Category Archives: Autism Videos at ACT

Combating Compassion Fatigue for Families and Caregivers of Children with Special Needs

Filmed October 2020

Caring for children is frequently exhausting. Parenting children with special needs is even more demanding of families, compounded by the need to navigate and advocate across systems. Driven by love, these families are at high-risk of neglecting themselves and developing compassion fatigue. In this 13-part workshop we begin by exploring the “costs of caring” and its potential physical and emotional toll. Then we consider research supported strategies that can empower families and build their resistance to ward off compassion fatigue. Systems supports, self-care, and mindful self-compassion are featured.

Georgina Robinson, PhD, Certified School Psychologist

Principal, Provincial Outreach Program for Autism and Related Disorders (POPARD)

Georgina has a doctoral degree in educational and counselling psychology from the University of British Columbia. She is the Principal of the Provincial Outreach Program for Autism and Related Disorders (POPARD) and is an adjunct faculty member at UBC. Georgina has over 20 years of clinical experience supporting both adults and children and is committed to supporting caregivers who are at risk for compassion fatigue.

Georgina has had training, supervision and experience and is considered a qualified teacher in several evidence-based mindfulness-based interventions including Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT; Oxford University Mindfulness Centre) and Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC, Center for Mindful Self-Compassion). Georgina’s work with families who have children with ASD is informed both by her professional qualifications as well as her lived experience as a parent of two boys, one with ASD.

Part 1: Introduction & Setting the Stage

Topics Covered: 
  • Caregiver stress and coping
  • Bronfenbrenner’s Ecological Systems Theory (stress is influenced across systems)
  • Identifying your sources of stress

Part 2: Identifying Stressors

Topics Covered: 
  • Stressors identified by caregivers of children with disabilities
  • Stigma and shame

Part 3: Compassion/Caregiver Satisfaction & Compassion Fatigue

Topics Covered: 
  • What is compassion and compassion fatigue?
  • Identifying where you are on the stages of compassion fatigue

Part 4: Symptoms of Compassion Fatigue & Protective Factors

Topics Covered: 
  • Caregiver reslience
  • Protective factors across systems
  • Benefits of family-centered care

Part 5: Parent to Parent Supports & Characteristics of Resilient Parents

Topics Covered: 
  • The benefits of parent to parent support
  • The Parent perspective from: The Institute of Families for child and Youth Mental Health (Family Smart)
  • Learning to Let it Go (video)

Part 6: Characteristics of Resilient Parents

Topics Covered: 
  • Social supports
  • Resilient ways of thinking and behaving
  • Awareness and Mindfulness
  • Identifying your protectors

Part 7: Components of Self-Care

Topics Covered: 
  • Why consider self-care
  • Caring for the body (physical)
  • Nurturing relationships (social/interpersonal)
  • Managing and appreciating your work

Part 8: Components of Self-Care (cont’d)

Topics Covered: 
  • Managing and appreciating your work (cont’d)
  • Making time for what’s important to you (personal)
  • Minding your mind (Psychological/Emotional)
  • Thnx4: Online, shareable gratitude journal

Part 9: Learning to Appreciate What You Already Have

Topics Covered: 

Part 10: An Introduction to Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC)

Topics Covered: 

Part 11: Practicing Mindfulness in Daily Life

Topics Covered: 
  • What is mindfulness?
  • Contrast with mindlessness
  • Sense and savour: The calming power of nature
  • Daily pleasant experiences tracker

Part 12: Making Time for Self-Compassion

Topics Covered: 

Part 13: Model of Emotion Regulation

Topics Covered: 
  • Paul Gilbert’s model of emotion regulation
    • Drive system, soothing system, and threat system
  • Responding to yourself with kindness
  • Affectionate breathing practice

 

Questions about the presentation or MSC?

 Visit Dr. Georgina Robinson’s site Mindful Self-Compassion for Life.

 

Where to Learn More About Mindful Self-Compassion

Selected Sources of Research on Mindfulness-Based Intervention (MBI)

Supporting Indigenous Families Affected by Autism through Engagement and Research

This one-day informal gathering was held to discuss how Indigenous communities can be better served by meaningful research into the needs of their children affected by developmental disabilities in British Columbia. The presentations featured research projects that have been developed in partnership with Indigenous communities. The benefits of collaborative partnerships, in the context of chronically under-resourced Indigenous programs, are discussed as a necessary step in the process of genuine reconciliation. Key research findings are presented.

Resources from this presentation are available to view at the end of this page. Skip to resources.

Introduction and Welcome

The day was opened by Shane Pointe, a respected Musqueam Elder who spoke about the concept of Nutsamaht – ‘we are one’.  

