April 15, 2016       Connecting you with the Minnesota autism community.

A Note from Jonah Weinberg, Executive Director
We're midway through Autism Awareness Month, and the AuSM team is working hard to finalize details for the 21st Annual Minnesota Autism Conference and our 2nd annual AuSM Inspirations Gala. We'll be wrapping up this month of activities and awareness by bringing the community together, and we hope you'll join us for both events. 
For more than two decades, families, individuals with autism, and professionals have gathered at our annual conference to share resources, learn from experts, and build community. The conference offers a range of informational sessions and learning opportunities to meet your needs and deepen your understanding of autism.
If this will be your first time at the conference, or if you want help planning your sessions, be sure to take a look at our guide for parents and caregivers. There will also be great opportunities to meet with service providers and therapists who offer unique supports for you and family. 
But the fun doesn't end with April. The warmer months are just around the corner, and we're looking forward to the vast array of summer social skills classes and camps for youth and adults with autism. We consistently receive feedback from our campers that these weeks are the highlight of the summer, which is why we've expanded our social skills classes to Duluth and opened Camp Hand in Hand to adults on the spectrum. Registration is filling quickly; make sure you're thinking ahead to ensure a summer of friends, fun, and learning! 

We're also still hiring counselors for our camps, so please spread the word to anyone who may be interested in spending a week or more with a group of awesome kids or adults with autism. 
April is a great time to become an AuSM member or to renew your membership. In addition to discounts on classes and programs, your membership helps expand the voice of the autism community, as we work with legislators and policy makers to increase access to resources and programs across Minnesota. 

And as the end of April approaches, you can always help commemorate Autism Awareness Month by making a gift to AuSM in honor of someone you love. We're very proud that every dollar we receive stays local, to serve Minnesota families and individuals touched by autism.

Have an AuSM day!

AuSM Executive Director
21st Annual Minnesota Autism Conference
Join AuSM April 27-30, 2016 at the DoubleTree Hilton Hotel Minneapolis - Park Place for keynote presentations, more than 30 expert-led breakout sessions, autism product and service exhibitors, the AuSM Bookstore, and opportunities for networking with your peers. Parents, caregivers, educators, service providers, mental health professionals, and individuals with autism are encouraged to join us for this event of the year for the Minnesota autism community. 

Register for the conference by April 18 to take advantage of the Early Bird Rate and save up to $50 per registration.

The deadline to reserve hotel rooms at the conference rate is April 19, 2016. 
For reservations, click here or call 800.245.9190.
CEUs available for mental health professionals
Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are available from the Minnesota Board of Psychology, the Minnesota Board of Social Work, and the Minnesota Board of Marriage and Family Therapy for the Thursday, April 28 mental health-focused track during the 21st Annual Minnesota Autism Conference. Certificates will be distributed upon completion. Click here for more information and to register.
AuSM Inspirations Gala
Order your tickets today for Celebrate AuSM Inspirations, AuSM's second annual gala celebration that will take place on during the state autism conference on April 29, 2016 from 6-10 p.m. at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Minneapolis - Park Place. Join AuSM for a night of food, entertainment, and inspiration as we celebrate the people who make our community great and raise money to support AuSM's programs and services. K102's Mike "Muss" Mussman will return as the evening's emcee.

AuSM is seeking donations of gift cards and silent auction items for the gala. Contact Lisa Sieben at lsieben@ausm.org for more information.
Life with Autism: Intro to Autism
Develop an understanding of the basics of autism, resource options, and positive behavior supports. Learn how families, schools, and the medical community can work together to educate and support those with autism. Get practical tips on helping individuals with autism meet their potential.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016 from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
AuSM Office in St. Paul 
Cost: $25 AuSM Members; $40 Non-Members

Duluth Social Skills Classes
Led by autism education specialists and special interest educators, AuSM Social Skills summer classes in Duluth help participants build skills in low-stress environments that encourage learning and growth.

Ages 8-11
August 1-5
Ages 12-18
August 22-25
AuSM Summer Camps
AuSM day and residential summer camps are filling quickly! Camps are tailored for youth and adults with autism. Parents and caregivers can rest assured knowing that their campers are being cared for by highly trained, experienced staff, while campers make memories that last a lifetime. AuSM camps are available for individuals ages 6 and up who are AuSM members. Click here for information about scholarships and waivers.

