ONTARIO ADULT AUTISM 
RESEARCH AND SUPPORT NETWORK 
NEWS BULLETIN
OAARSN offers a rich and expanding collection of up-to-date information and communication tools that can put you in touch with others. We can all benefit from the opportunities for mutual support, encouragement and information sharing. We hope that OAARSN's efforts to promote positive approaches and best practices in supporting adults with autism can help all who live and work on the front lines. Click on OAARSN's main page

See our archive of past OAARSN news bulletins.

Send news, announcements and comments to gbloomfi@uoguelph.ca We welcome news items, announcements of autism events, new information, discussion questions and comments, and accounts of experience.

 

NEWS BULLETIN
14 October 2003

NEW CONTENT ON OAARSN'S WEBSITE 

Adult Autism Issues in Waterloo-Wellington 21, October 2003 is now posted in our Documentation area.

Review: Perspectives on the Autism Spectrum Disorders. Special Issue, Journal on Developmental Disabilities: Le journal sur les handicaps du développement. Volume 9, No.2. 165 pp. edited by Maire Percy & Rita Eagle. 

Please note the wealth of news, announcements and other links in the weekly OAARSN News Bulletins that are archived on our website. Click for the list of earlier OAARSN bulletins
and find the most recent: 
June 19, 2003
June 29, 2003
July 12, 2003
July 21, 2003
July 28, 2003
August 4, 2003
August 11, 2003
September 7, 2003
September 26, 2003
October 6, 2003 

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AUTISM IN THE NEWS

Initial Autism Research Findings
Results of a general study at Harvard - Massachusetts General that has the objective of learning about the gastrointestinal function of children with autism to determine if relationships exist between digestion, allergy, motility, and behavior.
Conclusions of this preliminary study: 

  • Autistic children commonly have GI symptoms. 
  • All experience published so far is a laundry list of observational data. 
  • The brain–gut connection in autism remains to be understood. 
  • Evidence-based studies are necessary in order to delineate these associations. 
  • Recommendations 
    • We must pay attention not only to the intestinal complaints of these children, but consider behaviors and actions as potential symptoms. 
    • We have to educate more than the families about GI issues; we must educate the professional community and involve them in the process of caring for these children. 
    SmartLab:
    The story of Othello Gooden Jr (who is 18 and has Asperger's) and the "hands-on enrichment center aimed at building the technology skills needed to bring urban youth and adults with developmental disabilities into the workplace."

    Artist, reader, learner
    Tony Palumbo is a lot like other 10-year-olds, but he also faces the challenge of living with Asperger's syndrome.

    Sinking into autism's debt
    Family asks Nova Scotia government to pay for twins' treatment.

    Autism: a mother's perspective
    An interview with Patricia Stacey, who recorded her family’s struggle in her book, “The Boy Who Loved Windows.”

    The Lost Prince
    Aired by CBC-TV, October 13 and 14. The story of Prince John (1905-1919), youngest son of King George V and Queen Mary, who had epilepsy and mild autism, is central in The Lost Prince, a new two-part dramatization for TV by Stephen Poliakoff.

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    ANNOUNCEMENTS OF EVENTS OR SPECIAL PROJECTS

    **  ** means that a new posting--an event being announced here for the first time

    See details of more events on OAARSN Bulletin Board and Calendar, and our archive of past OAARSN news bulletins.

    Please send submissions for this news bulletin or for the OAARSN Calendar and Bulletin Board in plain text format by email to ebloomfi@uoguelph.ca with "announcement" at the beginning of the subject line.
    Please provide details of the following as BRIEFLY as possible: 
     Name of Event
     Main Speakers and Topics of Event 
     Date of Event 
     City and Location of Event 
     Contact information to learn more about event 
     Please Do Not Send Files Or Brochure Attachments
     

    Wednesday, October 15, 2003
    **Autismconnect offers online discussion forum featuring Jacqui Jackson and her son, Luke**
    Key addresses: www.autismconnect.org
    www.autismcymru.org
    You can put all your questions live and free to Jacqui and Luke Jackson at 16.30 hours (4.30 pm) British Summer Time  - or 11.30 US East Coast; 8.30 US West Coast. Simply go to the Autismconnect website (www.Autismconnect.org) on that day and click on Discussions. Please do not miss this invaluable opportunity to put all your questions  - from techniques in handling the behaviour of individuals with autism and Asperger’s syndrome to diet and medication (or any other autism-related topic which concerns you) - to both Jacqui and Luke on October 15.

