Attending an Autism Conference

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Recently, I discussed some tips on traveling without your autistic child. I specifically discussed how I had attended my annual writer’s conference in San Francisco and how I dealt with leaving my child for several days.

This time, I went away for one night to attend a two-day autism conference. The conference was called the “All Ages and Abilities Autism/Aspergers Conference.” It was a two day conference that took place in Huntington Beach, California.

Why do I attend autism conferences?

I may have discussed this in past blogs, but I feel the topic is important.

I attend conferences for two reasons.

Reason number one is that in California EVERY parent of a regional center client is entitled to one free conference a year.

I have discovered over the years that not every parent of a client knows this little tidbit. I do not think regional centers go out of their way to advertise this all that much. Why? Well, it does cost a regional center money at a time when money is tight. That’s what I think.

So why do I go?

Because I know I can ask for my one conference and they will still pay for it. You do have to ask, though.

What’s the worst that can happen? They can – one day – tell me that regional centers no longer fund one conference per year for parents of clients.

What is my second reason for attending conferences?

I also attend conferences in order to stay connected to the autism community. I find that attending a conference is a fantastic way to do this.

I get to stay connected to the latest information and topics and issues that concern me. I get to listen to many different speakers who are professionals in the autism world.

All of this directly affects my child, so I feel I need to do it.

Now, while attending a conference, I am not a newbie so I no longer write down every little thing. I do not “know it all,” but I do know a lot.

Still, I go because I feel I need to keep connected with current trends and research and have discovered that a conference is a great way to do this.

Is every conference out there worth attending?

I have attended some conferences that were not very well organized and the professionals they brought in to speak were rather mediocre.

Not every conference is successful. I am been to enough to know the difference.

In my next blog, I will discuss conferences more specifically – the positive and the negative.

To Find Kimberly Kaplan:

www.kimberlykaplan.com
www.smashwords.com or Amazon Kindle ebook “A Parents’ Guide to Early Autism Intervention”
Twitter: @tipsautismmom

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