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.

15 December 2014

Angels Walk For Autism 2015: Aim High! Fly High!

The Angels Walk for Autism 2015 in on! 

Join an estimated 12,000 participants amplify the message of autism awareness and inclusion. ASP chapters, families, friends and advocates are invited to pre-register for the event to facilitate the release of tickets. Those who register early will be entitled to special perks.



Our community is also to attempt to set a Guinness Book of World Record on the largest crowd wearing wings. Register your group for the competition for a chance to win P25,000!

“Autism Inclusive Philippines: Aim High! Fly High!” is the theme of the 2015 Philippine National Autism Consciousness Week. The Autism Society Philippines continues to inspire awareness, acceptance and inclusion of persons with autism (PWAs) in society and to promote action by the public and private sectors towards enabling PWAs to live with dignity, enjoy equal rights and access, function independently and contribute productively.

For details and latest updates on the Philippine National Autism Consciousness Week 2015 will be posted on http://bit.ly/nacw-2015.

24 November 2014

ASP Sta. Rosa Conducts Free Therapy and Play

ASP Sta. Rosa conducted free therapy and play for persons with autism last 22 November 2014 at St. John Bosco Sta. Rosa, Laguna. Twenty eight children were given free occupational therapy assessment by Occupational Therapists (OT) from Creative Milestones and Learning Center, assisted by OT students from University of Perpetual Help.


Aside from the OT assessments, PWA's had fun doing yoga, arts and play activities. Free yoga mats, art materials and books were given to our PWA's. The parents and guardians also had support group talks while the PWA's were doing assessments and play. This outreach program aims to make therapy and play accessible to our PWA's in the community who have little access to such services.

ASP Sta. Rosa wishes to thank all our donors and friends for their generosity and support.
Special thanks to Creative Milestones Learning Center, University of Perpetual Help OT
students, Yusen Logistics volunteers, Mommy Chu Calleja, St John. Bosco Parish and
volunteers.


About the Contributor. Olive Medina is mom to CWA Enzo and his baby sister Lizzie. Aside from fulfilling her duties as a wife and mother, she works as General Manager for a logistics company, a part time college lecturer and part time yoga instructor. She is also the president of ASP Sta. Rosa Chapter.

23 November 2014

Perlita So leads family support group

ASP Auditor Ms. Perlita So facilitated a session with seven parents of children with autism at the ASP office in Quezon City last 22 November 2014. ASPs monthly family support group sessions bring together parents, siblings and other family members to talk about their journey in living with autism.


As usual, the participants shared their experiences and drew enlightenment and strength from others going through the same challenges:
“As my special child grows older, the more I cater to him. I learned a lot from the experience of the other parents in handling children with special needs.”

“I’m not alone in all these challenges. I can learn from other people’s experiences.”

“Children with autism need more understanding and more patience. Acceptance is key.”

To explore the many ways you can help your child with autism, join the Autism Society Philippines. 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. More at http://bit.ly/asp-join.


About the contributor. Lloyd Ngo worked as an ASP intern when he attended Independent Living and Learning Center. He began working in 2012 as an encoder at the Ongkiko Manhit Custodio and Acorda Law Offices in Makati. He is currently ASP’s Program Assistant for Communications.

22 November 2014

The rise of autism tech

The Autism Society Philippines was privileged to be among the forward-thinking organizations who participated in “The Era of Brain Technologies” delivered by Dr. Ned Sahin at the Mind Museum Taguig last 14 November 2014 -- part of a series of Executive Talks organized by First Pacific Leadership Academy. I was a parent-slash-advocate-slash-technologist among industry leaders, software developers, autism advocates and educators from ASP institutional members (such as Bridges Foundation, CARD, ILLC, Shine and TLC).


Dr. Ned Sahin is a neuroscientist and neurotechnology entrepreneur. He hold degrees in neuroscience from Williams College (BA), MIT (Master’s), and Harvard (PhD) and did a year of study at Oxford and post-doctoral fellowships at UCSD Medical School and the Salk Institute in San Diego.

