The Annapolis Valley Chapter of Autism Nova Scotia officially opened in 1996. They were formerly known as the Valley Autism Support Team (VAST). In 2012, they joined with Autism Nova Scotia to work together to enhance programs and services in the Annapolis Valley and support provincial initiatives. This chapter is led by a group of dedicated volunteers with the support of Autism Nova Scotia, and has now expanded to 65 families and joined 2200 members across the province.
Programs in the Annapolis Valley Chapter include: Summer day camp for ages 5-21 (school age), Arts and crafts program for children up to 10 years old running in the Annapolis Royal and Aldershot area, Music Therapy sessions for children from ages 5 to 18 years old at the Kingston & District Elementary School and the New Minas Elementary, Therapeutic horseback riding, Teen social group for middle school/high school students, Adult social group offered to high functioning individuals no longer attending high school, Family events offered to people diagnosed with autism and those who care for them, and a Lending Library.
The Bedford/Sackville Chapter of Autism Nova Scotia provides recreation and leisure opportunities and events to families and individuals with autism, as well as facilitates parent support meetings the first Tuesday of each month. Open to caregivers of people with ASD, these meetings are an opportunity to share and learn from other families experiencing the challenges that can come with caring for a person on the spectrum. Laughter, tears, frustrations, celebration – they cover it all. Meetings take place from 7pm – 9pm at the Bedford Public Library, 15 Dartmouth Road (Wardour Centre) Bedford.
Formally known as Piece by Piece Autism Association (PPAA), the Cumberland County joined as a chapter of Autism Nova Scotia in 2014. Over the past 5 years, we have grown from a support group, to now offering many programs and services to families, as well as spreading awareness throughout our communities. We offer family swims, bowling, and other outings as well as summer respite for families.
The South Shore Chapter of Autism Nova Scotia officially opened its doors in April 2009. They were formerly known as the Autism Centre Society of the South Shore (ACSS). They had a mission to advance the personal development, equal opportunity and participation of people with autism in a safe, respectful and supportive community. In 2012, they joined with Autism Nova Scotia to work together to enhance programs and services in the South Shore and support provincial initiatives. With a satellite lending library at the Autism Centre on Hebbville Academy Campus , the South Shore Chapter is run by a group of dedicated volunteers with the support of Autism Nova Scotia. All donations support the delivery of programs and resources in the South Shore community.
Programs on the South Shore include: Resource Lending Library, Art program, Swim program, Yoga program, Sponsorship of three families to attend Camp Brigadoon, Summer camp bursaries of $100 each, Adult recreation program and a grad bursary of $500 for a graduating student diagnosed with ASD and continuing their post-secondary studies.
The South West Chapter of Autism Nova Scotia officially began with a group of dedicated parents in 2009. Since then, the Chapter has grown to offer direct support to families through programs such as the Autism Arts program in partnership with the Yarmouth Art Gallery. South West Chapter has also benefited from an Inclusion Recreation Coordinator, who supported children with autism to participate in summer recreation programs in 2012.
Programs in the Yarmouth area include: YACRO Summer Recreation Respite Program, Autism family camp sponsorship to Camp Brigadoon, Autism Arts, Movie day in November, 4th Annual Autism Education Day.
Before becoming an official chapter of Autism Nova Scotia in 2014, the Strait Area Chapter started as a committed team of individuals who regularly participated in the Annual Walk the Walk for Autism. In 2010, The Strait Area Autism Group was formed and started with a small support group, which soon grew to organize activities and events in Port Hawkesbury. Partnering with Special Olympics and Inverness Richmond Early Childhood Intervention in 2013, they helped to create opportunities and expand their reach in the community. Since then, the chapter has grown to offer programs, such as: March Break day camps, Summer Camps for children and young adults, field trips and outings, swimming, fitness classes, organized parties, and iPad programs in schools
The Truro Chapter of Autism Nova Scotia began about five years ago with Ed Chats and participating in The Walk the Walk for Autism. The Ed Chats were held by Lori Logue as a way to share information with parents. These topics included the PEERS Program focusing on making and keeping friends, transition periods, and a variety of guest speakers. Over the last five years our Walk the Walk participation has been growing with more and more families coming out to participate. From the Ed Chats and the Walk the Walk we have grown into hosting Parent Share Sessions monthly, and currently planning other family friendly events.