Empowering Through Information and the Fostering of Connections
Love. Acceptance. Intervention. Civil Rights. January 04, 2019

In This Issue

Please Share This Newsletter and Facebook Page!!!

Notable papers in autism research in 2018

CalABLE Goes Live December 18, 2018!

Why adults need an easier path to autism diagnosis

How to design spaces for people with autism

Meta-analysis highlights important challenges in cognitive processing for adults with ASD

Family and Others Looking for Help!!!

15th annual San Diego Race for Autism Superhero 5K in Balboa Park

Teen Social Skills Group

MSNC Free Webinar Series: What Will My Child do After Highschool?

Parent Support Group in La Mesa

Yvette M. Soto Accounting & Income Tax

Community ConNext

FDA Approved Therapy for Anxiety

Science-based Social Group

Autistic Adult Social Group

ATPF Teen Time Event - Tour a US NAVY Ship

Adult Group for Individuals with Asperger-Like Thinking

Family Wellness Center Youth Programs

Sports Camp Starting in March 2019

Jeremiah's Ranch January Newsletter


Please Share This Newsletter and Facebook Page!!!

ValeriesList is a FREE resource newsletter and Facebook Page for San Diego County and has been for over 18 years. No fees or membership are required to receive this info. An informed public makes better decisions for its' persons with Special Needs. Please share with friends, family, fellow professionals and clients!!! Click here to check out my FB page! Thank YOU!

thomas nelson

Your Child's Education Comes First!

Your child is entitled to a "free and appropriate public education" or FAPE, whereby the school addresses all of your child's unique needs. A school district must provide your child with an appropriate education regardless of budget cuts, what's convenient, or what's available. Too often the school district offers a "one size fits all" program that fits within their needs, but not within the unique needs of your child. Ensuring that your child's education comes first means having the right team on your side. An effective team works cooperatively and collaboratively with the school district, using their knowledge, expertise and experience to foster quick and yet effective resolutions.

As a practicing attorney for over 25 years, Thomas S. Nelson takes great pride in helping special needs children through affordable advocacy and legal services.

  • Notable papers in autism research in 2018

  • This year's list of top papers highlights new dimensions in our understanding of autism genetics and hints at novel treatments.

    This year, as every year, we asked autism researchers to weigh in on the most 'notable' papers of the past 12 months - ones that shifted their perspective on the condition or how to treat it.

    The final selection underscores technological leaps that have given researchers unprecedented access to the genome - revealing how common genetic variants may contribute to autism, how the condition intersects with others and the potential of various therapies for treating it. Read on...

  • CalABLE Goes Live December 18, 2018!
  • The CalABLE Program will officially launch on December 18, 2018. As of that date, CalABLE's enrollment website at will be accepting new enrollees. Instructions on how to enroll is also easily located on the website.

  • Why adults need an easier path to autism diagnosis

  • When I was 4 or 5 years old, my parents told me there was no Santa Claus. As a child who attended a Jewish parochial school, this didn't come as a shock. But at the mall one day, I became incensed on behalf of children lining up to sit on the lap of a man who wasn't who he claimed to be.

    These children were being lied to, and lying was wrong. I couldn't contain myself. In the middle of the mall, I began to scream: "Santa Claus isn't real; that's not Santa! That's just a guy in a red suit! Your parents buy you presents, not Santa; they are lying to you!"

    For decades, this was a funny story my parents told at parties - until they realized it was diagnostically relevant information. (I still think it's hilarious.) Read on...

  • How to design spaces for people with autism

  • For people on the spectrum, the physical space they occupy can go a long way in providing a sense of comfort and support. Architects are working with schools to create welcoming, versatile spaces for autistic students.

    This video looks at two projects: an urban campus in New York City and a rural one in New Jersey. In both locations, icons and colors guide autistic students from one classroom or floor to another.

    Special materials dampen sensory input: Cork floors soften footsteps; shutters modulate sunlight and views; extra-wide hallways ease transitions by providing more room for students to move; and 'escape spaces' offer them respite from overwhelming experiences or interactions. Read on...

  • Meta-analysis highlights important challenges in cognitive processing for adults with ASD
  • The first comprehensive, systematic review and meta-analysis of adults with autism shows that despite having an intact IQ, these adults have medium to large impairments in four key social- and non-social cognitive domains: theory of mind, emotion perception and knowledge, processing speed, and verbal learning and memory.

