Childhood & Autism
If you’ve met one child with autism, you’ve met one child with autism. And, with 1 in 88 children being diagnosed each year, our quest to find what works for our one child seems as daunting as the autism-related Google results page. Often, the formula for more “good days” is found in a combination of therapy, social skills training, education on safety, and the commitment of a caring community. The good news is, you’ve come to the place to help you to rally all of these resources – and in the process, we will rally around you. We are here to help. You are AuSM and you are not alone.
Trying to figure out which service and support options fit the needs of your child or for you is not an easy task. Autism is a complex condition and navigating hundreds of systems for resources can be daunting. AuSM's Information and Referral team is available to listen, help and sort through options. Our Information and Referral team can help connect you to the many effective programs, therapists, services and support agencies.
The AuSM Discovery Series is designed for parents, family members, relatives, and caregivers of individuals who are newly diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Topics are tailored to meet specific needs on the spectrum, and participants come away with practical strategies and suggestions to help guide their journey through the age-specific stages of life.
AuSM Skillshops are designed for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and their parents, family members and caregivers. Skillshops also are a valuable resource for educators who work with individuals affected by ASD. Intended for small groups, AuSM Skillshops allow you the opportunity to participate by discussing and solving problems on topics that concern you the most. Click here for more information.
The AuSM Mental Health Services team works in partnership with you to develop a plan based on your needs. For many, working with mental heath service providers is a new experience; we want you to feel comfortable and knowledgeable as we undertake this journey as a team striving for positive, individual-focused goals. Our services include diagnostic, functional and behavioral assessments; individual, couple and family therapy, developmental therapy, behavior consultation, training for organizations and service providers and more. AuSM also offers free support groups. Click here for more information.
AuSM Social Skills classes foster self-awareness and self-esteem while participants learn how to make friends, fit into a group, take part in conversations, ask appropriate questions, and engage one’s sense of humor. Building skills using the students’ special interests, including plants, animals and art, AuSM Social Skills classes offer a low-stress environment that encourages learning and growth.
Classes are divided by age and topics and activities are tailored to the age and developmental abilities of each group.
AuSM summer camps are planned by experienced staff who understand the need for structure, visual schedules, environmental supports, social stories and individualized communication systems. Parents/caregivers are required to provide extensive information about each camper before camp so that communication, sensory and behavioral needs can be met. You must be a member of AuSM in order to register for AuSM camp. Click here for more information.
Be better informed and better equipped to ensure positive outcomes in emergency situations. Whether it's because of the unique attributes of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) or vulnerability, the risk of an individual with ASD having an emergency encounter or becoming a victim of a crime is higher than for those without ASD. AuSM has created The Emergency Preparedness Essentials program for families, an autism emergency app, and a children’s story to better prepare for and respond to emergencies that involve individuals with ASD.
The AuSM Bookstore travels to many events throughout Minnesota including AuSM Workshops, the annual education symposium, AuSM's annual autism conference, Steps of Hope, and more. Please visit the Lending Library section of this site to learn more about what AuSM has to offer.
An AuSM Membership benefit, AuSM Lending Library materials are available for loan to all current AuSM members. You may check out up to 6 items for 3 weeks at a time. By checking out library materials, you assume responsiblity for them; you may be asked to replace lost or damaged items. Visit the AuSM office to search and borrow from AuSM's extensive Lending Library or complete an online request form to have a Lending Library item sent to you.
Thanks to recommendations from members of the Autism Society of Minnesota, we have compiled listings of professional services and providers in Minnesota and Western Wisconsin who work with individuals and families affected by autism. Click here to view the AuSM Resource Directory online.
AuSM offers many opportunities for individuals and families to get involved including volunteering, advocacy, presenting, fundraising and more. Your giving of time, talents and treasure not only forwards AuSM’s mission, but it also connects you to this great community. View the "Get Involved" section of AuSM's website on the far right side of this page and click on the offerings to learn more.
Your AuSM membership gives you access to those resources you need to be educated about the latest information and prepared for what life has in store. Your membership also helps you be involved with the autism community, helping you determine the best, most comfortable way for you to participate and grow.