The Autism Society Philippines (ASP) is a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the well-being of persons with autism spectrum disorder. The ASP has been in the forefront of providing services and training to families living with autism.

24 April 2014

CWA explores Science at the Mind Museum

ASP UP CAMP Manila families (6 CWA, 2 grandmothers, 3 mothers, 1 father, 2 guardians, 4 siblings) visited The Mind Museum for a chance to explore science as a community last 03 April 2014. The activity allowed the CWA families some time to bond, and let the kids explore more of the world.

The children with autism, their guardians and their siblings had a great time scouring each portion of the museum. Some of the exhibits caught the attention of some CWAs (like the rotating kaleidoscope, sounds of space, spinning tunnel) so much that they would go back to it again and again. Since the museum is interactive, the families were free to try each exhibit. There were also short movies in the planetarium and in mini theater that teaches about outer space and Earth’s history. Before and after the tour of the museum, the participants also played at the Science in the Park playground where the kids enjoyed the different slides, bubble machines and other displays. “Visitors learn science by rediscovering anew, through play, the wonder of nature’s elements: sunlight, wind, water and greenery. The park consists of four main play pockets: Water, Math, Music, and Living.”

April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD). Children with autism are not meant to be locked up in their houses. We parents need to expose them to the community, to learn more of the world and the people around them. Through interactions with these kids can we understand them more.

This article is a contribution of Jenette Rodriguez , Secretary of ASP UP Camp.

23 April 2014

PWD Convention: PWeDe Nating Gawin

The National Council on Disability Affairs (NCDA), in partnership with Miriam College and the United States Embassy Manila, held a conference on enriching education and empowerment for persons with disabilities (PWD) on 22 February 2014 at the Marian Auditorium of Miriam College, Quezon City.

Titled “PWeDe Natin Gawin!”, the conference gathered together a diversity of people from the education, industry, and disability sectors in a forum that aimed to discuss best practices and experiences in education, poverty reduction, employment, accessibility, and inclusion for PWD.

The conference was graced by resource speakers from both the public and private sectors. Among them was Dr. Cecilio Pedro, Lamoiyan Corporation President and CEO, who discussed the value and responsibilities of PWD in the workplace and emphasized the importance of skills-based training. Dr. Wendy Ashby, a professor from the US who has been sent on various missions, discussed the importance of connecting with different cultures, particularly the PWD culture, and understanding the world from their perspectives.

Also present to discuss their experiences and insights were members and stakeholders of the disability sector, namely: US Ambassador Philip Goldberg; NCDA Executive Director Carmen Zubiaga; Atty. Jesusa Magbanua of the Office of the Solicitor General; Dr. Rosario Lapus and Dr. Ronaldo Motilla, President and Wellness Center Head of Miriam College, respectively; Dianne Salazar of the Link Center for the Deaf; and Fiel John Meria and Susan Pe of the AD/HD Society of the Philippines; among others.

During one of the fora at the conference, yours truly had the opportunity to ask questions to the speakers. I directed at John Meria, himself an AD/HD self-advocate and a brother to a teenager on the autism spectrum, an issue I believe is facing the developmental disability sector: amid the proliferation of self-advocates with physical disabilities, there are only a handful of self-advocates with developmental disabilities.

John discussed that there is indeed a very small but growing population of individuals like ourselves, and that there is a big opportunity for our respective organizations to cultivate and develop self-advocates. After the conference, John and I, together with another AD/HD self-advocate Nikki Pe, discussed a possibility of a self-advocates’ alliance. At the time of writing, we have been joining hands and gathering our fellows in the aim of setting the direction of our advocacy.

It was a spark of a new hope for autism and other developmental disabilities that despite the apparent negative perceptions of our respective conditions, there is a great outlook in the trend of individuals with developmental disabilities to be able to speak out and advocate for ourselves, all toward acceptance. This conference has proven its title correct: Yes, we can. PWeDe Nating Gawin!

This article is a contribution of Gerard Joseph Atienza, Secretary of ASP Bacoor Chapter and an adult with autism.

16 April 2014

"Great 8" Strategies for Language Deficits of PWAs

This moderated viewing of a 120-minute webcast will explore the topic area necessary for family members and speech-language pathologists to possess in order to provide effective and evidenced-based interventions for children with autism spectrum disorder.

This session will tackle the "great 8" strategies for addressing the core deficits of autism spectrum disorder:  assessment, reinforcement, visual supports, sensory, social skills, teamwork, and comprehensive planning.

Parents and speech-language pathologists must have knowledge and skills on core characteristics of autism, working with families, screening, diagnosis, and assessment, evidenced-based interventions, use of augmentative and alternative communication modalities, and collaboration (ASHA, 2006b). This presentation will address these specific areas by introducing audience participants to specific interventions and methodologies to increase their skills and knowledge in the area of ASD.

The following teaching methodologies will be:

1. Behavior-based intervention
2. Collaboration within a multi-disciplinary team
3. Use of visual supports
4. Incorporating sensory strategies

Ms. Lynn M. Dudek M.S., CCC-SLP/MBA is the Autism and Medical Rehabilitation Manager at Easter Seals Central and SE Ohio, Inc and the owner of ASDSLP, LLC. She is a speech-language pathologist who has specialized in the treatment of autism spectrum disorder for close to 20 years. Lynn has presented at the local, state, and national level on topics regarding autism, communication and assessment. Her passion for advocacy, education, and effective treatment directs her professional and personal activities.