Researching Together: Creating Relationships and Safety with Indigenous Peoples

This session highlights a research relationship built on the need to generate and share knowledge about how Aboriginal Infant Development Programs (AIDP) support the health and well-being of Indigenous families and young children in BC. Research by “outsiders” in First Nations communities has long been a concern. Presenters Diana Elliott (AIDP Provincial Advisor) and Alison Gerlach (University of Victoria) explain how their partnership emerged through a shared understanding of the importance of relationship building and cultural safety in the research process, demonstrating the benefits of a ‘two-eye seeing’ approach.

Download the Research Summary report for the AIDP of BC (pdf)

Part 1:  Introduction to the collaborative process

Part 2: Two-eyed seeing: Indigenous knowledge and relationships with non-Indigenous researchers

Part 3: Autism and diagnosis in Indigenous communities

Part 4: Question & Answer period

  • Start – How do you adapt services to broaden partnerships with families? 
  • 07:33 – Can you speak to how we can make standardized testing and reports appropriate for Indigenous children?blank

Diana Elliott is Coast Salish from Cowichan Tribes and Nuu Chah Nulth from Hupacasath First Nation.  Diana values the teachings of her Elders and incorporates these into her daily work as the Provincial Advisor for the Aboriginal Infant Development Programs  which now has 52 sites across B.C. Working from the philosophy that each child is a gift from the Creator, Diana appreciates the importance of enriching early and lifelong learning for children and support for parents and families.

Alison GerlachDr. Alison Gerlach is an Assistant Professor in the School of Child & Youth Care at the University of Victoria. Alison’s research aims to explore and inform how the organization and provision of pediatric and early years programs and services can be equity-oriented; that is how disability/CYSN services for children can be inclusive of and responsive to families whose lived experiences including marginalization, racialization and discrimination. Her research draws on 25 years of providing occupational therapy with differently-abled children in diverse community and family contexts, and in partnership with Indigenous colleagues, organizations and First Nations in British Columbia. Alison is committed to community-based participatory research that engages with communities, organizations, families, and children as research partners.


Bridging the Cultural Gap Through Collaborative Dialogue

Nzen’man’ Child and Family Development Centre and Simon Fraser University (SFU) conducted a research project called ‘Bridging the Cultural Gap Through Collaborative Dialogue’.  The intent was explore the inequalities and barriers faced by Indigenous families in the Nlaka’pamux Nation when accessing diagnostic and support services for their child/youth with autism.  The Project Team heard from families and service providers about their experiences in supporting a child/youth with autism, what their hopes and dreams are for their children and how we can work together as a community to better support children and youth with autism.  As part of the project we organized training on early identification and intervention in ASD and sought input from Nzen’man’ service providers on the cultural sensitivity and potential adaptation of these tools.

Part 1: Nzen’man’ Child and Family Development Centre Society – Romona Baxter

  • Colonialism and transformation
  • “The ground we are standing on”: Approaches in early identification of ASD and family supports with an Nlaka’pamux lens.
  • The Trail Forward: rebuilding capacity

Part 2: Nzen’man’ Child and Family Development Centre Society – Rona Sterling-Collins

  • About the project: community consultations; autism-related staff training
  • Reciprocal Imitation Training (RIT)
  • Screening Tool for Autism in Toddlers (STAT)
  • Community consultations: knowledge gathering events in Lytton and Merritt
  • Hopes & Dreams: what do families want?
  • Barriers & inequalities faced by families
  • Supports needed by children & families
  • Community supports

Part 3: Simon Fraser University – Dr. Grace Iarocci

  • SFU’s experience of the research project
  • Research is not a new concept to Indigenous peoples
  • Lateral versus hierarchical partnership
  • Bring community partners and researchers together
  • Closing points and thanks with Rona Sterling-Collins

Part 4: Question & Answer period

  • Start – Can you share your experiences about what you learned from the communities you worked in?
  • 06:08 – How do you ask the questions about a community’s culture and how to work best within the community?

 

blankRomona Baxter is the Executive Director of the Nzen’man’ Child and Family Development Centre in Lytton, BC.  This Nlaka’pamux organization provides a wide range of early years services for children and their families, including those living with autism.  Romona is from the Nation and has served in this role for past 23 years to help create early learning spaces that honour Nlaka’pamux children as the heart of their communities.

blankDr. Grace Iarocci is Professor of Psychology and the Director of the Autism and Developmental Disorders Lab at Simon Fraser University. She is a practicing psychologist and works to disseminate and implement high quality evidence-based practices for individuals with autism in BC. She has partnered with the Nzen’man’ Child and Family Development Centre in Lytton, BC to conduct research to improve the early diagnosis and intervention for children at risk for ASD in the Nlha’kapmx Nation.

blankRona Sterling-Collins is from the Nlha’kapmx Nation. She has a Master’s Degree in Social Work and has owned and operated Rona Sterling Consulting for the past 23 years.  She is an ally and advocate for Indigenous people with special needs and has firsthand experience in raising a son with autism.  She believes in a wholistic approach to empowering Indigenous families and communities.


