News Week of May 11


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You hear a lot about how hard it has been on us moms during COVID. From being the home school mom, to the short order cook, to working mom, to the behaviorist designing visual schedules – we have taken multi-tasking to new levels during this crisis. 

But if you really press me, it hasn’t been all bad. I’ve heard my son with autism sing to his speech therapist over Zoom that brought a smile to my busy work day, had long chats with my other son about the wizarding world as he finishes the Harry Potter series (which never happens), and enjoyed evening walks with my husband, waving to neighbors we’ve never seen before.

Yes, Mother’s Day 2020 will always be the year of the pandemic when schools closed in the spring, camps closed in the summer (most likely), and the unknown loomed over us for the fall. But I hope to also remember that being cooped up together in the house also brought some new experiences our family doesn’t have time to always enjoy, as one boy soon transitions to adult services, and the other one looks to his final year in high school before college.

Time is still marching on – COVID or not – and enjoying those little things is as important as ever. Maybe more so.

Stay healthy and well friends,

Laurie and Team


We are excited to welcome ASGA's newest team member, Moriah DeJacimo from Warren, Ohio! Moriah recently graduated from Kent State University with a degree in marketing and will be ASGA's Communications Coordinator.

Moriah comes with a lot of passion and a big heart for all members of the disability community. She also is very talented in the arts and active within her church community. We look forward to having Moriah on our team!

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BITESIZE DISCUSSION #6:Parenting children with exceptional needs through a pandemic:The good, the challenging, and the uncertain!

Wednesday, May 13 • 8:00 PM • Zoom Webinar • Registration Required

Dr. Jessica Emick, Clinical Psychologist and School Psychologist at Total Education Solutions will discuss proactive, positive, and actionable family-care strategies to successfully adapt to the disruption of normal routine.

Join us for sharing common experiences and ways families can successfully adapt in these trying times with real life examples and strategies. Registration HERE

Take away from Bite #5:Thank you to ASGA board member and attorney, Debra Shifrin, for sharing the ins-and-outs of Social Security Income (SSI). Debra reviewed the criteria for SSI for children under 18, and for adults, and suggested a separate bank account for direct deposit for adults so checks are not jeopardized during shut downs. See Debra’s “Bite Size” presentation HERE.

Peer-to-Peer Support Groups

ASGA's Step Into Autism - Virtual • OPEN FOR REGISTRATION! 

Saturday, June 13th – Saturday, June 27

Over 70 individuals are ALREADY showing their support by registering for this year's virtual walk and FUNdraising on behalf of the Autism Society of Greater Akron. THANK YOU!

Don't wait too long...register and create your team HERE! Set a goal, get your friends and family involved, and let's make a difference together!

Find unique VIRTUAL fundraising ideas HERE!

And remember, every little bit helps support individuals and families living with autism in our community! 

register here



ASGA is pleased to partner with Catalyst Farm to give you a virtual introduction to some friends on the farm. Meet the animals, learn fun facts, and do some crafts. You can even submit a picture, letter or drawing to any of the animals and get a reply!

Check HERE for a new video each Tuesday and Thursday beginning Thursday, May 14.  See you on the farm!

storytime readYOU ARE WORTH IT – Build your Resilience!

Resilience: the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness...

Have you been taking care of you, lately? ASGA wants to make sure you know we care about you and we are here for you!

Sarah Buffie at Songbird Consulting will provide two-minute tips daily in our Closed Facebook Group on how to regulate our emotions and to help us return to a calm and balanced state. Join the group HERE 


Coffee, Tea and Autism Closed Facebook Support Group now has over 100 group members. This is a chance to meet Outreach Specialist, Wendy Cline, as she offers up to date and reliable resources, great tips and tricks and pleasant conversation to help us all survive the quarantine life! If you are not a member, make sure to join NOW!

Take a Break on ASGA addresses emergency needs of families with funding for respite support and a gift card to Giant Eagle or Walmart. Since its launch on Mar 27, this program has served over 200 families in all 5 of our counties (Medina, Portage, Stark, Summit and Wayne). If you need respite or food support, please let us know!

Operation Cheer is a simple gesture that involves making cards, or drawing a picture, sending words of encouragement to adults with disabilities who can’t leave their homes! Simply send your artwork to ASGA and we’ll distribute them to individuals and organizations in need of a pick-me-up. Over 100 cards have been delivered to four group homes. This is a great way for younger children and teens to connect with different abilities!

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on ASGA’s activities!


ASGA’s mission is as critical as ever, and even more so, as we face challenges in unprecedented times. A few of ASGA's Step Into Autism - Virtual teams have set up a variety of fundraisers on our behalf. Help us continue to deliver essential support, services, and advocacy, by making a donation or supporting these walk team events. 

Tuesday, May 12: Grab dinner and cocktails "to go" from 35 Brix, 3:00 - 7:00 PM! 20% of proceeds will go back to ASGA. Thank you Team Pauli's Posse! Make sure to mention your order is for the ASGA fundraiser. Location and Menu Options HERE.

Wednesday, May 27: Grab Dinner at the Chipotle in the Arlington Ridge Market Place in Akron; 33% of proceeds will go back to ASGA! Make sure to download the flyer HERE.

Saturday, June 27: Autism Poker Run Hosted by Rusted Iron Motorcycle Clan! All are welcome and raffle tickets available NOW! HERE for more information.

Are ordering from Amazon as much as ASGA staff? Make sure to log into Amazon Smile and choose the Autism Society Greater Akron as your charity. It’s the same products, but ASGA receives a percentage back for your order.  Please consider supporting ASGA!

What's Going on in the Community? 

Newsworthy information from Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) Standards of Care for Vulnerable Populations

Create a Time Capsule to tell the story of COVID-19. Check out the activity book HERE!

Milestones National Autism Conference went virtual! June 11-16. HERE for more information!

Wearing a Mask: Social Story for encouraging kids to wear them in the upcoming weeks. Thank you, State Support Team Region 8!

About the Autism Society of Greater Akron

The Autism Society of Greater Akron (ASGA) is one of more than 80 affiliates nationwide that are part of the Autism Society of America, the nation’s largest and oldest grassroots autism organization. ASGA serves Summit, Stark, Wayne, Portage, and Medina counties. ASGA works locally to achieve its mission to improve the lives of all affected by autism.

ASGA is also a proud member of the Ohio Family Network (OFN), connecting people with disabilities and their families to local information and resources within their communities.  We believe OFN provides opportunities to share ideas, find solutions to common challenges and inspire and strengthen each other.



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