I THINK I/MY CHILD MAY BE ON THE AUTISM SPECTRUM. WHERE CAN I GET AN ASSESSMENT?
Below are some options for getting an assessment for autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Eligibility and cost varies with each option.
- Developmental pediatrician (ask your family doctor for a referral)
- The Special Needs Access Point (up to age 6)
- Private psychologist
- Check with your child’s school to inquire about the availability of a psycho-educational assessment
- Colleges and University students can be reimbursed for an assessment if they are on Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)
WHO CAN HELP ME TO ADVOCATE FOR MYSELF/MY CHILD WITHIN THE SCHOOL SYSTEM?
The following agencies/organizations can assist you in navigating the education system and advocating for yourself or your child:
- Elementary and High School – start with the teacher and/or principal
- Waterloo Region Family Network (WRFN)
- Developmental Services Resource Centre (DSRC)
- People for Education website and Parent Support Line: 1-888-534-0100
- College and University – Speak to the disability supports office and/or the counselling office at your school
WHO CAN HELP ME/MY CHILD WITH MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS (I.E. ANXIETY, STRESS/COPING)?
Here are some services in our community that can assist with mental health concerns:
- Family Physician
- Front Door Mental Health Services
- Here 24/7
- Grand River Hospital
- Private therapist (psychologist, social worker, etc.)
- The Counselling Collaborative Program
- College/University students can access counselling through their post-secondary institution
- Online resources (i.e. visual supports, blogs, etc.)
ARE THERE ANY SUPPORTS FOR PEOPLE WHO DON’T HAVE A DIAGNOSIS OF ASD YET?
Below are some resources that you may find useful prior to receiving a formal diagnosis of ASD:
See answers to question #3 for mental health supports
- Waterloo Region Family Network for family/peer support
- Private therapies (social skills, occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, etc.)
- Kitchener Public Library Autism Collection
- Select events listed in the monthly Autism Bulletin
- Autism Spectrum Connection website
- Ontario Early Years Centres (ages 0-6)
- Autism Services Waterloo Region
WHAT ARE SOME SOURCES OF FUNDING THAT I OR MY FAMILY MAY BE ELIGIBLE FOR?
Have a look at the list below, and visit the websites to see if you are eligible.
- If you have insurance benefits, check with your provider to see what services/therapies may be covered.
- Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities (ACSD)
- Disability Tax Credit Certificate
- Special Services at Home (under age 18)
- Passport (over 18)
- Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)
- President’s Choice Children’s Charity
- Easter Seals Incontinence Supplies Grant Program
- Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP)
Funding for Leisure/Recreation
- Children’s Fitness & Art Tax Credits
- KidSport Waterloo
- Canadian Tire JumpStart
- PAL Card
- Leisure Buddy (Cambridge)
Funding for Students
*Please note that the Q&A is for general information only and may not pertain to your specific situation. For more detailed and personalized information, please contact the Family Resource Coach directly.