Empowering Through Information and the Fostering of Connections
Acceptance. Intervention. Civil Rights. March 01, 2018

In This Issue

Checklist of abilities opens window onto lives of people with autism

Schizophrenia: A byproduct of the brain's complex evolution?

What teenagers can teach scientists about autism

The Best Advice I Have Ever Heard About Parenting A Child With ADHD

Family and Others Looking for Help!!!

Registration for CAMP I CAN Opens March 19, 2018

Mapping Dreams: The Transition to Adulthood

YOU can be a SUPERHERO for Autism!

North County Coffee Club

Developmental DIR Autism Therapy in Your Home!

Friendship Circle San Diego is Hiring!!!

Cara Lucier & Associates

33rd Annual CSUN Assistive Technology Conference, San Diego

Save the Date: Love and Autism Conference

Register for Involved Exceptional Parents' Day!

ABA Behavior Therapies & Testing

TAG's Speech Therapy Program

The 2018 Winter Edition of The Q Report is in!!!

Conference: Teaching Social Competencies - More Than Social Skills - Discounts now extended through March 6!!!



  • Checklist of abilities opens window onto lives of people with autism
  • A new catalog aims to help clinicians evaluate the daily challenges people with autism face, and the environment in which they live.

    The catalog is the result of an intensive international effort, initiated in 2012. It could lead to accommodations and treatments tailored to individuals on the spectrum.

    Most clinicians diagnose autism based on criteria in the "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders" (DSM-5) or the "International Classification of Diseases" (ICD). Both manuals define autism using a checklist of features, such as problems with social skills and restrictive and repetitive behaviors. Read on...

  • Schizophrenia: A byproduct of the brain's complex evolution?
  • New genetic evidence, published in the journal Schizophrenia, suggests that the condition is an "unwanted side effect" of the evolution of the complex human brain.

    More and more studies have been illuminating the genetic components of schizophrenia, a condition that affects about 1 percent of the world's population.

    The largest twin study of schizophrenia put 79 percent of the risk of the condition down to genes, while another believed that genetic mutations in the brain's glial cells may be responsible for the disorder.

    Now, a new study conducted by three researchers from the Florey Institute for Neuroscience and Mental Health in Parkville, Australia, finds genetic changes in a frontal brain area commonly linked with schizophrenia traits, supporting the theory that the condition may be an undesired side effect of the human brain's evolution. Read on...

  • What teenagers can teach scientists about autism
  • I am the proud parent of two amazing, inspiring teenage girls. We fill our evenings and weekends with my unproven algebra tutoring and driving school. I sometimes struggle in my roles as tutor, math instructor, interpreter for the male gender ... and father.

    Life Science

    Autism research and the real world

    My desire to better understand my daughters and to be a good father has led me to follow with great interest the burgeoning area of adolescent brain development. I'm awestruck by how the latest findings apply to my daughters. Moreover, my colleagues and I are keen to consider how this work can inform our understanding of autism1.

    This is an exciting time for autism research. Yet, despite the breakthroughs over the past few years, one key group of people with autism continues to be underresearched - teenagers. Paradoxically, this is the group that needs new research most urgently. Read on...

  • The Best Advice I Have Ever Heard About Parenting A Child With ADHD
  • Years ago, when my sons were toddlers, I had lunch with a good friend who was a special education teacher.

    We had gone to school together and although I made the decision to leave the special education classroom early on, she stayed and had been teaching for almost ten years.

    Over a salad and bread sticks, we talked about how different the classroom really was from what we learned in school. I shared my experience and she shared hers.

    At some point, the topic of behavior management came up. She had several boys in her classroom who did not really fit anything we had learned about back in the 90's. Read on...

  • Family and Others Looking for Help!!!

  • I am looking for a summer camp for my 6-year-old son who has autism in Southern California since we are moving to the area this coming May. Please let me know what camps are good!

    Looking for a daytime assistance for a 13 year old with autism. Someone to help with homeschooling and occasional appointments. Please email resume

    I am looking for some resources for my son. He has high functioning autism, adhd and sensory integration disorder. He also has behaviors that can be pretty aggressive at school. I am trying to find a school in San Diego north county that maybe able to assist. I would appreciate any suggestions.

