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Old February 9th, 2017, 08:05 AM   #661
Visionary7903 Male
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

The subject of recent posts has mainly been on Autism-related events and organisations in eastern Pennsylvania.

4 Paws for Ability is a Greene County, Ohio-based nonprofit that enriches the lives of children with various challenges, including Autism Spectrum Disorders, by training and placing quality, task-trained service dogs. This provides increased independence for the children, including in other areas like Pottsville, Pennsylvania...
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Matthew Peleschak is a cute 8-year-old boy with big plump cheeks and a love for his ipad and playing with a toy-slot machine with his little brother and sister

But despite that their brother is older, playing with him can be difficult.

And to show that the family loves Matthew, they're trying to get him a dog to help him. they've teamed up Four Paws For Ability, a nonprofit that provides trained dogs to children who live with disabilities. The average cost for a dog is about $22,000, of which, 7-thousand must be fundraised.

The dog would basically serve as both his best friend and guardian angel. It will help him live an independent life.

And to get the dog, the family is fundraising. They're selling handbags, marykay makeup and t-shirts online, local schools donate dress down day money to them, and even local resurants are helping out with penny jars

So far, the family has about $2,000, but thay piggy bank is quickly growing...
Here is a link to a video of the guide dog interacting with the above-mentioned boy and his family: https://www.facebook.com/matthew4paw...5723835024972/


Last edited by Visionary7903; February 11th, 2017 at 10:48 AM.
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Old February 11th, 2017, 10:50 AM   #662
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

The subject of recent posts has mainly been on Autism-related events and organisations in eastern Pennsylvania.

The SCAS is a Orwigsburg/Frackville, Pennsylvania-based nonprofit that has helped make life a little easier for those dealing with Autism Spectrum Disorders in the county for the past decade. The nonprofit's goal is to provide information, support and resources to individuals with autism and autism spectrum disorders, their families, professionals and community awareness activities, education and research...
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Several parents gathered Sunday to "compare scores," but everyone was a winner at the sixth annual Sensory Picnic hosted by the [SCAS].

"When parents of autistic kids get together, there's often a lot of sharing stories like someone learned how to ask for something or quoted something correctly or wash up on their own," Sasha Eidinov, Pottsville, said. "These are like our baseball scores. It may not seem like much, but it's the little accomplishments."

Eidinov was one of about 70 people - parents and children - who attended the picnic...

Judy Barket, society president and picnic organizer, said the event was held to allow children to meet some of their peers, socialize and experience new things.

"There were several interactive stations that allowed the children to get to do things that they might not otherwise do on their own," Barket said.

Jessica Mennig, Pottsville, a society board member, was responsible for a tie-dying station that she called an educational opportunity mixed with fun.

"It's stimulating and allows for color recognition and honing of fine motor skills," Mennig said.

Barket said the picnic, like other events and meetings the society holds, helps to foster a community.

"This allows parents to network and talk about common daily hurdles that we have," Barket said.

Jim ...Pfeiffenberger [and his wife] ...said that was one of the most important parts of the day for their family.

"It helps us to get ideas and exchange ideas, learn what might have worked for someone that may work for our child," [Mrs.] Pfeiffenberger said.

Mennig also said the more relaxed and informal atmosphere of the picnics, compared to society meetings, was helpful.

"They can relax, they can meet others and just socialize a little more naturally," Mennig said.

Eidinov ...thinks events like this help parents come together and celebrate their children.

"Everybody loves their kids," Eidinov said. "It's a great day for all of us to know we're not alone. We're not the only ones."

The society meets monthly...
Here is a link to photos of the SCAS' annual sensory picnic from over six years ago: republicanherald.mycapture.com/mycapture/folder.asp?iframe=1&event=1085068&CategoryID=52561/


Last edited by Visionary7903; July 1st, 2017 at 12:45 PM.
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Old February 16th, 2017, 11:11 AM   #663
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

The subject of recent posts has mainly been on Autism-related events and organisations in eastern Pennsylvania.

The Arc of Lehigh and Northampton Counties, based in the Lehigh Valley area of Pennsylvania, is a nonprofit whose mission is to advocate, educate, and provide services and support for people with various challenges, including children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. The Arc of Lehigh and Northampton Counties has hosted a 'Wings for Autism' event for the past couple of years...
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Families of autistic children will have an opportunity next month to practice air travel without ever leaving the ground.

The Arc of Northampton and Lehigh counties partnered with Lehigh Valley International Airport and Allegiant Air to organize "Wings for Autism." It's geared toward autistic children...

