June 15, 2018  News and events for the Minnesota autism community.

1st Annual AuSM Connections Jigsaw Puzzle Competition July 21 at Mall of America
Are you ready to take on the nation's biggest puzzle competition challenge? Put your jigsaw puzzling passion to the test during the first annual AuSM Connections Jigsaw Puzzle Competition held at the Mall of America Rotunda on Saturday, July 21. Gather your friends and family into teams of four that will compete for the fastest puzzle completion time. Puzzle team divisions include Adult and Family. All experience levels are welcome! Proceeds will support Autism Society of Minnesota programs and services for our local autism community.

Adult Division (four players 18+; $50 per team; 1,000-piece puzzle)
9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Family Division (encouraged to have at least one player under 18; $50 per team; 300-piece puzzle)
1-3 p.m.

Prizes will be awarded in both divisions to the three teams completing their puzzle in the quickest time. Teams will keep their competition puzzle created by PuzzleTwist®.

Canvas Health presents Helping Kids Grow Through Challenges: Understanding Brains and Tailoring Treatments
On July 23, Canvas Health clinicians Andrew Ballew, PsyD and Jessica Miller, MA will present on treatment strategies for children with autism, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

At the workshop, participants will explore best interventions and supports for the child in your care, and how assessments identify factors such as IQ, memory, executive functioning, and learning capacity. Additionally, the presenters will address problems with coping, behavior problems, social skills, and adaptive skills and how family relationships, social supports, and culture can improve results and promote healthy development.

This workshop is open to clinicians, parents and educators. CEUs will be available.  The workshop will be held Monday, July 23, 7:30-10:30 a.m. at Dellwood Country Club in Dellwood, Minn. Click here for more information and to register.
AuSM Self-Advocacy Summit for adults on the spectrum registration open
The first annual AuSM Self-Advocacy Summit presented by Anime Twin Cities will take place Sept. 22, 2018 at the University of St. Thomas Minneapolis campus and will include a keynote presentation and nine breakout sessions featuring topics including mental health, executive functioning, sensory needs, employment, relationships, and more. This event is for adults with autism by adults with autism. In addition to gathering wisdom from life experiences by adults on the spectrum, collect resources from the AuSM Bookstore, network with peers, and visit with vendors who support adults on the spectrum.

Golf at Royal Golf Club to support the local autism community
Join the Autism Society of Minnesota and avid Minnesota golfers for the 23rd Annual AuSM Golf Classic, a fundraising event for the local autism community. Held Aug. 6 at its new location, the new Royal Golf Club course in Lake Elmo, Minn., this amazing golf classic is sure to be the best Monday of your summer!

Rolling hills, mature trees and abundant wildlife provide the scenic backdrop to the challenging, yet approachable 18-hole course. The front nine, or the Queen's Nine, was designed by Annika Sorenstam, and the back nine, known as the King's Nine, was designed by Arnold Palmer. Together, these golf legends envisioned a multi-generational golfing experience; a place where beginners would feel comfortable in learning, and where experienced players could test their skills.

Thank you to our 2018 sponsors, including Clubhouse Sponsor, Built on Bravery, an organization that focuses on health and fitness training for special needs athletes. Additional sponsors include: Allegra Downtown St. Paul; McNellis and Asato, Ltd.; Minnesota Autism Center; Marty Lass, PGA Professional; MJT & Associates, LLC Financial Advisor Group; Viewpoint; and Fox Sports North. Sponsorships are available! Click here for more information.
Vitals app now available for FREE
The Autism Society of Minnesota is pleased to announce that Vitals™ is being offered FREE of charge to individuals and caregivers in Minnesota. Vitals™ is an opt-in, app-based technology that provides first responders and police with real-time information about vulnerable individuals living with emotional, intellectual, and developmental disabilities. Click here for more  information.
Cool down at the sensory-friendly hour at Waterworks
Ramsey County is partnering with AuSM for sensory-friendly time at Battle Creek Waterworks. The first will be this Monday, June 18 at 11 a.m., and the second offering will be on Thursday, Aug. 16 at 11 a.m. The sensory-friendly hour will include earplugs and a quiet place with fidget spinners and other toys. To help plan for attending, a social narrative and more information is available at this link:  ramseycounty.us/waterworks .
Presented by Jason Schellack from Autism Advocacy & Law Center, LLC

Dear Jason:

I've heard there are different kinds of trusts available to help individuals with disabilities. What is the difference between a special needs trust and a supplemental needs trust? Is one better than the other?