    Hello, I am a of mom of beautiful boy with autism and also a graduate student of clinical counseling program from University of Phoenix. I am couple weeks away from finishing my theoretical classes and looking for the agency, center or private practice that might be able to host me for my practicum and 2 internships, 700 hours, towards my Master Degree in Clinical Counseling. I have an extensive experience in autism field and I am open to any sites that can be autism and family therapy oriented. Please let me know if you might have some ideas or if you would be to provide those hours for me.
    Thank you much !

    I'm a mom of a 17 year old student with high functioning autism who will be applying to college this fall. I wondered if anyone has worked with a professional college coach/planner who has some knowledge of best colleges for students with high functioning autism. Would love to talk to other parents for advice on making the transition from high school to college. Please email me at

    Hi! I am wondering if anyone has a name of a Medical marijuana doctor in San Diego(north county preferred) not a recommendation doctor- but a real doctor who can give advice for strains and doses. Also any info for trials would be appreciated. Please email me at:
    Thank you!

    Can you recommend someone in San Diego to establish a special needs trust for my 2 children on the Autism Spectrum. We live in Carmel Valley area.

    Hi im from chula vista my son is autistic and im having so much problems with his school theres any way you can give information about an advocate on this area please.

    Hello! I am a mom of an 12 yr old in an out of state residential placement. I am trying to find moms in a similar situation for support and questions. Please contact me at

    If you have a question or request for this newsletter group, please send your email request to People who can help you will email you directly with their responses.

  • Registration for CAMP I CAN Opens March 19, 2018
  • We are looking forward to our 17th year of Camp I CAN! Camp I CAN was created and developed by the Autism Society San Diego in partnership with the YMCA to provide a fun, safe and nurturing camp experience. Funding for Camp I CAN is provided primarily by the Autism Society San Diego and our generous community donors.

    More information on Camp I CAN can be found here.

  • Mapping Dreams: The Transition to Adulthood
  • Mon., Mar. 12, 2018, 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
    FREE Admission. Registration required.

    ABA Behavior Therapies & Testing - The ABA Group
    1501 5th Avenue, Suite 400, San Diego, CA 92101
    Register online at or call 619.282.0846

  • YOU can be a SUPERHERO for Autism!
  • You can be a SUPERHERO for those with autism on Saturday, March 24th!

    Race includes a commemorative medal, T-shirt or cape and includes a fantastic Resource Fair, children's activities, music, dancing & lots of fun!

    100% of the Race proceeds stay in San Diego and help to fund early identification and education efforts, technical training in software testing for young adults, parent programs, instructional workshops and has funded more than 700 community programs and classrooms, benefiting thousands of local children and families.

    Please join us in making a difference on March 24th. Because everyone can be a SUPERHERO! Register Today at

  • North County Coffee Club
  • Hosted by Talk About Curing Autism (TACA) San Diego Chapter

    Thursday, March 8th
    10 AM - 12 PM
    2Good2B Bakery & Cafe
    204 N El Camino Real, Suite H
    Encinitas, California 92024

    Great Coffee, support you need in you autism journey and of course allergy friendly foods. What more do you need as an autism parent or caretaker? Join TACA San Diego Co-Coordinator Vanessa Surprise for all this and possibly more... Click here for all the info!!!

  • Developmental DIR Autism Therapy in Your Home!
  • Real Connections Child Development Institute
    Supporting and partnering with families of children on the autism spectrum through understanding, engagement and relationships.

    Developmental Play Therapy - 1:1 developmental therapy in your child's natural environment. Evidenced- based, emotional, cognitive and neurobiological therapy that assists your child in developing meaningful relationships.

    Parent Coaching & Support - Real-time training and education in your child's individual profile. Learn new ways to engage and connect, while focusing on communicative and cognitive/ social emotional development. Maximize your child's developmental growth through both daily interactions and parent-child intervention sessions.