The event is based on a pilot program developed by the Arc of the United States and completed at large hubs across the country, including Logan International Airport in Boston, according to Bruce Seidel, development director for Arc of Lehigh and Northampton counties.

In planning since last November, Wings for Austism will be held May 9, and the program was at capacity within a day or two after registration opened, Seidel said. The event was limited to about 240 participants because it involves boarding a jet, he said.

Airline travel, particularly the lengthy security check process, is something that those with [various challenges including Autism Spectrum Disorders] can find very challenging, often preventing families from traveling, Seidel said. The Wings for Autism event will allow families to simulate the process of air travel, he said.

Families are scheduled to arrive at the Allegiant ticketing desk at 9 a.m. to begin the process. From there, they will go through a regular security screening process and make their way through the terminal.

Passengers will board an airplane that will taxi down a runway, offering as complete an experience as possible, Seidel said.

The event will include more than 40 volunteers to assist families along the way, offering information on how to handle certain situations. It could be something simple a family never considered, such as bringing along headphones to combat the noise associated with takeoff, Seidel said.

"In the event they plan to travel, this gives them real-life experience about where their family member, who has a disability, has trouble along the trail," he said.

There are many "moving parts" in organizing an event like this, and organizers are just trying to get through the first one, Seidel said. But based on the tremendous interest in this event, Arc is already considering a second program, he said.


...As the Lehigh Valley continues to evolve and become more diverse, programs like next month's Wings for Autism can lend to that growth, Seidel said. As large employers, for instance, recruit to the area, that may include families of children with a developmental disability, he said.

"In the consideration process for accepting a job here, a big factor is what kind of community am I moving to," Seidel said. "What services and programs are available?"...
Here is a link to photos on the nonprofit's 'Wings for Autism' event, held at Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE), from a couple of years ago: https://www.flickr.com/photos/thearc...7650414468394/


Last edited by Visionary7903; July 1st, 2017 at 12:50 PM.
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Old February 18th, 2017, 10:26 AM   #664
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

The subject of recent posts has mainly been on Autism-related events and organisations in eastern Pennsylvania.

Dragonfly Forest is a Conshohocken, Pennsylvania-based nonprofit that provides overnight camping experiences for children with various challenges, including Autism Spectrum Disorders. The nonprofit provides a full Autism Summer Program for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders...
Quote:
Last summer, 8-year-old Scott Jones was nervous about going to sleep away camp for the first time--especially about being away from his mom. But after a week filled with swimming, boating, hiking, ...games, and arts and crafts at Dragonfly Forest camp in West Chester, Pennsylvania, Scott had such a great time that he wanted to go back the next week--and the one after that.

This type of experience is just what the camp aims to give: one where kids with disabilities, including those with autism, like Scott, can enjoy an unforgettable week. "Generally speaking, when you ask people about their most favorite memories, they're not in therapy, or school, or in the classroom," says Sylvia van Meerten, the camp's program director. "Their favorite memories are when they were intentionally pulled away from life to have fun. We're here to do just that--give them a week based on fun."

Founded in 2001, Dragonfly Forest offers free summer sessions ...and in TK year expanded to provide a session for children on the autism spectrum as well...

Now, the yearly session attracts nearly 200 campers, on all ranges of the spectrum, from Pennsylvania and neighboring states. (And the program is quickly expanding to include after-school sessions...)

The staff takes pride when visitors say it looks like a 'regular camp,'...

The camp includes facilities you would find at many traditional camps: dorm-style housing, a 14-acre lake, a rope elements course, a zip line, tennis courts, hiking trails, a gym, and an arts and theater center.
But the staff does take measures to make sure Dragonfly Forest is well suited to kids on the spectrum. The key: to relieve their anxiety in social situations, says van Meerten. Kids with autism have a hard time picking up social cues and predicting what will happen next, which can make them anxious and nervous, she explains. "A typical person would feel anxious in a different culture where things don't make sense," van Meerten explains. "Kids with autism feel like that all the time in everyday life."
To alleviate this stress, the staff provides information booklets before camp starts, sticks to schedules, and offers detailed explanations before every activity and meals so campers know what to expect. (Van Meerten even gave out her personal email to answer last-minute questions before the start of the session.)
Counselors, who are trained each summer for four to seven days, are assigned to an individual camper for the session, with a counselor/camper ratio of 2:1...

And it's not just the kids' stress that Dragonfly hopes to relieve--the program is free in an effort to ease the financial burden for families.

...And possibly the biggest plus of all: Once camp is over, the kids head home with a newfound sense of confidence and independence...