Staff-to-Camper Ratio: 1:4; Residential camp

All sessions are FULL. Registrations for the wait list are being accepted for those two sessions. Staff-to-Camper Ratio: 1:1 - attending to the individual needs of each camper; Residential camp

Staff-to-Camper Ratio: 1:2; Day camp
Make a difference this summer
Want to help with a summer activity that will be personally rewarding and support the Minnesota autism community? Consider working at an AuSM Camp for a week or more. Counselors are needed for Camps Wahode and Hand in Hand and Camp Discovery needs cabin support staff (cabin support staff must have previous experience working with youth with autism). 

Registered nurses also are needed for the Camp Hand in Hand weeks. For more information, contact Terri Borowick, AuSM Director of Camp Programs at camp@ausm.org, or click here.
Summer Social Skills
Register for the AuSM Social Skills classes that support your special interests. Click here for information about scholarships and waivers.

Como Zoo Skills
Elementary (ages 8-12): Wild Things; Teens (ages 13-18): Wild Side
July 11-15, 2016

Predator & Prey (ages 8-11); June 20-24, 2016
Crazy Creatures (ages 12-14); July 18-22, 2016
Zoo Crew and Design (ages 15-18); August 8-12, 2016

Session 1: Females only, June 22, 29 and July 6, 13, 20 and 27, 2016
Session 2: Co-ed, June 23, 30 and July 7, 14, 21 and 28, 2016

June 20-24, 2016

FREE! For youth with autism and their siblings and parents/caregivers.
August 22-26, 2016 

July 25-29, 2016

Lowry Nature Center: July 19-22, 2016
Eastman Nature Center: August 16-19, 2016

June 28-July 15, 2016

Sessions 1 and 2: June 20-24, 2016
Sessions 3 and 4: August 1-5, 2016
AuSM Skillshops
Mindful Parenting: How To Stop the Fighting, Yelling, and Frustration

April 21, 2016
Location: St. David's Center
Presenter: Samantha Moe, MA SLP

Are you stressed out and exhausted? Discover why children with autism push your limits and try to control everything, and how you can transform your home into an enjoyable space rather than a war zone. In this interactive presentation you will receive solutions from the Mad to Glad Blueprint™ that are key to having a calmer, more cooperative child and restoring your sanity. Click here to register.

Toilet Training Challenge
May 19, 2016
Location: St. David's Center
Presenter: Anne Dudley, MEd

Toilet training individuals with ASD can be a daunting challenge, but it is a critical life skill. Understand the unique autism learning style, select motivating reinforcers and obtain a step-by-step method to address toileting issues across the range of the spectrum. Bring your specific toileting challenges and we will problem solve together, no matter the age of the individual. Click here to register.

June 2: Using Personal Learning Plans for Students with ASD
June 7: Tips on Helping your Child with ASD Learn to Ride a Bike (limited space available)
August 30: Food Fight! Nutritional Strategies for Children with ASD and Their Families
September 20: Autism and Anxiety in Adults
Tuesdays at the Capitol
As a member of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (MN-CCD), AuSM invites you to Tuesdays at the Capitol through the end of the legislative session (May 10). From 10-11 a.m., the MN-CCD will be at the Minnesota Department of Transportation Cafeteria to help people share their stories about important disability services with legislators and to ensure there is a disability community presence at the Capitol. Click here for more information.
AuSM Membership Drive
Become an AuSM Member by April 17 and your name will be entered into a drawing for two tickets to AuSM's gala, Celebrate AuSM Inspirations 2016, on April 29. The gala will bring our community together for food, drinks, games, a silent auction, and a celebration of those serving as true inspirations to individuals affected by autism. A $150 value! 

Therapy and Support
With more than 80 years of combined experience with individuals with autism, AuSM's team of highly trained and licensed therapists wants you to feel comfortable and knowledgeable as we undertake this journey together, striving for positive, individual-focused goals.
AuSM's Counseling and Consulting Services include: diagnostic assessments for adults, functional or behavioral assessments for all ages, individual therapy, family therapy, behavior consultation, marriage and couples therapy, and training and consulting for organizations and service providers.

AuSM sends out a monthly "Ask the Therapist" e-mail where AuSM's therapists answer questions submitted by the Minnesota autism community. Click here to read the "Ask the Therapist" archive. To submit a question, e-mail info@ausm.org.

Information and Resources
Autism Community Events and Fundraisers
Autism Society of Minnesota | 651.647.1083 | info@ausm.org |  www.ausm.org

Established in 1971, the Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to education, advocacy and support designed to enhance the lives of those affected by autism from birth through retirement. AuSM does not sell or share the contact information of our members, volunteers, donors or supporters.

Autism Society of Minnesota, 2380 Wycliff St. #102, St. Paul, MN 55114