ACT is Canada’s leading independent, not-for-profit specializing in evidence-informed resources for the autism and special needs community. In addition to developing our own videos, guides and live events, including web streaming, ACT provides an unrivaled information portal that responds to the diverse needs of our community across the lifespan, including the voice of adults, in multiple languages.
ACT’s Board and Staff are committed to the future
In the year since the B.C. government cancelled ACT’s contract to support community-based information and support, ACT’s Board of Directors and Staff has gone through a process of strategic planning. We have renewed our commitment to provide families, provincially and nationally, with the best in community-focused information and training. We have been encouraged by the overwhelming support evidenced in surveys done in 2016 & 2017.
ACT’s 2018 training schedule is set, including live web streaming to support training nationally.
Our many online resources have been renewed and are serving an increasing number of users:
- You can explore ACT’s B.C. focused resources here.
- The Autism Information Database has expanded and is overseen by an impressive international panel. It provides an unrivaled portal to 1300 evidence-informed resources sourced internationally – there are several hundred more ‘records’ awaiting approval.
- Autism Videos @ ACT now has nearly 30 videos available free with more awaiting editing.
Why is ACT committed to continuing as an independent voice for the special needs community?
ACT’s approach and the resources we have built over a decade, with the help of so many in the autism/special needs community, are not duplicated by government or by other agencies. As a not-for-profit, led by a committed Board of Directors, ACT engages in the creative, cost-effective use of web-based technology, online information databases and social media, with the support of a network of experts who volunteer their time.
The 13,000 B.C. families seeking help for their children with ASD, families of children with other special needs, and the thousands of professionals who find ACT’s resources invaluable, cannot rely solely on email and telephone support from a government agency. They need access, at their convenience, to reliable online information resources, including training, provided by respected researchers and clinicians. Parents and self-advocates also need to source objective resources to help them advocate for their children and themselves when they are denied government services.
ACT can play a role to support families and professionals internationally
We also see ACT playing an important role nationally and internationally – there is a vacuum of readily accessible best practice information and training world-wide, especially in languages other than English. For all of these reasons, we don’t want to pull the plug on what the ACT community has developed. But to build a self-sustaining not-for-profit we have to diversify our income, which is why we are appealing to the families and professionals who make use of our services, as well as to foundations and private companies.
Reflecting back and thinking to the future
20 years ago, reliable information and training for families were painfully scarce. The landscape has been transformed, ‘information’ is everywhere, but with 119,000,000 hits for a Google search for “autism”, many families are vulnerable to charlatans eager to take advantage of their confusion. ACT provides a vital non-commercial alternative to a random Google search – a portal to reputable online resources. What ACT provides cannot be duplicated by a passive government service. As a dynamic, community-based organization that respects families, self-advocates and professionals, ACT has earned the respect of the autism community. With your support we can continue this vital work and make it available to families across Canada and internationally.
Donate to become a ‘Friend of ACT’
ACT has the financial resources to continue through 2018, but we need to build independent sources of funding if we are to continue our work long-term. Please consider a monthly or one-time donation so that we can build a sustainable financial future for what is a unique information service. For ACT’s current fundraising priorities please see Donations.
Sponsorship allows ACT to provide more live events. For more information on how you or your organization could be involved in sponsoring ACT’s online or live events, see Sponsorship.
Other ways to support ACT’s Mission – Volunteer
ACT is a small organization with a large presence because of the support we receive from our volunteers, donors and sponsors. Collectively these efforts enrich our services immeasurably.