Building Respectful Relationships in Research with Indigenous People

View the slides for this presentation (PDF)

The Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP) strives to engage in First Nations, Métis and Inuit research, data collection, and reporting in a culturally-responsive and safe manner that acknowledges the history, language and culture of First Nations, Métis and Inuit children and their families.  HELP established an Aboriginal Steering Committee (ASC) in 2003.  This presentation will cover some of the history of this important relationship between the ASC and HELP faculty, staff and partners which has brought great value to HELP’s work.

As one of the ASC’s founding members, Diana Elliott will share how she learned about HELP in her own community, beginning in 1998. She will highlight her own interest in HELP and how research partnerships between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people and organizations are important, especially as we support and encourage Indigenous people to conduct research.  Diana’s presentation will explore how we support Indigenous people to see research as a useful and positive thing.

blankShannon Piedt is the Operations Director for the Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP), an organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of children through interdisciplinary research and mobilizing knowledge. HELP recognizes the importance of conducting research that is guided by First Nations, Métis and Inuit ways of knowing, establishing an Aboriginal Steering Committee in 2003.  HELP is based at the School of Population and Public Health at the University of British Columbia.

Part 1: Research in Aboriginal Communities: Are We Speaking the Language and Culture of Aboriginal People?

  • Story telling – passing on teachings and information
  • Cultural safety
  • AIDP ( Aboriginal Infant Development Program); HELP (Human Early Learning Partnership); Truth and Reconciliation Commission
  • Thought: “Unless a child learns about forces which shape him: the history of his people, their values and customs, their language, he will never really know himself or his potential as a human being.”
  • Cultural appropriateness
  • Aboriginal-led Research

Part 2: Human Early Learning Partnership (HELP) – Shannon Piedt

  • HELP: An interdisciplinary research institute at UBC
  • HELP’s vision & mission 
  • HELP’s child monitoring system
  • Aboriginal steering committee: Their role and influence
  • Building a culture at HELP
  • Influencing data collection
  • Aboriginal language and identity data
  • Guide for reporting and engagement
  • Aboriginal children’s data
  • Self-determination and OCAP (Ownership, Control, Access, and Possession)
  • Training for teachers and raising awareness about language and culture
  • Diana Elliot: Thoughts on the good, the bad, and the ugly of collaborative research

Part 3: Audience discussion and Q&A

  • Start – What research are you interested in?
  • 02:25 – Providing support for remote communities
  • 04:20 – What’s the difference between the STAT and the M-CHAT screening tools?
  • 07:10 – Improving access to support and services in rural & remote communities
  • 12:18 – Closing remarks

Resources

Gerlach, A. J. (2015). Early intervention with Indigenous families and children in British Columbia : a critical inquiry (T). University of British Columbia.

Gerlach, A. J. , Browne, A. J. , Sinha, V. , Elliott, D. (2017). Navigating Structural Violence with Indigenous Families: The Contested Terrain of Early Childhood Intervention and the Child Welfare System in Canada. The International Indigenous Policy Journal, 8(3)

Gerlach, Alison & Elliott, Diana. (2017). Prioritizing Relationships and Relational Practices with Families Experiencing Social Marginalization. Childcare Exchange.

Ages & Stages Questionnaires – Cultural Adaptations Guidelines for Aboriginal Communities

The STAT™ (Screening Tool for Autism in Toddlers & Young Children)

This is not a guide to Indigenous research partnerships – Karen Adams, Shannon Faulkhead

Autism Videos @ ACT – 60 educational videos for parents and professionals


Co-sponsored by

 
Aboriginal Infant Development Program

Aboriginal Infant Development Program

Aboriginal Supported Child Development

Aboriginal Supported Child Development

Simon Fraser University

Simon Fraser University

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Dwyer Tax Law

Practical Tips for Helping Families Reduce Stress

Parents of children with developmental disabilities experience higher levels of stress than parents of typically developing children. During the current pandemic, these feelings of stress have been further heightened for the many parents who are getting few breaks as they care for their children. In this webinar, a structured discussion between Dr. Fawcett and Dr. Anthony Bailey, Susan will provide some practical tips and strategies to help parents reduce their stress, including a discussion of the importance of self-care, cognitive reframing strategies, and a mindfulness practice.

This webinar is relevant to parents with children of all ages who have developmental disabilities of varying types (e.g., autism, Down syndrome).

Presenters

Susan Fawcett, PhD, RSLP Director of Therapy, Behaviour & Family Support at the Down Syndrome Resource Foundation

Anthony Bailey, M.D., Chair of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, University of British Columbia

Supplemental Resources:

Practical Tips for Helping Families Reduce Stress Handout


Video Sponsor

blank

The production of this video has been sponsored by the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research and Collaboration in Autism (CIRCA) at the University of British Columbia.


