Autsit: Meditation for people on the autism / neurodiverse spectrum

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autsitThe Autsit meditation group is for people on the autism / neurodiverse spectrum.  The facilitator, Anlor Davin, is Lay Ordained in the Soto Zen tradition but the group does not follow any formal practices apart from basic upright sitting. Beginners are very welcome.

Click HERE to sign up for our mailing list.

Internet Autistic Meditation

We are now facilitating meditation online via Zoom (continuing post-Covid) on the 1st and 3rd Sundays of each month. The 1st Sunday meet is at 11am to allow people from Europe to join, and the 3rd Sunday meet is at 5:00pm (Pacific Times). This is free and open to autistic and other neurodivergent people as well as their respectful allies. The meetings begin with a brief introduction, followed by 30 minutes of meditation, then a short talk and group discussion. To ensure security, a link to the Zoom meeting will be emailed to you some time before the actual meetings (if you are on the mailing list) so check your mail for that as the meeting approaches. The links will be different for each meeting. For security please do not share the link on social media!!

(For history buffs, here is our old, pioneering, Online Meditation Hall, now on hiatus)



Project ENABLE is Seeking Librarians to Participate in Video Interviews

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project enable

Project ENABLE is seeking six librarians to participate in five video interviews with librarians who have addressed any of the challenges below (number and type of librarian needed). Interviews are 30-45 minutes in length and are done using Skype or Zoom. Participating librarians will receive a modest stipend ($100) for participation.

  • Creative application of UDL principles to library programs, even when faced with small budgets and limited choices (1 academic or school librarian)
  • Navigation of cultural expectation, taboos and stereotypes around disability issues to avoid false assumptions and biases (e.g., attributing behavioral challenges of black children to “misbehaving” or “being bad” rather than to ADHD or Autism even when told they have the condition) (1 academic or school librarian)
  • Use of Universal Design as a framework for adapting or replacing inaccessible library facilities and/or furniture (1 academic or school librarian)
  • Provision of appropriate library services to teen and/or adult patrons with developmental disabilities (1 academic or public librarian)
  • Inexpensive ways to make my library space accessible (2 academic, public, or school librarian)

We can send questions in advance, if requested. Our current, completed video interviews are available on the Project ENABLE site if you want to get an idea of what we are looking for. Just go to https://projectenable.syr.edu and  look under tab “Resources” and “Video” format.

Please contact Dr. Ruth Small, Director, Project ENABLE, at drruth@syr.edu to volunteer for one of these video interviews or for more information. Thank you.

(Please note:  This blog post is a revision/clarification of the June 9 post)

Seeking Video Presenters for IMLS Funded Project, “Library Services to Patrons with Disabilities: A Problem-Based Learning Approach,”

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Project ENABLE (Expanding Non-discriminatory Access By Librarians Everywhere), developed a decade ago at Syracuse University and supported with IMLS grant funds, is a comprehensive training resource designed for library professionals, from all types of libraries, in order to build capacity for providing equitable access and services to students with disabilities.

The current grant project, entitled “Library Services to Patrons with Disabilities: A Problem-Based Learning Approach,” partners Project Enable with Infopeople to provide online training covering a range of relevant topics and issues in the area of libraries and disabilities..  As part of the training objectives in this latest grant, project staff is tasked with providing potential video presenters to address the following topics:

  • How can I creatively apply UDL principles for librarians when faced with small budgets and limited choices? (1) academic or school
  • How do I navigate cultural expectation, taboos and stereotypes around disability issues to avoid false assumptions and biases (e.g., attributing behavioral challenges of black children to “misbehaving” or “being bad” rather than to ADHD or Autism even when told they have the condition)? (1) academic or school
  • How do I use Universal Design as a framework for adapting or replacing inaccessible library facilities and furniture for my library? (1) academic or school
  • How can I provide appropriate library services to teen and adult patrons with developmental disabilities? (1) academic or public
  • What are some inexpensive ways to make my library space accessible? (2) academic, public, or school

If  you are interested in being a video presenter on one or more of the topics listed, please send an email to Suzanne Schriar with a brief bio, which includes your expertise in the area of libraries and disabilities.  Please also include a brief overview of your potential presentation.

project enableinfopeople


Programming for Adults with Developmental Disabilities: Why and How An Infopeople Hosted Webinar

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May 21st, 2020 10:00 AM
11:00 AM

Start Time: Pacific – 10 AM, Mountain – 11 AM, Central – 12 PM, Eastern – 1 PM

Barbara KlipperCarrie BanksPresenters: Carrie Banks and Barbara Klipper

Often residential and day programs for people with developmental disabilities bring clients to their local public library to visit, however, these groups don’t really engage with the library’s many services or programs. Adults with developmental disabilities also come to the library on their own. Many times, individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities are directed to youth services and not the adult departments which are more appropriate. This confusion could present a barrier to offering these patrons more than just a place to visit.

