Last updated: 4-21-14

(Kyle and his pet Chizzles)

Welcome Friends!

April is Autism Awareness Month.  
Scratch that, April is AUTISM ACTION MONTH!!!l  
With the release of the CDC's new numbers, (1:68) indicationg a higher prevalence of children developing Autism,
we need to fight harder than ever to secure resources for our children, teens, and adults living with Autism.  
(Personal commentary FROM PARENTS of older teens continually being added....see The Future page)

I will host a resource table locally, at the Annual Whitemarsh Township Day located at Miles Park, on Saturday April 26th.  There are many enjoyable events for the entire family, so stay on the look out as I add many of them here. Don't forget to check the autismguards facebook page, so you don't miss a thing.

I believe that it is vital to build relationships with community establishments, especially one that embraces my special needs child, his friends, and all children. Community connections are extremely important for a variety of reasons, especially when they create real life opportunities for our growing adult population of special needs individuals.  My personal interest with my networking group: www.Autismguards.org is to create real time activities, job cruising opportunities, employment, higher education, and independent living opportunities. 

My son, Kyle, and his entire class have built a positive relationship by volunteering at our local library thanks to a dedicated paraprofessional/classroom aide that happens to be a big part of the library. Through this individual, Kyle's life skills teacher was able to make direct contact with library staff and begin a volunteer program, where the teens from PW life skills class go over and label books, re-shelve books, and do many other important tasks.

So what is your latest endevour with/for your child, teen, adult?  Ours is enrolling Kyle in a local YMCA that offers specialized classes for Kyle and teens like him.  Kyle will also be joining music therapy at Music Works.

Do you have a teenager with Autism?  I do!  Actually, as I meet up with more and more parents of children with any special need, I am realizing that we aren't much different from one another.  We all want our children to thrive and live out happy lives.  I started this site to keep track of resources for developmentally delayed/neurologically impaired pre-teens and teens, because I am concerned about transitioning, especially from highschool to "the real world".

(Kyle and his little sister, Rachel)

This is a parent and guardian resource/networking group, facilitating educational information and recreational resources for adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Autism Guards is a localized web-site for neighbors of Montgomery County (Conshohocken, Lafayette Hill, Norristown, East Noriton, North Whales, Blue Bell, Plymouth Meeting, Chestnut Hill, Flourtown, Springfield, etc...) and beyond.  We are currently using social media to continue dialogue and spread valuable information and resources. 

We do not have monthly meetings at this time, however, we do provide information on local area meetings that may be of interest to those in the Autism community.  

You are encouraged to check out easily updated information via our Facebook page: Autismguards.  

(Pictured above Kyle and his Mom, Tara)

All the Best,                                  
Tara Thompson-Horwitz

P.S.  Don't know where to start?  * Autismspeaks.org

This site is listed there, along with many other great resources to help us all!  
There are several valuable guidelines and outlines for the best ways to get started on advocating for your child or loved one.  The tool kit that I have found most helpful for my own son is the Transition Tool Kit!   They have an Employment Tool Kit and many others.  
They hold the market on research and many other things...   

Keep a binder and good luck on your journey!