    A "Whole Child" Program

    • Flexible Thinking
    • Problem Solving
    • Scripting
    • Perserveration
    • Meltdowns
    • Executive Function Skills
    • Regulation
    • Sensory Integration
    • Spatial Processing
    • Individualized Program
    Real Connections San Diego
    415 North Highway 101, Suite C
    Solana Beach, CA 92075
    619-840-0015 or 858-768-0313

  • Friendship Circle San Diego is Hiring!!!
  • FC is hiring! Please take a look at the position, share with friends and colleagues, and make sure to follow directions on how to apply. Spread the word! The position is for a Development Manager. Click here for all the info!!!

  • Cara Lucier & Associates
  • At Cara Lucier & Associates we believe in the ability of every person to reach their potential. We believe that education is the key to opportunity. We advocate for the rights of individuals and their families:

    • IEP team meetings
    • Mediation
    • Due Process Hearings and Appeals
    • 504 Meetings and Appeals
    • Regional Center Meetings and Appeals
    • IHSS Appeals
    • Civil Rights Litigation
    For a free 60-minute initial consultation, please contact us at (760)505-2498.

    Law Offices of Cara Lucier
    Civil Rights and Education Law
    701 Palomar Airport Road, Suite #300
    Carlsbad, CA 92011
    Phone: (760) 717-3451

  • 33rd Annual CSUN Assistive Technology Conference, San Diego
  • March 19 to March 23, 2018
    Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel
    San Diego, CA 92101
    Register at
    Fee: $555

  • Save the Date: Love and Autism Conference
  • The 2018 Love & Autism conference dates have been set! Parents, professionals, self-advocates or anyone who wants to get involved with an organization that stands for acceptance and authenticity, you don't want to miss this year!

    Click here to sign up to receive all the info about this upcoming conference!!

  • Register for Involved Exceptional Parents' Day!
  • Involved Exceptional Parents' Day (IEP Day) is an annual conference for parents, family members and caregivers of individuals with special needs. This year, the 35th annual conference, will be held on Saturday, March 17, 2018 at the Handlery Hotel in Mission Valley. We are busily making plans for the 15 featured workshops (offered in English and Spanish), a networking luncheon, huge resource fair and more for the nearly 400 people who attend. This year's conference theme is "Finding Our Balance".

    The Registration Packet and online registration are on the conference website: SDRC funding may be available. For SDRC funding, please talk with your SDRC service coordinator.

    See you at the conference!

  • ABA Behavior Therapies & Testing
  • For more information, please contact Marymichelle Lotano to schedule a free consultation.

  • TAG's Speech Therapy Program
  • Offering support in the San Diego, Carlsbad, Orange County and Riverside County.
    In addition to supporting our clients directly, we offer guidance to parents, grandparents, therapists, teachers, siblings, school staff, babysitters etc.

    San Diego Office
    9466 Black Mountain Road, Suite 100
    San Diego, CA 92126
    Phone: (858) 689-2027

    Carlsbad Office
    5411 Avenida Encinas, Suite 110
    Carlsbad, CA 92008
    Phone: (760) 448-5837

    Temecula Office
    43537 RidgePark Dr.
    Temecula, CA 92590
    Phone: (858) 689-2027

  • The 2018 Winter Edition of The Q Report is in!!!
  • The 2018 winter edition of The Q Report is in. Enjoy stories about our organization, the incredible people who support us, accomplishments of HGH staff, reports and photos of fundraising events, and most importantly, the people we are so privileged to serve.

    Take a peek and let us know your thoughts. We welcome your feedback.

    Click here to read the edition.

  • Conference: Teaching Social Competencies - More Than Social Skills - Discounts now extended through March 6!!!
  • Our mission is to help people develop social competencies to better connect with others and live happier, more meaningful lives. We do this by creating concepts, curricula, and materials that help professionals and parents teach social competencies and help individuals as young as four and across the lifespan meet their personal, academic, and professional goals.

    Join us in San Diego! March 12-15, 2018
    Discounts now extended through March 6
    Professionals save 20%
    Parents and students save 30%

    Learn practical strategies for self-regulation, executive functioning, perspective taking, and more at the four-day conference. Learn More & Register!

  • ASD Mornings at theNAT
  • Autism Accessibility Morning at the Fleet!

  • The third Saturday of every month, Fleet invites the Autism Spectrum Community to enjoy our museum through this special opportunity. Adults and families with children with autism can enjoy the Fleet's exhibit galleries in a quieter setting, an hour before regular open hours to the general public and with access to a special cool-off space. Visitors are welcome to stay and enjoy the museum all day. Admission includes a special IMAX film screening at 10 a.m. with the house lights on and a lower soundtrack volume.