Would you like to offer programming for adults with developmental disabilities rather than just a place to visit? Join us for this one-hour webinar devoted to an exploration of a range of topics related to programming in your libraries for the adults with developmental disabilities in your community. Presenters Carrie Banks (Brooklyn Public Library) and Barbara Klipper (Autism Welcome Here grant) will cover the barriers and benefits of programming, best practices, and what is meant by a “culture of inclusion.” They’ll also leave you with some sample program ideas you can bring to your library and give you a preview of what else will be covered in the book on this subject they are currently writing for the publishing division of ALA. And, of course, there will be time for your questions and concerns to be voiced and addressed.

At the end of this one-hour webinar, participants will:

  • Be able to identify at least three things that keep many libraries from offering adequate programming and services to adults with developmental disabilities, as well as responses to those barriers
  • Be familiar with what is meant by a library “culture of inclusion” and how it supports programming
  • Understand the importance of involving self-advocates in planning and implementation, and of partnering with organizations in the community
  • Be able to identify at least three types of library programs that would be fun and interesting for an adult with developmental disabilities.

This webinar will be of interest to: Public library directors, adult services, outreach and programming librarians and library staff.

This webinar is made possible by a Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Lifelong Learning Continuing Education grant and Infopeople, the Califa training arm in collaboration with Syracuse University and Project ENABLE.

Webinars are free of charge, you can pre-register by clicking on the Register Now

button on this page. If you pre-registered you will receive an email with login link and a reminder email the day before the event.

To check your system’s compatibility with GoTo Webinar and/or download software for your computer/tablet/smartphone,

Speaker’s slides: Will be available the morning of the webinar.

Illinois Residents: The Arc of Illinois will be Holding a Webinar on Autism Services in Illinois

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April 14 @ 12:00 pm1:00 pm

Please register for the Illinois Lifespan Program Monthly Lunchtime Webinar – TAP: An Overview of Illinois Autism Services on Apr 14, 2020 12:00 PM CDT at:


TAP: An Overview of Illinois Autism Services

Presented by Shannon Dyson, Quality Coordinator and Mary Kelly, Statewide Coordinator for TAP.

Attendees will learn about The Autism Program of Illinois, (TAP) and about the various autism services offered by the 15 TAP service centers throughout the state of Illinois.  Attendees will also learn about autism research being conducted by TAP university partners.  Participants will get a sneak peek into our newly redesigned website and we’ll introduce you to our new service referral portal coming soon!  Finally, we will have time for questions from webinar attendees.

About the Presenters:

Shannon Dyson is a graduate of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville with a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in psychology. She obtained her doctorate degree in School Psychology from the University of Iowa. Over her career, Shannon has worked in a variety of settings including inpatient, outpatient, home, school, residential facility and detention centers. During her graduate training she worked primarily with children and adolescents with autism who engaged in severe problem behavior. She completed her predoctoral internship at the Marcus Autism Center in Atlanta, Georgia where she provided services in skill acquisition, intensive feeding, intensive toilet training and problem behavior reduction. Most recently, she managed day treatment services for the Complex Behavior Program at the Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. In addition to overseeing clinical services, she collaborated with professionals and other community members in order to coordinate funding and community supports for clients.

Mary Kelly is the Statewide Coordinator for The Autism Program (TAP) of Illinois.  In that role, she works with TAP’s partner agencies throughout the state to ensure the very best in evidence-based autism services are provided to Illinois’ children per the state grant.

Her professional career includes work for various grant-funded projects, including the IMLS-funded Targeting Autism grant project at the Illinois State Library.  In that role, Mary developed and conducted autism sensitivity training for librarians, presented at statewide and regional conferences, planned and facilitated annual national forums and provided consultation statewide to Illinois librarians and staff.  Working with grant partners, Dominican University and Syracuse University, she also facilitated two-day Train-the-Trainer autism workshops and provided subject content for autism training modules through the Project E.N.A.B.L.E online training platform.

Also active in state and local community engagement, Mary serves as Secretary on the board of directors for The Arc of Illinois, the state’s largest advocacy organization for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities, and serves on the Board of Directors of Autism Support of Central Illinois, a local non-profit that provides resources, support and monthly sensory-friendly programming for families in central Illinois.

Mary holds a B.A. in Psychology and a M.S. in Management and Organizational Behavior from Benedictine University.  She is the mother of four children, one diagnosed with autism.  She resides in Springfield with her husband, children and her dog, Sweetie.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

**Please note that there are no CEUs for our Lunchtime Webinars.

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