How to Find Autism Resources
Where do you start to find autism resources for your child or yourself? After a diagnosis, you may feel overwhelmed, frightened and have no clue where to begin. Every person on the autism spectrum is unique and so are their needs. The levels and kinds of support they’ll require will vary so there isn’t a “one size fits all” kind of approach.
The good news is that help is out there! With a positive, hopeful attitude and a never-give-up determination, you can find resources and advocate for what you need:
Step 1: Prepare for the search before you start searching
When there’s a problem, we typically jump right in and start searching for solutions before we’ve taken the time to fully identify the problem. Pause. Take a deep breathe. Now, take some time to write down what’s happening or what behaviors you are observing. Add your concerns or fears. At first, just get everything out, then go back and edit it into a one-page concise “needs assessment” document. This will help you focus, get clear on what you are searching for, and help you communicate your needs.
Step 2: Talk to local resources for recommendations
Next, start with any local autism organization and have a conversation. Use your needs assessment document to help you stay on point and focused. Expect that this may be the first of many conversations you’ll need to have in order to find the right resources for you or your child. Try not to get anxious or frustrated by the process. It’s OK to ask for help from a family member or friend.
A good place to start to find local resources is Autism Society of America’s Autism Source Database
Step 3: Find an online supportive community
Find your tribe. There are many online communities that exist to offer support and advice. Before engaging, spend some time reading posts and comments to get a feel for the community. Look for groups that are kind, compassionate, inclusive and positive.
Here are online sources we value:
- Get advice and feedback from autistic individuals on Twitter by using the hashtag #AskingAutistics
- Follow the hashtag #ActuallyAutistic on Twitter
- Our Autistic team of writers on our blog and in our magazine are some of the best at communicating personal experiences and advice about life on the autism spectrum.
- The Autistic Self-Advocacy Network (ASAN) and the AWN Network have valuable resources for autistic rights and advocacy.
- The Mighty has online communities you can join for free to ask questions and share resources. We recommend following their autistic contributors.
- Autistic Inclusive Meets Community Group (AIM) on Facebook
Step 4: Create your personal go-to list of web resources
Find good web resources that provide new, relevant content on a regular basis. Read their blogs and subscribe to their newsletters so you can stay on top of what’s happening in the autism community.
Our website at Geek Club Books is a platform for autistic voices, positive autism advocacy and education, and sharing autism resources we think you’ll want to know about. Here are some of the topics we cover and questions we explore:
- What is Autism?
- What is Autism Awareness?
- Autism Myths
- Autism Glossary
- Autistic or Person with Autism?
- Books by Autistic Authors
- Speech and Language
- Autism Business Ideas
- Autistic Self-Care
- Zoom Autism Magazine – Autism through many lenses