Case in point: Scott wouldn't try the zip line at a friend's house before Dragonfly. After conquering the zip line over the summer, the family added a mini-zip line to the backyard. "[Scott] is the kind of kid that hangs back and assesses the situation," his mother Rebecca says. "His hang-back time is a little bit shorter now."
Here is a link to a video from Dragonfly Forest from last year:


Last edited by Visionary7903; August 23rd, 2017 at 10:48 AM.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 07:33 PM   #665
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Default Re: 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

After a 6 year thread length and no other member replying, what has this to do with pheromones?
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Old May 14th, 2017, 07:44 PM   #666
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Default Re: 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

Hi Wotan. In the lounge section, off-topic threads are tolerated. This thread has an important number of views, I guess it's interesting for many people.
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Old May 14th, 2017, 08:18 PM   #667
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Default Re: 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

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Originally Posted by Conjurator View Post
Hi Wotan. In the lounge section, off-topic threads are tolerated. This thread has an important number of views, I guess it's interesting for many people.
Ah. Okay. I read through a few pages expecting something about using pheromones as a treatment for autism.
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Old September 19th, 2017, 12:46 PM   #668
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Default 'Agricultural specialisterne': rural employment revolution for those with Autism

The subject of recent posts has mainly been on Autism-related events and organisations in Pennsylvania.

In neighbouring New Jersey, the parents of one boy on the Autism Spectrum formed a competitive swim team, recruiting diverse teens on the spectrum and training them. 'Swim Team' is a film that chronicles the extraordinary rise of the Jersey Hammerheads, capturing a moving quest for inclusion, independence and a life that feels winning...

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Mike McQuay is always pushing his swimmers beyond their perceived limits.

But there will come a time when he won't be there. And he asks, what will happen when the swimming pool lights are turned out. What will happen when his son and other swimmers on the team he coaches are faced with the challenges of being self-sufficient in the real world?

McQuay, of Perth Amboy, is featured in a new documentary, "Swim Team," which follows a group of Middlesex County teenagers on the autism spectrum as they journey through competitive swimming and the many life challenges as they approach adulthood. The film is directed and produced by Lara Stolman, of Short Hills, who has produced news and documentaries for outlets like NBC, AMC, and The New York Times' website.

McQuay coaches the Jersey Hammerheads, which practice at the Raritan Bay Area YMCA, in Perth Amboy. His son, Mikey McQuay Jr., who is on the autism spectrum, is one of the team's strongest swimmers and one of the central figures portrayed in the film.

Mike McQuay formed the team with his wife, Maria so that their son and the other teenage boys could have an opportunity to form bonds with their peers, and to learn to take direction and gain the social skills needed for adulthood.

"Once swimming stops, these kids still matter," Mike McQuay said.

The film documents the team from the first day of practice of the season in January 2014 all the way to the U.S. Special Olympic Games held that summer at the College of New Jersey in Ewing.

The McQuays say they started the swim team because such opportunities, as seen in the film, are often missing in the lives of those on the autism spectrum.

"They are athletes. If they can succeed in competition, they can succeed in life," said Mike McQuay.

Mike McQuay doesn't take it easy on the swimmers. He treats them like any coach would, and the hard work and constant practice has earned the team numerous tournament gold medals, including several from the Special Olympic Games.

In a recent telephone interview with NJ Advance Media, Stolman said she wanted to create a film that went beyond educating about autism. She wanted audiences to journey with the teens as they battle to overcome the odds.

...But, more than anything, she said, "I want people to fall in love with them" and really get to know the people and their stories.

"People with developmental disabilities have skills, and they have things to contribute to the community," she added.

In the documentary, Mike McQuay said doctors said his son would likely never speak or be self-sufficient. Mike McQuay said swimming with the team has shown that the boys can take direction, gain confidence, and make friends. Mikey was at a meet in Toms River during the interview.

The film is making the rounds at numerous festivals, recently winning Best Feature Documentary at the Picture This Film Festival in Calgary, Canada. It will be featured at the Monmouth County Film Festival on Saturday at the Two River Theater in Red Bank.

Throughout the film, the McQuays are seen constantly battling every step of the way to get the services needed for Mikey. There are moments of despair and fear.

"Everything is a cost," Maria McQuay says during the film. "It is a big cost, but we do what we can. We borrow money -- if we have to sell the house, we'll sell the house."

The film shows Mikey, and his teammates, like county residents Kelvin Troung and Robbie Justino, trying to get a footing on their coming futures. Mikey's ultimate dream was to work at a zoo, a goal he comes to achieve.

"That is the goal, you want your child to be independent because you know you're not going to be around forever," Stolman said...
Here is a link to a trailer of the film:

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