended for adults only. Experts in the field will discuss: diagnosis and characteristics of autism spectrum disorder, time-tested and evidence-based treatment strategies used in the Autism Treatment Program; and effectiveness of including families in therapy.
    When: Thursday, April 16, 5:15-8 p.m.
    Cost: registration is free. Parking is free - West garage, located south of Dempster on Luther Lane.
  • 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
    Cost: free for professionals in the community. One CEU/CPDU provided for attendance.
  • 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:
  • 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.
  • Cat & Mouse Game Store
    1112 W. Madison St.
    Chicago, IL 60608
    (312) 465-2178
    Cook County
    Educational toys and board games for all skill levels, host to family events and workshops.
    Board Games and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD): A workshop on how to use tabletop games for leisure, social skill building, and language development. Taught by Beth Heile, a speech therapist with 11 years of experience working with children with ASD.
    When: April 25, 1-3 p.m.
    Cost: $40, for tickets and more information.
  • 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.
  • Developmental Disabilities Ask the Experts
    Where: Vernon Hills Park District
    Sullivan Center Community Room
    635 Aspen Drive
    Vernon Hills, IL
    (847) 478-9909
    When: Thursday, Sept. 10, 6:30-8 p.m.
    Join experts, families and local legislators for a group discussion on Supplemental Security Income (SSI), disability services, PUNS placement, day and residential services, home-based care and other issues facing persons with developmental disabilities and their families. Please join State Representative Rita Mayfield, State Representative Carol Sente and State Senator Terry Link.
    This event is free and open to the public.
  • 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
    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.
    When: call for upcoming events.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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 Insurance Facts
    Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
  • 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.
  • 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.
    Visual Training Systems Catalog

  • 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 (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.
  • 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
    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?
    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: group meets every other Sunday.
    Where: Pompei
    1531 W. Taylor St.
    Chicago, IL 60607
    email: for more information.
    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.
  • Op-Ed: North Shore Lacks Housing Options for Youth With Special Needs
    Online article provided by Make it Better
  • 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.
  • PUNS - The Basics
    From the Arc of Illinois
    Family to Family Health Information & Education Center
  • Respite Education & Support Tools (REST)
    Become a Volunteer Respite Care Worker

    Lisa Esposito, REST coordinator
    (630) 397-5656
    Jenna Olznoi, IL REST program coodinator
    (630) 397-5662
    Where: St. Alexius Medical Center
    1555 Barrington Road
    Hoffman Estates, IL 60169
    When: Saturday, July 18, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
    Become a volunteer respite care worker. REST, respite education and support tools, is a unique, interactive training program, where you will receive the education and tools needed to be confident and successful in providing respite care to adults and children. Lunch and snacks will be provided. The Illinois Department of Human Services has approved the REST volunteer respite worker course for 6.75 CE hours. For more information.
    Find more information on the pending budget cuts here. Action alert: Send an email 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.
  • 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.
  • 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.

If you are interested in adding your organization or would like to make changes to a current listing on our website, please contact Natalie Forburger, LCPC, at (312) 563-2272 or