Adam's Journey

Homeopathic Healing of Autism

Programs and Services and Waiting Lists – Oh My!

on March 13, 2011

I realize that some of you may be wondering about the “services” that are now available to Adam as a result of his autism diagnosis.  In the last few weeks I’ve been sorting through all the available programs and DREADING the supposed “year-long PLUS” waiting lists.  Anyhow, here’s a brief update on where we currently stand.

The first service that opened its door was speech therapy.  The first referral was made when Adam was about 20 months old.  It took about 6 months of waiting to get a speech assessment which indicated a NEED for speech therapy so then we were placed on the waiting list for this therapy.  Now, almost a year later, Adam started his first 8 week block of speech of one-on-one therapy at the beginning of March.  *Phew*  Done.  Check!    

When Adam was 20 months old he was also referred to a community Infant Development Program which sends workers to your home for developmental therapy.  After waiting a year, I called to make sure Adam was still on the list and I was assured that indeed he was but that the programming is allocated based on need.  At that point Adam had not yet been diagnosed with any developmental disorder so he was not labelled “high priority.”  *Sigh*  However FINALLY, after about a year and a half of waiting Adam’s turn is up and we met with Melanie (our resource worker) this week.  Done.  Check!

Then, there’s the Community Living daycare program.  About a week after Adam was diagnosed with autism, I brought him to a government run play centre one Saturday morning while Jon took Emersyn to a winter carnival.  We decided to separate the two for the day so that Adam wouldn’t spoil Emersyn’s fun in case he decided to have a tantrum (poor Emersyn is contantly making concessions for her little brother and though she never complains, she deserves to have a little unspoiled fun every once in a while).  It turned out to be a blessing in disguise.  While we were there, I started talking to one of the workers and she told me about the Community Living daycare program and wrote down the name and number of lead hand on a scrap piece of paper.  I called the following week and had the most wonderful chat with Kathy who was very knowledgeable about the available programs and funding for kids on the spectrum.  It was the first conversation I had where I didn’t feel overwhelmed or inundated by information.  Anyhow, she told me that were several available spots coming up in September and if I referred Adam soon he would most definitely have a year to participate in the program before he started school in September 2012.  So I took care of THAT paperwork too.  Done.  Check!  Amazingly enough, a spot has opened up immediately and Adam will be starting the program after the March Break.  Twice a week, he’ll spend the morning at a local daycare with a dedicated ECE worker who helps him integrate with the other kids his age.  How awesome is that?!?!  Originally I was worried that Adam would be rejected since the daycare requires up-to-date vaccination records but Kathy advocated on our behalf and they’re allowing the exemption.  Phew!  Also, Kathy will be the ECE worker assisting Adam at the daycare.  Can’t get any better than that!

So it all appears to be coming together.  It all culminated so quickly that I almost forget he’s been on some waiting lists for longer than a year!  I said almost people.  Speaking of waiting lists, Adam is still on waiting list for occupational therapy (which can supposedly help him with sensory issues and any gross/fine motor difficulties he might have).  Adam is also waiting to be put on the waiting list for Intensive Behavioural Intervention (IBI) offered through Timmins’ Child and Family Services.  This is the program that everyone seems to tout as the most important yet they won’t put him on the waiting list until they see the official report of Adam’s diagnosis.  When I called the pediatrician’s office to see if they could just fax over a copy I was told that I needed to make an appointment to come in and “discuss available options” for Adam.  *Sigh*  That appointment is scheduled at the end of March. 

And so, it is coming together yet there is still more waiting to go.  I think this is a good start though as I wouldn’t want Adam to overwhelmed by too many weekly appointments.  The Lord is good and he is clearly holding our hands and walking us through this process.  We are blessed.


One response to “Programs and Services and Waiting Lists – Oh My!

  1. Taina Walsh says:

    Thankyou for the update Hanna. Things are most certainly progressing now with services that will help Adam. Now you can feel that things are finally moving ahead in that area of his life :).
    P.S. I know what you are talking about when you talked about what Emersyn goes through. It was hard on Katrina too… many times.
    Love, Taina

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