Monthly Archives: January 2019

New Video Series – Women & Girls with Autism
20,000 Pounds of Herring Sold
Special Needs Community Events
Autism in the News

Women and Girls with Autism video series

ACT’s 2018 Focus on Research Conference provided two days of fascinating insights into the complexities of identifying and treating women and girls with autism. Researchers are increasingly recognizing that autism affects women and girls differently than males. Delays in diagnosis are common, reducing access to services, with implications for long-term mental health and employment prospects.

CIRCAThanks to funding from the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research and Collaboration (CIRCA) at the University of British Columbia, ACT is able to provide an edited version of the entire conference, which will be made available over the coming weeks.


Improving the Recognition of Women and Girls on the Autism Spectrum

Improving the Recognition of Women and Girls on the Autism SpectrumThe first presentation in the series is by Dr. William Mandy, Senior Lecturer in Clinical Psychology at University College London. He shares his research into the characteristics of autism in females, the implications for diagnosis, and ways of improving recognition, with a focus on practical ways of improving clinical and educational practice.

Drawing on his extensive clinical experience, Dr. Mandy offers a compassionate perspective on the barriers faced by women and girls when they are not offered the self-awareness and family understanding that can accompanies a diagnosis. Also covered are myths about autism; new research into gender ratios and the impact of “camouflaging” on diagnosis of women and girls.

Watch now


Upcoming Videos – February

ACT will be releasing the entire 2018 Focus on Research Conference on Women and Girls with Autism over the next several weeks. Stay updated on their release through these emails or visit Autism Videos at ACT.

Understanding the Needs of Girls and Women on the Autism Spectrum
Dr. William Mandy, University College London, UK

The Experience of Women with ASD – A Panel Presentation by Women with ASD
Introduced and moderated by Rene Jamison, University of Kansas, USA

Special Challenges Faced by Mothers with ASD
Introduced and moderated by Dr. Grace Iarocci, Simon Fraser University

Girls Night Out: Lessons learned from a unique intervention for girls with ASD
Presented by Dr. Rene Jamison and Dr. Jessica Oeth Schuttler
University of Kansas

Sex Matters: The secondary impact of low prevalence for girls and women with autism
Presented by Dr. Rene Jamison and Dr. Jessica Oeth Schuttler
University of Kansas

Setting Priorities for Future Research
Panel presentation introduced and moderated by Dr. Anthony Bailey, University of British Columbia

Visit the Women and Girls with Autism video release page


BC Community Events

ACT lists workshops and conferences held in B.C. related to autism and other special needs held by community organizations and agencies. Have an event you’d like to submit for your organization? Submit here.

Upcoming BC Community Events

Featured Events
Culturally Responsive Group-Based Positive Behaviour Support Workshop for Chinese Families of Children with ASD
Saturday, February 16 – Sunday, February 17 – UBC, Vancouver
A special opportunity for Mandarin-speaking families at a UBC-sponsored workshop.

Behaviour Interventionist Training Workshop
Saturday & Sunday, January 19 – 20 – Vancouver and Victoria

Real Talk Tough Cookies Event
Thursday, January 24 – Burnaby


Over $20,000 raised at the
ACT Herring Sale

The weather was brilliant, the fish fresh and the volunteers friendly on January 12th at the 2nd Annual Herring Sale for Autism, held in Steveston. A steady stream of customers were entertained by the antics of a giant fish mascot and some very boisterous (real) sea lions!

Many thanks to the generosity of the owners of Oceanside Fisheries, Anne McCaw and Mike Rekis, who donated over 20,000 pounds of herring – raising $20,000 to support ACT’s work. Particular thanks to all the volunteers who so graciously transported 20 lb bags of icy herring to the waiting cars of our customers!


Autism in the News

Get the latest on ACT’s Facebook page

8 best books about autism – Independent

Twenty-One Years After Her Autism Diagnosis, Haley Moss Is Admitted to the Florida Bar – Daily Business Review

Autism, giftedness and using ‘specialness’ as a force for good – The Record

Victoria school district tracking how often special needs students are asked to miss class – CBC News

Depressed and Then Diagnosed With Autism, Greta Thunberg Explains Why Hope Cannot Save Planet But Bold Climate Action Still Can – Common Dreams

You can’t say inclusive education doesn’t work. We haven’t even begun to try – Globe and Mail

Autism didn’t stop Michael from writing a book, even though he can’t read or write – The Standard

A viral video of a teacher abusing an autistic boy highlights how society misunderstands autism – Salon

Teen with autism overcomes job hurdles by cornering market in cleaning smelly bins – ABC News

Advocates for students with disabilities call on Ontario to stop school exclusions – Globe and Mail

Educating Grayson: Are inclusive classrooms failing students? – Globe and Mail

Feeling fidgety in class? Go stomp, jump or hop down this school’s sensory hallway – CBC News

ACT’s 2nd Annual Herring Sale is this Saturday!

To kick off fundraising in 2019, ACT – Autism Community Training will benefit from a ‘Herring for Autism Sale’, sponsored by Oceanside Fisheries, on Saturday, January 12 in Steveston, Richmond, the heart of the Lower Mainland’s fishing industry. Herring is a delicacy in many cuisines and used as baitfish in sportfishing.

Visit the Herring Sale event page for herring recipes, event details, information on how to volunteer, and online pre-orders.

Visit the Richmond Sentinel for coverage of the Herring Sale.

Check out the Herring Sale facebook event page to get the latest updates!

Thanking our donors, volunteers and supporters – Over $90,000 raised!

ACT’s end of year fundraising campaign was a success, thanks to donations from dozens of parents, grandparents, siblings, as well as teachers, SLP’s, OT’s, Behavior Analysts and companies, from across Canada. We thank all our donors and sponsors for their generous support in 2018.

We set ourselves the goal of raising $100,000 by December 25, and we achieved 90% of our goal – thanks to $45,000 in matching funds from the Dwyer-Ross family which was an incredible boost to this campaign. Donations continued to come in – they are welcomed year round! We are also encouraged by many positive messages including this one: “Thank you for all that you have done and everything that you do! The existence of ACT has made a great impact in the well-being of our family living with autism.”

Mary Ellen Ross and Blair Dwyer presenting their donation to
Deborah Pugh, ACT’s Executive Director

Special thanks to the Sisters of Saint Ann, who donated $10,000 to Autism Videos @ ACT.

Thanks to the support of the autism community, ACT will be able to maintain our extensive online information and training resources in 2019. We are still searching for funding to allow us to continue with a full live web streamed conference schedule as the provincial government is no longer funding ACT.

All donors to ACT can be assured that when you donate your money or time to ACT, we will use the funding frugally to promote practical, evidence-based resources that support individuals with autism and their families. We will continue to keep our overheads to a minimum and focus on sustaining and developing our resources which we have been providing freely for more than a decade.

Best wishes for 2019 from ACT’s Board of Directors and Staff.
Deborah Pugh
Executive Director