    The results may help create a roadmap for treating autism in adults, a population that is less studied and understood than children with the condition.

    The meta-analysis was conducted by the Seaver Autism Center for Research and Treatment at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in collaboration with City University London and published Wednesday, January 2, in JAMA Psychiatry. Read on...

  • Family and Others Looking for Help!!!

  • We hired an advocate this summer for our middle schooler, but feel that it is a lot of money for what we are getting. We just would like someone who would answer questions we can have once in a while, but in an immediate way because sometimes it's urgent...does anyone know of someone/somewhere we can get those kind of services? Thank you!!

    My 26 yo son is looking for a room to rent near Miramar or Mesa Junior College.
    He is high functioning ASD, quiet, no drinking or drugs. Does not drive so needs to be near public transportation. Ideal living situation would be with 1 or 2 similar young adults. Thank you! 858-837-2355

    Hi any advice on adaptive pe.....there trying to take away the rooms at my son's middle school to give to the drama club. What can I do as a parent?

    I'm looking for a part time communication partner (CP) for my teenage son who uses supportive typing to communicate. CP must have English as a first language. Must have a working knowledge of high school academic curriculum. Must be familiar with software such as Word and PowerPoint. Must be eligible to work in the United States. Must have current LiveScan. Experience with Facilitated Communication preferred.
    Please email me at if interested or want more details.

    Hi Everyone,
    I have 10 years old nonverbal Autistic son. I will be Home schooling him but I am having hard time with Curriculum. I am looking for something ABA based, to teach him daily life skills etc. He is/ was not able to learn anything Academic.we live in La Mesa CA Thanks.

    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.

  • 15th annual San Diego Race for Autism Superhero 5K in Balboa Park
  • On Saturday, April 6, 2019, we are celebrating the 15th annual San Diego Race for Autism Superhero 5K in Balboa Park.

    This family friendly event attracts thousands of local SUPERHEROES, big and small, to Balboa Park each year and directly supports children with autism and their families in San Diego. To date, the Race has funded more than 900 community programs and classrooms.

    Check out our website for all that NFAR does for families in San Diego!!!

    Sign Up Today and be a HERO for those with autism, Race for Autism 2019!

  • Teen Social Skills Group
  • Reduced Fees and Scholarships Available!!!
    Contact Family Wellness Center at 858-634-8300 or email

  • MSNC Free Webinar Series: What Will My Child do After Highschool?
  • The webinar will air on January 22nd at 12:00 noon and will repeat on January 24th at 7:00pm.

    Learn about tech-training programs, college options and support. Also learn about group homes and supported living.

    Speaker is Josh D. Feder, MD, Child and Family Psychiatry

    For all the info and to register please go to:

  • Parent Support Group in La Mesa
  • Contact Family Wellness Center at 858-634-8300 or email

  • Yvette M. Soto Accounting & Income Tax
  • I offer professional accounting services that are customized to your specific needs, including full service computerized bookkeeping, payroll and tax preparation for individuals and small to medium sized businesses.

    Services Provided:

    • Bookkeeping Services
    • Business Consulting
    • Payroll Preparation
    • Income Tax Return Preparation
    • Notary Public Services
    Customer service is my number one priority. I like to work closely with my clients to make sure they understand how their business is doing.

    As a small business owner it is important that you spend your time on running your business and not on bookkeeping. Let me give you the peace of mind you deserve by utilizing my 20+ years of diversified experience in accounting and in business.

    I graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Accounting from the University of San Diego and have more than 20 years of experience in accounting. Before opening up my business I worked as a Staff Accountant for several local CPA firms. I was also was an Accountant/Office Manager for an owner operator of 20+ McDonald's franchises, a Controller of a manufacturing company, an Accounting Manager for a home builder and was in charge of running a local bookkeeping and income tax firm. I am also a Notary Public and speak Spanish.

    I can navigate the tax ramifications of receiving public benefits and credits for special needs because I have twins with Autism. This allows me to provide a very personal level of service because I understand the needs of these families. I enjoy volunteering for local Autism charities and mentor families of newly diagnosed children.

    Call to setup an appointment for a free initial consultation so that I can evaluate your bookkeeping needs and provide you with a quote.

