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libraries and autism: we're connected

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Autism Welcome Here GrantLibraries and Autism is honored to be sponsoring an ongoing grant offering, started in 2016, called:

AUTISM WELCOME HERE: Library Programs, Services and More.

** See Previous Grant Winners' Projects and Materials Here **

The response to the first four cycles of this grant (2016-2019) has been impressive, and speaks not only to the ongoing need, but to the willingness and effectiveness of librarians all over the country who are doing amazing things. Thank you all for your applications, and your efforts to serve people with Autism Spectrum Disorder in your library.

The application period for the 2019 grant cycle is now closed.
The submission deadline was Dec. 1, 2018.
The grant funding period is April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020.

The winner(s) will be notified by March 1, 2019.

Applications for the 2020 grant will be accepted starting September 1, 2019.

Download the ADDM's (Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network)
2018 Community Report on Autism HERE.

In 2008 the Scotch Plains Public Library and the Fanwood Memorial Library, together with our partners, created Libraries and Autism: We're Connected. This award winning project produced a customer service training video and website primarily for library staff to help them serve individuals with autism and their families more effectively. The video focuses on what you need to know about autism and will empower you with specific techniques to offer more inclusive service to this growing and underserved population.

The resources here on the website, along with the on-site training workshops which have been presented to hundreds of librarians around the country, expand on our customer service video to address the real world implementation of best practices and universal service for people with ASD and their families and helps staff to improve their ability to provide excellent, inclusive, universal customer service to everyone who uses the library.

Every library we visit tells us the same story of increasing numbers of families dealing with ASD who are turning to their public library for resources, programs and a community center where they are welcome. We stress communication, customer service, using individuals on the spectrum and with other developmental disabilities as staff and volunteers in the library, programming strategies that work, connecting with local experts, and the importance of empowering staff to be willing to 'do something'.


March 8, 2019
ECPCL - Essex County (NJ) Public Children's Librarians
Maplewood Memorial Library - 10:00 a.m.

April 18, 2019
Young Adult Services Division of the Suffolk County Library Association
West Babylon (NY) Public Library - 10:00 a.m.

December 13, 2018
Southern Maryland Regional Library Association, Charlotte Hall, MD - 2 workshops

October 4, 2018
Nebraska Library Assoc./Nebraska School Library Assoc. 2018
Joint Annual Conference ** Relevance Through Connection: Serving Library Patrons on the Autism Spectrum
Lincoln, NE, Pre-Conference session

June 24, 2017
ALA 2017 Annual Conference Chicago
Taking on Autism: A Movement for Collaborative Solutions - 8:30 a.m.

Click HERE to see
where else we've presented in the past

For information on how to schedule an
In-Depth Training Workshop
for your own library or group,
please contact us at

button    Take a look at this Libraries and Autism FEATURE:
   Life Animated: A Story of Sidekicks, Heroes, and Autism by Ron Suskind

button To receive a free "Libraries and Autism: We're Connected" Decal or a copy of the 2014 re-edited update of the DVD for your library, please contact us at and be sure to include your mailing address.

We encourage you to explore this site and make free use of our support resources.
email your comments and questionsPlease contact us anytime with questions, inquiries, comments or progamming suggestions, and take the time to let us know if the video and any of these materials have been of use to you.

Special thanks to Ben, Brianna and Marco and their families,
without whom this video would not have been possible.

Library Connections
We acknowledge the invaluable contributions of:

Adrienne Robertiello, Community Autism Educator for Children's Specialized Hospital and founder of Community Partnership for People with Autism, who inspired this project and helped create our logo, graphics and customizable resources.

Dr. Linda Meyer, Executive Director, Autism New Jersey .

Dr. Jill Harris, Ph.D. Director of program development and the ABA program at Children's Specialized Hospital

Cheryl O'Connor, Executive Director, LibraryLinkNJ

The Staff of Scotch Plains Public Library and Fanwood Memorial Library.

Video Director and Producer, Mary Olive Smith.

|| Home || Watch this video || Use these resources || Access these links || Expand your knowledge || Strategies that work
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All content is copyright Ⓒ 2008 - 2018 by Libraries and Autism and Fanwood (NJ) Memorial Library.
Free non-commercial use of any of these materials is permitted and encouraged to support autism awareness and inclusion.
Please acknowledge this project and link back to our site.