ACT is gathering information to support families during the COVID-19 crisis, including resources specific to those who are neuro-diverse and useful general resources. Our COVID-19 Resources page will be updated as new resources come in.

More videos from ACT’s COVID-19 educational learning live stream series

Many parents of children with diverse learning needs are feeling particularly pressured to keep up educational programs during this crisis, even though they have little support to do so. This is increasing stress on many overwhelmed families. This conversation between two school psychologists and a child psychiatrist will focus on the practical, to reassure families on how formal and informal learning can happen on the home front.

Video & Resources

COVID-19 has profoundly heightened anxiety in the autism community internationally. Our families and organizations are struggling to provide a stable environment for children, youth and adults with autism spectrum disorder. Able adults with ASD are also feeling the strain. ACT has invited three respected mental health clinicians, who have presented for ACT on autism and mental health, to answer questions on ‘Anxiety and COVID-19’.

Video & Resources

The Challenges of Advocacy During a Pandemic

Dr. Anthony Bailey, Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, UBC, interviews three active members of BC’s special needs community about their efforts to encourage the B.C. government to protect special needs children and their families.

Panelists include:

  • Karla Verschoor, Executive Director of Inclusion BC
  • Tracy Humphreys, Chair of BCEdAcccess
  • Deborah Pugh, Executive Director of ACT – Autism Community Training

ACT is gathering information to support families during the COVID-19 crisis, including resources specific to those who are neuro-diverse and useful general resources. Our COVID-19 Resources page will be updated as new resources come in.

More videos from ACT’s COVID-19 educational learning live stream series

Many parents of children with diverse learning needs are feeling particularly pressured to keep up educational programs during this crisis, even though they have little support to do so. This is increasing stress on many overwhelmed families. This conversation between two school psychologists and a child psychiatrist will focus on the practical, to reassure families on how formal and informal learning can happen on the home front.

Video & Resources

COVID-19 has profoundly heightened anxiety in the autism community internationally. Our families and organizations are struggling to provide a stable environment for children, youth and adults with autism spectrum disorder. Able adults with ASD are also feeling the strain. ACT has invited three respected mental health clinicians, who have presented for ACT on autism and mental health, to answer questions on ‘Anxiety and COVID-19’.

Video & Resources

Coping with Behavior Challenges during COVID-19 – Setting Realistic Expectations for Families

Part 2 with Dr. Brenda Fossett

View the PDF handout for Dr. Fossett’s presentation.

More videos from Dr. Brenda Fossett:


Part 1 with Dr. Richard Stock


View the PDF handout for Dr. Stock’s presentation.

More videos from Dr. Richard stock:

The focus of this presentation is to help parents whose children have limited language skills, making it difficult for them to understand why their usual routines have been totally disrupted by COVID-19. The idea is to provide some simple “tools for your toolbox” to help family members prevent and/or reduce the occurrence of problem behaviours by setting realistic expectations, communicating clearly, and establishing structure and routines to get through the day.

The presenters are both Board Certified Behavior Analysts who teach in the Applied Behavior Analysis Program at Capilano University. Specialists in Positive Behavior Support, they have many years of experience in working directly with families to help them improve family routines. This presentation is relevant to those on the autism spectrum, as well as those with intellectual disabilities generally.

Presenters

Dr. Richard Stock, Board Certified Behaviour Analyst and Instructor in the Applied Behavior Analysis – Autism (ABA-A) department at Capilano University

Dr. Brenda Fossett, Board Certified Behaviour Analyst and Instructor in the Applied Behavior Analysis – Autism (ABA-A) department at Capilano University


Video Sponsor

CIRCA logo

The production of this video has been sponsored by the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research and Collaboration in Autism (CIRCA) at the University of British Columbia.


ACT is gathering information to support families during the COVID-19 crisis, including resources specific to those who are neuro-diverse and useful general resources. Our COVID-19 Resources page will be updated as new resources come in.

More videos from ACT’s COVID-19 educational learning live stream series

Many parents of children with diverse learning needs are feeling particularly pressured to keep up educational programs during this crisis, even though they have little support to do so. This is increasing stress on many overwhelmed families. This conversation between two school psychologists and a child psychiatrist will focus on the practical, to reassure families on how formal and informal learning can happen on the home front.

Video & Resources

COVID-19 has profoundly heightened anxiety in the autism community internationally. Our families and organizations are struggling to provide a stable environment for children, youth and adults with autism spectrum disorder. Able adults with ASD are also feeling the strain. ACT has invited three respected mental health clinicians, who have presented for ACT on autism and mental health, to answer questions on ‘Anxiety and COVID-19’.

Video & Resources