    Jacqui is a single mother of seven children (including four on the autistic spectrum) who has just written a book on her remarkable experiences for the British publisher, Jessica Kingsley, called  ‘Multicoloured Mayhem – Parenting the Many Shades of Autism, Asperger’s syndrome and ADHD.’ She is also working towards her PhD. Her 14-year-old son, Luke, who has Asperger’s syndrome, is already an accomplished author of two books for the same publisher,  ‘A User Guide to the GF/CF Diet for Autism, AS and ADHD’ and the wonderful ‘Freaks, Geeks and Asperger’s Syndrome – a User Guide to Adolescence,’ and also gives entertaining and illuminating talks on his condition to large audiences. Users in the UK may have seen the excellent BBC documentary on the Jackson family recently.
    Click for a review of Jacqui's book: Families: It's mayhem around here!  Jacqui Jackson is a single mother with seven children, four of whom are autistic. But this is not a sob story. Her new book aims to show parents that living with autism is all about embracing the positive, she tells CLARE DWYER HOGG
     

    See past news bulletins for more details of other forthcoming events.
    Events planned for the Waterloo-Wellington-Dufferin region are repeated here.

    Kerry's Place Autism Services: Workshops in Central West Region
    July-December 2003  Click for more information about all these events
    Events are free and most will be held in the KPAS Resource Centre in Brampton, unless otherwise stated.

    Tuesday, October 21, 2003, 7-9 pm, in Kitchener
    Official launch of New Autism Collection at Kitchener Public Library
    The unique collection of books, videos and other information about Autism Spectrum Disorders, made possible by a generous grant from Waterloo Wellington Autism Services, is to be launched during Ontario Public Library week.  Click for more details

    Saturday, 25 October 2003, all day
    Dufferin Chapter of ASO:
    1st Annual Symposium on Autism
    Click for full program and registration form
     

    October 25 to November 15
    Planned Lifetime Networks: Autumn Workshop series
    Four Saturdays mornings, in Kitchener
    Planning a Good Life Now
    Oct. 25: Planning financial security
    Nov. 1: Planning a home of one's own
    Nov. 8: Planning for after we’re gone
    Nov.15: Planning with our disabled children (capacity assessment, powers of attorney, and supported decision-making.
    Click on heading for more details or phone 519-746-1188 or email plnwwo@sympatico.ca

    November 8, 2003, in Guelph
    2003 "Rock Star Gala" in Peter Clark Hall, University of Guelph, as an autism fundraiser.
    Organized by Len Kahn in support of Autism Society of Ontario, Wellington County Chapter's summer programs and the new Stephanie Home, a local group home for autistic children.

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    ANNOUNCEMENTS OF SPECIAL PROJECTS AND RESEARCH 
     

    Sharing the Voices of FC Users: Update on the Idea of a Workshop in Ontario
    Whom do you know in Ontario who uses FC to communicate? Perhaps FC is the only or most reliable way s/he can express himself/herself? Are you interested in supporting an FC workshop? Can you suggest any practical help, such as somewhere to meet, and some funds to pay for facilitation? Please let OAARSN know. You may email Chris Pentzell at CPentzell@aol.com or phone her at (310) 202-7866
     

    The Ontario Mental Health Foundation is pleased to announce that Autism Society Ontario will again be offering a studentship in 2004. The Foundation will administer the studentship on behalf of Autism Society Ontario. The regular Guidelines of the  Foundation will apply to this award, with the  following exceptions: 
    The award will be restricted to applicants who can show that their work is in the field of autism. 
    The award will be for $20,000.00 per annum. Funds are sufficient to make one award in 2004. 
    The application deadline is: Friday, November 7, 2003.
    Click for application forms etc

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    ISSUES AND ADVOCACY

    See also: Funding Issues--in OAARSN Discussion Boards and Topics. Press the Communications bar on OAARSN’s main page then choose Discussion Area

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    HELPFUL RESOURCES
     

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    FROM THE FRONT LINES: 
    CALLING FOR HELP AND SHARING EXPERIENCES

    News about adults with autism is usually negative. OAARSN receives many appeals for advice on where to turn for help--with diagnosis and assessment, advocacy, planning for the future, alternatives to approaches that are not working. There are virtually no obvious sources of help for isolated adults with autism and their caregivers.

    Appeal from family in Niagara Region with a son with autism ( high functioning ). 
    The father has identified some characteristics of this disorder in himself and seeks an assessment to determine if he also has this condition.  Please let OAARSN know who might be able to help him in this area. 

    We know that some adults and their families and caregivers are heroically using what resources they have to achieve some successes with their challenges. Some can report remarkable progress. We invite you, as an adult or caregiver living with autism, to share your problems and your success stories, if you think others might help or benefit.If you wish, we will not publish your name or email address. You may send a message to ebloomfi@uoguelph.ca for OAARSN. Or you might use the OAARSN Discussion Board, reached by pressing the Communication bar on our main page

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