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Posted 12.08.20 in NewsBack

The holiday season has arrived, and Hands theFamilyHelpNetwork wants to help families celebrate and enjoy the holidays.  For families with children and youth on the Autism spectrum, the holiday season can be a wonderful time and one which can present some specific challenges.  With the COVID-19 pandemic potentially altering many family traditions this year, it could prove more challenging for an individual with Autism.

To assist, Hands theFamilyHelpNetwork is providing some holiday-based tips focussed on children with Autism for any families who might benefit.  They are also asking families to share their own traditions and tips for a happy holiday season on the Hands Autism Services Facebook page.

“This time of year, with all the lights and decorations, and schedule changes can be very difficult for a person with Autism,” said Karen Grattan-Miscio, Interim Director of Autism and Behavioural Services, at Hands. “One tip we recommend for families is that before decorating for the holidays, explain what will be happening and the changes that will be occurring in their home. It’s helpful to start adding decorations slowly so that changes are not occurring all at once.  Involve the person with Autism as much as possible. If using scents or musical items when decorating, try testing them first to see if they are tolerable to the person with Autism before including them in the home.”


Other Autism-related holiday tips for families include:

Hands wishes everyone a peaceful and enjoyable holiday season and looks forward to healthy and happy New Year.