- Planning for the Future
Dear Planning for the Future:

Special needs trusts and supplemental needs trusts both are great financial tools to help individuals with disabilities. Assets in either trust  do not count toward an individual's asset limits for government benefits. You can have an unlimited amount of money in either trust, and the individual still will qualify for government benefits. The big differences are where the money in the trust comes from and what happens to the remainder when the beneficiary passes. With a special needs trust, the trust is funded by assets that belong to the beneficiary themselves, and at the end of the beneficiary's life, any remainder goes to Medical Assistance. With a supplemental needs trust, the trust is funded by anyone  other than the beneficiary, and at the end of the beneficiary's life, the remainder goes to whomever the parents or caregiver names in the trust. In general, a supplemental needs trust is the preferable trust, because it avoids paying Medical Assistance back for the value of services received over the beneficiary's lifetime.

For more information, visit the Autism Advocacy & Law Center, LLC website.
2018 AuSM Summer Activities Catalog 
AuSM classes and activities offer low-stress, accepting environments that promote learning and growth while celebrating neurodiversity. AuSM programs are conducive to youth and adults who fall within the wide range of the autism spectrum. Call 651.647.1083 ext. 22 or e-mail   education@ausm.org for more information. 

The following classes have just a few openings remaining:
Lowry Nature Center (ages 13-18)
Toneworks Art Camp (ages 10-21)
2018 AuSM Summer Social Skills classes in Duluth 
AuSM is pleased to partner with the Lake Superior Zoo and the Great Lakes Aquarium to offer two exciting social skills classes for youth with autism. 

July 23-27, 2018 from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.

July 30-Aug. 2, 2018 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
AuSM Autism Direct Support Certification
AuSM's Autism Direct Support Certification Program is designed for professionals and caregivers who work with or support individuals with autism and want to provide better service and care. This in-depth, 15-hour course will give practical solutions for working with people on the spectrum. Class includes final case study and test.

Sept. 14, 21, 28; Oct. 5, 12, 2018
9 a.m.-12 p.m.
AuSM Skillshops

Oct. 16, 2018 from 7-9 p.m.
Special Needs & Special Sibs: A Family AuSM Skillshop
Presenter: Jennifer S. Reinke, PhD, LAMFT, CFLE
Location: St. David's Center

"Autism doesn't just affect my kid, it affects our whole family," a mother of an 8-year-old child with autism said. Explore the unique challenges, rewards, and dynamics experienced by families impacted by a variety of special needs. Special emphasis will be placed on the experiences and needs of siblings (ages 10+) who have a brother or sister with special needs. All family members are welcome at this AuSM Skillshop.


The 2018-2019 AuSM Skillshop line-up will be announced soon!
Autism Society of Minnesota supporters sustain the work that has helped so many in the Minnesota autism community. AuSM's drive for continuing this work is strong - we constantly look for ways to serve you even better. 100% of donations stay in the Minnesota autism community, and every dollar counts. We appreciate your generosity, and we look forward to continuing to be your resource for autism programs and services.

In partnership with area businesses and organizations, AuSM is pleased to offer monthly opportunities for families and individuals with autism to come together and enjoy fun activities in supportive, welcoming environments. 

Autism Society of Minnesota | 651.647.1083 | info@ausm.org |   www.ausm.org

Established in 1971, the Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to education, advocacy and support designed to enhance the lives of those affected by autism from birth through retirement. AuSM does not sell or share the contact information of our members, volunteers, donors, or supporters.

Autism Society of Minnesota, 2380 Wycliff St. #102,  St. Paul, MN 55114