    Yvette M. Soto Accounting & Income Tax
    3633 Camino Del Rio South, Suite 205
    San Diego, CA. 92108
    Phone (619) 977-6586

  • Community ConNext
  • This new program, Community ConNext, is a non-profit community-based transition ABA program for teens and emerging young adults with developmental disabilities ages 12-22. This program is dedicated to providing services that instill community-wide inclusion of individuals of all abilities.

    Our mission at Community ConNext is to provide teens and emerging young adults with developmental disabilities opportunities to build and generalize transition skills needed to Connect with their communities while ushering the Next stage of their lives.

    Community ConNext will serve teens and young adults transitioning into whatever life milestone comes next for them - whether middle school to high school or high school to adulthood. Our ultimate goal is to utilize evidence-based practices to offer our participants the support necessary to transition into the next stage of their lives while opening up more opportunities of choice and maximizing their independence.

    CTA's Community ConNext has two locations to serve you!!!
    625 Pennsylvania Ave
    San Diego, Ca 92172
    12348 Casa Avenida
    Poway, CA 92064

  • FDA Approved Therapy for Anxiety
  • Safer Than Prescription Medication for Anxiety and ADHD/ADD and the Effects are Permanent!

    Microcurrent 4 Kids is San Diego's premiere pediatric microcurrent therapy program for children, teens and adults with special needs. Our program is the BEST therapy for Autism & ADHD, as you will see by the rapid improvement in your child's skills and abilities, because of how well it promotes developmental growth and couples with ALL other therapies.

    Some of the neuro-developmental issues we commonly see include:

    • Autism/Asperger's
    • ADD/ADHD
    • Sensory Processing Disorder
    • Anxiety
    • Depression
    • Developmental Delay
    • Epilepsy
    • And many more!
    Call 858-367-9108 for your free consultation!!!

    Microcurrent 4 Kids
    4540 Kearny Villa Road, Ste. 211
    San Diego, CA 92123

  • Science-based Social Group
  • Reduced Fees and Scholarships Available!!!
    Contact Family Wellness Center at 858-634-8300 or email

  • Autistic Adult Social Group
  • Hosted by Autism Society San Diego
    Saturday, January 5, 2019 at 6 PM - 8 PM
    Autism Society San Diego Office
    4699 Murphy Canyon Rd, San Diego, California 92123

    Join us for our Autistic Adult Social Group! We will meet at our office at the United Way Building in San Diego. We will have a separate space for caregivers and support people to meet as well.

    This group is a place for autistic adults to come together for support and understanding. Make new friends, share questions and concerns, and get support from your peers, in a non judgmental and accepting atmosphere. This group is a open to all adults with autism as well as any support people that you require to participate successfully. We look forward to seeing you!

  • ATPF Teen Time Event - Tour a US NAVY Ship
  • Hosted by Autism Tree Project Foundation
    Saturday, January 5, 2019 at 11 AM - 2 PM
    Autism Tree Project Foundation Office
    2845 Nimitz Blvd, San Diego, California 92106

    Join our ATPF Teen Time Program for a private tour of a US NAVY Ship. The tour will provide a walk through of an active warship showing off weapons systems used during war, how the ship is navigated and what happens when Marines come onboard for deployment. There will be a sandwich bar, chips and water provided and a questions and answer session at the end of the tour. This tour is designed for teens/young adults ages 13+years old. There will be 3 chaperones to give the tour. This event will max out at 15 teens.

    We will also meet at ATPF and carpool over to the ship together!

    To sign up for this event, please call 619-222-4465 or email

  • Adult Group for Individuals with Asperger-Like Thinking
  • San Diego Center for Children
    Family Wellness Center
    680 Fletcher Pkwy #202
    El Cajon, CA 92020
    Please call for all the info: (858) 634-8300

  • Family Wellness Center Youth Programs
  • Reduced Fees and Scholarships Available!!!
    Contact Family Wellness Center at 858-634-8300 or email

  • Sports Camp Starting in March 2019
  • Reduced Fees and Scholarships Available!!!
    Contact Family Wellness Center at 858-634-8300 or email

  • Jeremiah's Ranch January Newsletter
  • Click here to read their January edition for all the news and upcoming events!