Dr. Sahin’s talk first dealt with what current brain research today is making possible; and the great strides happening in wearable technology and implants, to monitor cognitive functions of individuals in high stress situations, such as soldiers; and to assist patients with disabilities correlated to reduced brain functions.

Dr. Sahim prefaced his talk on the work of Brain Power LLC with what many do not know about autism -- “There is no medical procedure that can test autism. There are no remarkable physiological differences in an autistic brain. Autism can be detected only through behavior.” I found endearing his compassionate understanding of autism and the effect the condition has on the person with autism and the family.

Dr. Sahin’s work on wearable technology for individuals with autism was the highlight of the afternoon. Using Google Glass (a computing eyewear with an optical head-mounted display and Google’s first attempt at mass-market ubiquitous technology), Dr. Sahin has developed software and hardware to help address the main deficits of autism and the needs of the family members and caregivers. His technology assists the individual with autism by developing attention span, tolerance to visual stimuli, metalinguistic skills, and capabilities for emotional decoding. The solution is able to address autism’s social and language deficits through its ability to quantify behavior (for example, percentage a PWA looks when his name is called) and count movement (such as blinking of the eyes or bowing of the head); through gamification that rewards desired behavior; through algorithms that analyze facial patterns; among many others.

Dr. Sahin showed videos of children and young adults with autism trying on the headgear for the first time and adapting with success; as well as images of Dr. Temple Grandin geeking out over this new technology.

So what lies in the future of autism tech? Dr. Sahin emphasized the role technology and the “internet of things” will play in the coming years, especially in terms of augmenting normal human cognitive abilities. He shared his excitement over the possibility of contextual, predictive and prescriptive analytics. Insight from large data sets captured by the Google glass can revolutionize how individuals with autism interact with the world and how the world understands autism.

We look forward to the day the technology becomes commercial and makes it to the Philippine shores!

*****
In celebration of the National Autism Consciousness Week in January 2015, the Autism Society Philippines is organizing a seminar on “Adaptive and Assistive Technologies for Persons with Autism.” Please watch for further announcements on our FB page and http://www.autismsocietyphilippines.org.

About the contributor.  Mona Magno-Veluz serves as the National President of the Autism Society Philippines and is a self-confessed technology "geek". She received degrees in Business Administration, Applied Economics and Strategic Marketing from the University of the Philippines Diliman, University of Asia and the Pacific and the London School of Business. Drawing from her experience as a corporate communications professional in multinational technology companies, she helped grow the national advocacy initiatives such as the 1Pangako campaign and the ASP Angel Corps. Her eldest is PWA Carl, a young man working in their family business and growing his budding entrepreneurial venture. This article first appeared in Mighty Magulang.

19 November 2014

ASP-NCDA continues partnership towards an autism inclusive Philippines

The Autism Society Philippines continues its commitment to inclusive development through active participation and partnership with the various government units from the local to national -- such as the National Council on Disability Affairs. The NCDA is the national government agency mandated to formulate policies and coordinate the activities of all agencies concerning disability issues. As such, the NCDA has become a valuable partner to help steer the course of program development for persons with autism and other exceptionalities and the delivery of services to the disability sector.


At the cusp of the commemoration of the International Day of PWDs in December 2014 and the National Autism Consciousness Week in January 2015, ASP National President Mona Magno-Veluz met one-on-one with Acting Executive Director Carmen Zubiaga last 07 November 2014 to review past engagements and align our future plans -- reinforcing both parties' continuous commitment to creating an autism inclusive Philippines.

ASP will continue to be strongly represented by ASP Vice President Alejandro Cabason, reinforced by the participation of ASP Trustee Marivic Ramos, in the NCDA sub-committees on 1) Access to Justice, 2) Accessibility on Built Environment and Transportation, 3) Advocacy, 4) Auxilliary Social Services, 5) Education, 6) Health, 7) Information, Communications and Technology, 8) International Disability Network, 9) Training, Employment and Livelihood.

*****

ASP leaders, members and volunteers who have strong professional credentials to contribute to the advocacy effort and who are able and willing to attend weekday meetings to represent our organization at a national level may send a letter of introduction and resume to ASP National President Mona Magno-Veluz at autismphils@gmail.com.

 
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