    For more information, visit

  • San Diego Sibshop

  • October 2017 - August 2018

    WANTED: Siblings who have a brother/sister with special needs

    AGES: 7 - 12 years old
    Older siblings are welcome to attend as "Junior Leaders"

    WHAT: A fun-filled opportunity geared to the specific needs of siblings with brothers/sisters with special needs. Join us for games, crafts, hikes, cooking, and art. Meet other sibs - lunch provided

    TIME: 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

    Feb. 25: Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor Center
    March 25: Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor Center
    May 20: Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor Center
    August 19: Santee Lakes, 9310 Fanita Pkwy, Santee, CA 92071**

    DONATION: $5.00 - $10.00 per meeting per family for craft materials, supplies and lunch for the kids

    REGISTRATION: Pre-registration requested by email (if possible) the Thursday before the event.

    CONTACT: Email for a Sibshop registration form and / or additional information.

    Sibshop Leaders:
    Jody BonDurant-Strong, Administrator
    Ndoto BonDurant-Strong - adult sibling & CSUSM student
    Gina Clifton, ECSE Medically-Fragile Teacher, Special Education
    Pat Moulton, Retired

    Directions for Mission Trails Regional Park Visitor's Center (MTRP):
    1 Father Juniper Serra Trail (92119). Interstate 8 to 15 North / East on Friars Road.
    Stay to left - turns into Mission Gorge Road / Turn left on 1 Father Juniper Serra.

  • Join UCSD Autism Center of Excellence on either SATURDAY OR SUNDAY, APRIL 7-8 for our first SPARKforAutism live-registration event!

  • Join UCSD Autism Center of Excellence on either SATURDAY OR SUNDAY, APRIL 7-8 for our first SPARKforAutism live-registration event! There will be free parking, drinks, child care, games, and giveaways. Come out, join the fun, and enroll in the largest, genetics study of autism with over 9,000 families already participating nationwide! Staff will help guide families through the online registration process and assist with saliva collection. Child care will be provided while parents complete registration. Families who complete the study will receive up to a $50 Amazon e-gift card. Help us understand the genetic causes of ASD and develop better, more effective treatments so that each child can reach their full potential!

    Time: 9 AM- 5 PM
    Where: UCSD Autism Center of Excellence- 8110 La Jolla Shores Drive, Suite 201/202, La Jolla, CA 92037

    To reserve a registration spot, please RSVP by March 29th by calling 858-534-6906 or emailing Hannah Kaplan at
    RSVP is required for attendance and gift card giveaways. BOTH biological parents and the individual/child with ASD are encouraged to attend this event as this is a genetics study. Families must be able to consent and complete registration in English. We can't wait to see you there!

  • Spring 2018 Therapeutic Recreation Services Calendar

  • Click here for our new Spring 2018 calendar. Please note the following important dates:

    >>First day of registration for Spring activities
    Saturday, February 17 at 10:00 a.m.

    >>First day of registration for Summer Camps
    Saturday, March 3rd at 10:00 a.m.

    You may sign up online at or at our office 3325 Zoo Drive, 92101.

  • Vanderbilt Kennedy Center: Residential and Respite Care Services Survey

  • The survey will take less than 30 minutes to complete. The survey is anonymous and voluntary and the responses are confidential. The responses will be helpful in determining issues and supports related to residential and respite care services. We will raffle ten $25 gift cards at the close of the survey for participants who complete the survey.

    Click here to take the survey and help with research to improve lives!!!


    I never endorse anyone or anything. Opinions expressed in what I send out, may not be shared by me. Everything is for informational purposes only.
    People who "advertise" through this newsletter have never been checked out by me. Same goes for the "Sponsors". This includes professionals and even people who are interested in babysitting, etc. So, please take the time to thoroughly check out anyone and everyone who will be working with or caring for your child/adult. We are all sadly aware, through news stories and word of mouth, of people who prey upon special needs children and adults because of their extra vulnerability.

    Valerie Dodd-Saraf
    President, Foggy Coast Ventures, Inc.