It's How Medicine Should Be®


French German Italian Portuguese Russian

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 Lutheran General Children's Hospital
    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
    "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
    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:
  • The Autism Program (TAP) Service Center - Rockford
    Autism Spectrum Disorder Overview Basics of Behavior
    Contact: Megan Herbig to register or for more information
    (815) 395-5561 or
    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
    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; and develop an understanding of basic behavioral theory.
    Who: parents and professionals.
    When: call for future dates.
    Cost: parents-free; $20 (professionals).
  • The Autism Program (TAP) Service Center & Easter Seals Metropolitan Chicago-Rockford Region presents:
    Nonviolent crisis intervention: Sharing Strategies: A workshop for parents and caregivers

    Contact: Debra Benassi
    1601 Parkview
    Rockford, IL 61107
    When: February 4, 6-8 p.m.
    Workshop is designed for parents and other caregivers who support individuals who are served by a school that implements the nonviolent crisis intervention training program. An overview of some of the concepts and strategies taught in the nonviolent crisis intervention training program that could aid in the continuity of a person's support and care will be presented by Kim Moore, CPI instructor.
  • Autism Speaks - Town Halls on Adult Services presents: Housing, residential supports, and community living for adults with autism
    Autism Speaks Chicagoland Chapter
    (224) 567-8573
    Where: location to be determined
    When: Thursday, February 19, 6:30-9 p.m.; 6:30 p.m. - Adult Services Resource Fair; 7:30-9 p.m. - Moderated Panel Discussion and Q&A with Chicago area experts and leaders.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • 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
  • 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.
  • 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
    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.
    When: call for upcoming events.
    Insurance not accepted.
    Cost: $750. One time fee-for-service to be paid at initial visit.
  • 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
    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:
    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.
  • 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.
  • 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
    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
    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
    When: call for upcoming events.
  • Have Dreams
    REDI Retail Program Open House

    Tom Dempsey
    2020 Dempster St.
    Evanston, IL 60202
    (847) 905-0702, x 229
    For transition staff, parents, and other professionals. In partnership with Walgreens Corp., Have Dreams is proud to announce a new retail training course designed to increase employment opportunities! 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.
    When: call for more upcoming events and programs.
    Ages: teens and young adults with autism or other developmental disabilities.
    Cost: $900
    Space is limited.
  • 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
    Cook County
    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.
    When: call for upcoming events.  
  • 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

    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. 
  • 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.
  • Lose the Training Wheels
    Contact: Jordan McDonald
    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.
    When: call for future dates.
    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
    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.
  • 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: call for next round of classes.
    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 or call (847) 522-8086.
  • PUNS - The Basics
    From the Arc of Illinois
    Family to Family Health Information & Education Center
  • PUNS Prioritization of Unmet Need for Services Victory and Confusion
  • Resource Center for Autism and Developmental Delays (2 locations)
    10 S. Kedzie, Room 202
    (312) 746-5447
    4314 S. Cottage Grove, Room 103
    (312) 747-8571
    Upcoming workshops:
    Understanding Autism: An overview for families and professionals. This workshop will address the core characteristics of autism spectrum disorders.
    When: Wednesday, January 28 and March 18
    Where: West location, 10 S. Kedzie, Room 205
    When: Wednesday, January 14, March 4, May 6, July 1, September 2, November 4
    Where: South location, 4314 S. Cottage Grove, King Training Center

    Tips & Tools for Homes & Schools. This workshop will cover classroom and home strategies meant to address the academic, social and leisure objectives of the child with autism and/or developmental delays. Although the content may be applicable to all, the subject matter is specific to families and educators of children enrolled in early education.
    When: Wednesday, February 18
    Where: West location, 10 S. Kedzie, Room 205
    When: February 4, April 1, June 3, August 5, October 7
    Where: South location, 4314 S. Cottage Grove, King Training Center

    Find more information on the pending budget cuts here. Action 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.
  • 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 S.E.J.A. #802
    Contact: Denise Moore, parent-family coordinator
    1125 Division St.
    Chicago Heights, IL 60411
    (708) 481-6101, ext 3217
    Cook County
    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 years.
    Cost: free event.
  • Totally Temple! Dr. Temple Grandin is coming to the Chicago area (Aurora). Temple presents on autism and animals. Book signing included.
    When: Thursday, May 14, 8-11:30 a.m.
    (800) 489-0727 - call to register.
    Cost: $25 
  • 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
    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
    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.

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