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Hands celebrating with Light It Up Blue – Autism Services now online

North Bay, ON, April 1, 2020 – Hands theFamilyHelpNetwork is Lighting it Up Blue for World Autism Day this Thursday, April 2.

This year’s Light It Up Blue celebrations will be a little different, as the need to maintain physical distancing to stem the spread of COVID-19 means the usual festivities are put on hold.  That isn’t stopping Hands from celebrating, however. The agency will be bathing its physical buildings in blue light to show support for people with autism and those that love and care for them.  On social media, Hands is also sharing photos of staff and family celebrations while working online from home to support the families and clients they help.

Hands Autism Services were quick to move to a fully online delivery method when the COVID-19 pandemic was declared.  The switch was a smooth transition as the online format isn’t new for Hands Autism, recognized as a leading agency in successfully delivering online services for a number of years within the large, often rural regions of Northern Ontario.

“Autism Services at Hands hasn’t slowed down at all. We are here to help and we are ready to Light It Up Blue,” said Dr. Karen Grattan-Miscio, Senior Manager of Autism Services at Hands.  “We have significantly increased our virtual, online presence for families.  We’ve seen an increase in families accessing our online seminars and consultations, and we are providing direct therapy online. The team is updating our content to provide more options for families including new seminars, online clinics and groups, and new therapy options. It is vitally important our work continue for the families we help, and it’s also important for our staff and families that we all celebrate Light It Up Blue.”

April 2, 2020, marks the thirteenth annual World Autism Awareness Day.  Joined by the international community, hundreds of thousands of landmarks, buildings, homes and communities around the world come together on April 2, Autism Awareness Day, to Light It Up Blue in recognition of people with autism and those who love and support them.

You can check out Hands  Light It Up Blue celebration on their Facebook page: @handsautismservices.  Photos of the Hands offices bathed in blue will be shared at a later time.

Hands’ Autism Services are available to all children, youth and families with an Autism diagnosis. They offer a flexible, broad range of evidence-based services to support families and children. Autism Services Now Available include: Behaviour Assessment and Consultation, Clinical Service Coordination, Caregiver Coaching and Training, Evidence-Based Behaviour Intervention (including Group-Based and Individualized Service Options), Life Skills and Independence Building, Speech-Language Services, Social Skill Programs, Employment Supports, Transition to Adulthood Programs, and Camp-Based Programs. Hands also offers weekly free Virtual Autism Consultations every Tuesday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is now accepting new clients for behavioural services.

Register for services with Hands’ Family Service Workers at 1.800.668.8555 ext. 1333 or autism@handstfhn.ca.