  • 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

  • City of San Diego Park & Recreation Therapeutic Recreation Services Program

  • The City of San Diego Park & Recreation Therapeutic Recreation Services program provides sports, recreation, leisure and outreach services to people with physical, mental and emotional disabilities.

    Services include therapeutic recreation programs and adaptive sports opportunities. These address the special needs of individuals with disabilities who have difficulty accessing and participating in recreation opportunities offered to the general public.

    Under the direction of Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialists, activities and services are designed to maintain or improve the physical, cognitive and social functioning of those who have limitations. The target population is children and adults, ages 3 and up, with any type of disability.

    For additional questions about Therapeutic Recreation Services, please call 619-525-8247.

    Click here to view their 2018-2019 newsletter and calendar of events!!!

  • "Autism Through the Lifespan" Monthly Parent Support and Information Meetings

  • October 2018 - May 2019
    PLNU Graduate Education
    4007 Camino Del Rio South - Fourth Floor
    San Diego, CA 92108

    Please join other parents, caregivers and professionals at the following monthly informational and support group meetings in Mission Valley. These meetings will discuss the various aspects of autism through the lifespan. Each meeting will feature an expert speaker and an ASA parent mentor. This is a time for you to meet other parents, ask questions and network.
    The meetings are free and open to all.

    Please RSVP for Spanish Translation support
    For further information, please contact:
    Lisa Larsson - (619) 725-8080 ext. 7946 email:
    Maryann Collins - email:
    Grace Fantaroni, Ed.D. - (619) 563-2839 email:

  • Participate in Research!!! Can a Safe 'Fever' Help Autism Syptoms? Spanish Speakers Welcome!!!
  • null

    Can a Safe 'Fever' Help AUTISM Symptoms?

    Una 'Fiebre' Para Disminuir los Sintomas de AUTISMO? 

    Pilot Study Enrollment

    This pilot study will enroll 12 families with ASD children ages 2-17 years old in a controlled study, in the San Diego and Los Angeles areas. We are testing a dry heat therapy from an FDA-cleared medical device with simulates the effect of a low-grade fever by non-invasively infusing heat into the circulatory system. The Fielding Graduate University IRB approved study is entitiled: "The Fever Effect: Do kids with autism do better when they use a device to warm their blood? Effects of six-week AVACEN Treatment Method on Autism Spectrum Disorder".

    If you are interested in participating in this pilot study please contact Frances Poteet at and provide your phone number, email address, zip code and best time to reach you so that we can contact you. If you are not selected as part of this pilot study, you may be offered an opportunity to participate in a larger study of the device at a later date.

    Participants who complete the entire study will receive a $200 Amazon gift card. Enrolling now! Limited openings available!

    We can offer services in English and Spanish (all the way from the Orientation throughout the course of the study.)

  • Participate in Research: Caregiver/Family Member Survey
  • business_finance_research.jpg

    My name is Richie Sapp. My twin brother, Mikey, has been attending the TERI day program for several years now. I am a third-year medical student (MS3) at Stanford School of Medicine where I am currently taking a research year to focus my efforts in medical education, specifically to improve patient care for individuals with disabilities. I am creating an elective course for medical students/PA students for Winter Quarter 2018/19 and I could use your help.

    Please consider completing this first survey and if your son/daughter would like to complete the second survey on their own, I would welcome that too.

    1) This survey is for parents/caregivers of individuals with disabilities. Caregiver/Family Member Survey, which will help me with what content to put together for the course. Please feel free to share the survey with anyone who might be interested in sharing their experiences. Here is the link:

    2) Additionally, if you know anyone with a disability who would like to speak about their own experiences, there is a separate survey for individuals with disabilities. The link is below:

    Thank you so much for all your support!

    Please email me if you have any questions.

    Thank you,
    Richie Sapp

  • Brain Imaging Studies for all Ages with or without Autism

  • The Brain Development Imaging Labs at San Diego State University are looking for individuals with diagnosed or suspected autism to participate in a brain imaging study. Participants would receive around $150 plus free cognitive testing and an MRI scan. Child participants would receive a free assessment summary and image of their brain as a bonus! We are looking to recruit from all ages, but we especially need adults, ages 40-65 years, to participate. If you know someone who might be a good fit for our study, please share this information with them. Thank you.

    At SDSU!!! To find out more, please call 619-594-0176 or email BDIL@SDSU.EDU.


    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.