AARC Tip of the Month - September 2017
Alaska Support Groups & Resources
Navigating the waters of caring for a child with exceptional needs can, at times, be stressful or confusing, particularly if you are new to the many processes you will face navigating school supports, service providers, and finding resources to aid your child in growing and learning. There are various support groups, classes, mentoring, and resources available for families to get the support they need. Below is a list of suggested groups and resources. 

If you know of a parent support group within the state, please contact us at  aarc@sesa.org  to add it to our resources!

All of this information is also available on our website. Check out the Autism Service Providers page, and the FAQ & Online Resources Page.

Building Strong Parents:
Support Group
Stone Soup Group support group for parents who care for children with special needs; meets on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 5:30 pm. Website.
Local & Statewide Parent Trainings
Stone Soup Group trainings and classes for families on topics such as preparing for your child's IEP meeting, bullying prevention, diagnosis specific trainings, positive solutions to challenging behaviors, and maintaining healthy relationships for young adults. Website.
Contact SSG for availability in your area Mentor. Advocate. Partner Program
Stone Soup Group Families of children with special needs are paired with mentor families who have had similar experiences. The mentor provides support and a listening ear. Apply to be paired with a mentor, or apply to become a mentor! Website.
Online trainings
Autism Internet Modules modules provide research-based strategies for supporting your child; sections available for families include 'Autism at Home' and 'Autism in the Community.' Website.
Online Online Trainings
Autism Focused Intervention Resources and Modules
online trainings offer video examples and templates, and provide instruction in step-by-step sequences. Website.
Online Online support group and resources for siblings Sibling Support Project provides support for siblings of individuals with special health, developmental, and mental health concerns; includes resources, online support groups and sibling workshops. website.

Support Group
NAMI Anchorage Website
not autism specific; focus on mental/behavioral health
meets the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 6pm at Central Lutheran Church (1420 Cordova St.)

Anchorage Parent Group thread Website meets monthly September - May at 6pm in the thread conference room (3550 Commercial Dr)
Fairbanks Support Group
NAMI Fairbanks Website
not autism specific; focus on mental/behavioral health
meets the 1st Thursday of each month in the board room on the 1st floor of the Noel Wein Public Library
(3504 Industrial Ave)
Glennallen Support Group
Facebook page
Kathy Everett 
Copper Valley Connection for Special Needs
meets the 3rd Thursday of the month at Glennallen High School

Juneau Support Group
NAMI Juneau Website not autism specific; focus on mental/behavioral health
meets 1st & 3rd Thursday of each month

Juneau Parent-run 
support group
Lori King, text to
check In:
meets 3rd Thursday of each month (most months) at Northern Lights Church
Wasilla Resource Center
Website LINKS Community Parent Resource Center
The goal of this organization is to increase parent knowledge and involvement in their child's education for parents in the Mat-Su Borough.

Family Support Program
Frontier Community Services
"6-month program that provides in-home supports for families that are in need of a fresh pair of eyes and an extra set of hands" 

Books of the Month:
The books of the month are available in the Special Education Service Agency (SESA) Library. Search for books on the  SESA website, or contact our Librarian, Anne Freitag, at  afreitag@sesa.org  or  907-334-1301 

Electronic books may be accessed from anywhere in the state. If you've used our ebooks before,  go to the login page here.  If you haven't, please contact Anne so she can set up a username and password for you.  

You can also look for additional articles in a variety of databases by using SLED, which is available for free for all Alaskans:  http://lam.alaska.gov/sled
Next Chapter Book Club: a model community literacy program for people with intellectual disabilities
By: Thomas R. Fish, Paula Rabidoux ; with Jillian Ober and Vicki L.W. Graff
Woodbine House, 2009
ISBN:  9781890627799

Description: "All aspects of sponsoring, organizing and implementing a book club in any community are covered. Facilitators learn how to manage their group, use strategies to initiate or improve reading skills, and encourage social interaction. NCBC also provides ongoing training and support to program coordinators and facilitators. A handy CD-ROM included in the book provides several dozen key forms and templates, such as Member and Facilitator Intake Forms, End-of-Book Survey, and Five-Level Scale of Literacy Skills. It also includes 57 strategies and activities that book clubs use." - Publisher's website. Next Chapter Book Club Website
Mozart and the Whale [videorecording (DVD)]
Millennium Films: Robert Lawrence production for Equity Pictures Medienfonds GmbH & Co. KG II
By Petter Nµss
Produced by Robert Lawrence, Ron Bass, Boaz Davidson, Frank DeMartini and James Acheson
Written by Ron Bass
Directed by Petter Nµss
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, [2006]

Description: Donald and Isabelle have a form of autism called Asperger's Syndrome. Donald, a good-natured but hapless cab driver has a knack for numbers. He falls head over heals in love with the beautiful but complex Isabelle when she joins the autism support group he leads. This is a PG-13 fictional movie.
The First Year: Autism Spectrum Disorders: an essential guide for the newly diagnosed child
By: Nancy D. Wiseman with Robert L. Rich
Foreword by: Kenneth Bock
Da Capo Life Long, 2009

ISBN:  9781600940651
Ebook ISBN: 9780786745371 (contact Anne for more information about ebooks: afreitag@sesa.org)

Description: "When parents learn that their child has autism, the news can be devastating, even paralyzing. Meanwhile, the first 12 months after diagnosis are the most important when it comes to intervention. As a parent of a child with autism, Nancy D. Wiseman knows firsthand how difficult it can be to unravel complex issues, discover what questions to ask, and find effective treatments. In this landmark guide, Wiseman offers both compassionate insight and a wealth of information for diagnoses from Asperger's to classic autism. Day by day, week by week, month by month, The First Year : Autism Spectrum Disorders walks parents through a wide range of medical and lifestyle concerns, helps them navigate the healthcare, insurance, and educational systems, and ensures the best possible outcome for their child." - Publisher's website.
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