Lynn recently completed coursework for completion of her BCBA. She currently serves on the Ohio Autism Coalition, the Autism Alliance and Advisory Board for, and the National Autism Spokesperson Network.

Ms. Michele LaMarche, BCBA is the co-founder of Special Learning, Inc. She is also the founder and Executive Director of Step By Step Academy (SBSA), a highly-regarded centre-based non-profit Autism treatment centre in Columbus, Ohio. Since its formation almost ten years ago, SBSA has touched the lives of over one thousand students through rigorous application of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) treatments, resulting in exceptional outcomes.

Michele, with over fifteen years of professional experience in the field of ABA, uses her knowledge of behavioral treatment to produce ground breaking, effective, empirically validated curricula, a critical factor in successfully mainstreaming hundreds of students with ASD. With her credentials and work through Special Learning and SBSA, she has changed the lives of countless individuals and families affected by ASD.

Seminar Details

26 April 2014, Saturday
9:00 am- 12:00 noon
Technical Enablement Center,
2nd Floor IBM Plaza, Eastwood,
Quezon City (Map)

Register online today!  Pre-registration fee is P500 (up to April 22). On-site registration fee is P600. ASP Members get a discount of P100.  Seminar Fee is inclusive of a certificate, handouts and snacks.

All participants will receive a signed hard-copy certificate of completion from ASP. Participants may also order from the training provider, as an OPTIONAL service, a certificate of completion issued by Special Learning Incorporated, signed by the trainer; but delivered in PDF form via email, for an ADDITIONAL cost of P400.

Pre-registered participants may pay to Autism Society Philippines, Metro Bank, Kamias Branch Account Number 047-3-04751874-2. Please fax the deposit slip with the name/s of participant/s to ASP office and bring it on the day of the seminar. On-site registrants will be accepted depending on the availability of slots. There will only be 70 slots available. No refund will be given to participants who did not show up on the date of the seminar. For more details, please call ASP at 02-926-6941 or 02-929-8447.

The ASP Education and Empowerment Program serves as a platform to educate Filipino parents and professionals on the various interventions, modalities and theories surrounding Autism Spectrum Disorder. Their application and implementation are left at your discretion. The views and personal experiences of the speakers are their own and may not necessarily reflect the views of the organization.

13 April 2014

ASP Pasay Lakbay-Aral to ASP Laguna

ASP Pasay Chapter celebrated World Autism Awareness Day by conducting a Lakbay-Aral at ASP Resource Center in Los BaƱos, Laguna last 01 April 2014.

There were 51 participants composed of parents, children with autism, siblings and caregivers who enjoyed the delicious lunch prepared in the diner with the help of the salaried PWAs in the center. The visitors were treated to a guided tour where the ASP Laguna Chapter President Ms. Catherine L. Lopez explained the different sections in the center, like the art shop where students make and sell crafts.

Their Autism Resource Center is also an ideal place to hone the skills of PWAs at the same give them job opportunities to make them respectable and worthy members of the community.

12 April 2014

ASP Catanduanes - GOTIS partner for an assessment mission

(This article is a contribution of Pattie Kozma, ASP Catanduanes Chapter Vice President)

Representatives of Group of Therapist in the South or GOTIS arrived in the island of Catanduanes on 21 March 2013 for a much-awaited assessment and evaluation mission, jointly organized with ASP Catanduanes Chapter. Mr. Erwin P. Bote, Mr Mike Kelvin T. Esguerra and Ms Hardecyl C. Quiron headed to the Juan Alberto Memorial Elementary School.

Ms. Jeniffer Torres assisted the participants from various barangays -- MSWO officers, SPED teachers, volunteers, physicians, parents -- for the seminar; while Ms. Liza Molod and Ms. Irene Borja prepared the GOTIS to meet with the 55 patients, whose cases varied from autism to cerebral palsy, from intellectual disabilities to other conditions. Screening of each patient, did not fall short of their commitment, as they carefully showed the parents/guardians exercises and follow through methods.

Much to our surprise, the National President of ASP, Ms Janet Pena paid our mission a visit. Apparently she had it planned to bring her kids on a short trip and part of that trip involved visiting the Island -- a very heartwarming and humbling gesture.

Our three-day assessment and evaluation mission came to an end, just as the dark clouds brought rain to the island. But as we move on to progressing on the work that has begun, the angels who made this mission a reality deserve our community’s gratitude.

  • Mr. Erwin P. Bote, Mr. Mike Kelvin T. Esguerra and Ms. Hardecyl C. Quiron of GOTIS
  • Ms. Cynthia Soneja, Ms. Liza Molod & Ms. Irene Borja of JMAMES
  • Mr. Mariano Deguzman, Deped OIC-ASDS
  • Governor Araceli Wong, Vice Governor Bong Teves & SP Councilors Ms. Shirley Abundo, Dr. Alvin Ravallo, Ms. Gina Pantino, Ms. Kristine Gamil, Mr. Victor Laynes, Mr. John Laynes and Mr. Alex Santos for sponsoring the indigent children
  • Mr. Victor Bernal and Ms. Evelyn Teves of ARDCI INN
  • Ms. Jeniffer Torres for assisting in preparation of the mission and itinerary
  • Dra. Abella, Dra. Arcilla and Ms. Gie Laynes of Sea Breeze Resto for the lunch and dinner
  • Mr. & Mrs. Donato for the tour to Bato and Puraran
  • Ms. Kristine Arcilla Gamil for the tour at Mamangal Beach

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