• Organizations (links to the direct websites are in purple):

    Parent Network of WNY
    Parent Network of WNY is a not-for-profit agency that provides education and resources for families of individuals with special needs (birth through adulthood) and for professionals.
    Parent Network of WNY provides 1-on-1 Support and education through resources, workshops and support groups to assist families of individuals with disabilities to understand their disability and navigate the support service system.  The majority of Parent Network of WNY’s staff and board members are parents of children with disabilities, which provides a unique perspective, personal experience and empathy to the families we reach. Since its reorganization in 2001, Parent Network of WNY has served around 10,000 people a year.

    ECDC The ECDC provides free information, referral, technical assistance and support to families, professionals, and community agencies concerned with children birth to five with suspected or diagnosed delays or disabilities. 

    Independent Living in Olean Directions in Independent Living is a center dedicated to offering limitless opportunities to all people with disabilities. 

    The ReHabilitation Center The ReHabilitaton Center can assist families in a wide variety of areas including but not limited to Crisis Response services; Skill Building Services; Respite Services; Individualized Care Coordination 

    Office of People with Developmental Disabilities The New York State Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) is responsible for coordinating services for more than 130,000 New Yorkers with developmental disabilities, including intellectual disabilities, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorders, and other neurological impairments. It provides services directly and through a network of approximately 700 nonprofit service providing agencies, with about 80 percent of services provided by the private nonprofits and 20 percent provided by state-run services.

    Healthy Home of Allegany County Can assist individuals in their home who currently have Medicaid and qualify for additional services based on intake

    Southern Tier Environments for Living Southern Tier Environments for Living (also known as STEL, Inc.) provides rehabilitative and support services to persons with mental illness and other disabilities in Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, and southern Erie counties. Our service spectrum includes residential treatment group homes & apartments, supported housing, single room occupancy housing, vocational rehabilitation, case management, social supports.  

    NY Start NYSTART is a community-based program that provides crisis prevention and response services to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities who present with complex behavioral and mental health needs, and to their families and others in the community who provide support.


    UPCOMING EVENTS (not school sanctioned but provided by partner organizations):

    Saturday April 6th 8L45 -12:30 at Banchetti by Rizzo in Amherst - ASD emerging Sexuality and Safety Across the Lifespan - call 716-633-2275 for assistance with registering:

    On Saturday, April 6, 2019, Autism Services, Inc. and the Autism Society Western New York are pleased to present “ASD: Emerging Sexuality and Safety Across the Lifespan” presented by Dr. Lori Jeanne Peloquin.  For over 30 years, Dr. Peloquin has treated individuals with developmental and learning disorders and their families, focusing on children, teens and young adults with Anxiety, Regulatory, Sensory Processing, Developmental and Autism Spectrum  Disorders. She holds joint community faculty appointments in Psychiatry and Pediatrics at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry.  Dr. Peloquin has given workshops on such themes as Sexuality and Autism, Autism and Anxiety, and How to Tell your Child about Having Autism Spectrum  Disorder. She also mentors professionals in Mental Health, Occupational, Music, and Speech-Language therapies, and allied fields.  She has been on the faculty of the Interdisciplinary Council on Developmental and Learning Disorders since its inception and was one of the first to receive a DIR/Floortime Model Certificate from them.  Her writings include articles in the Autism-Asperger’s Digest on the DIR/Floortime Model. She was recognized as Outstanding Psychologist of the Year by the Genesee Valley Psychological Association for her leadership and contributions to the community.

     This workshop will provide an understanding of emerging sexuality in individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities across the lifespan, including the importance of addressing these issues long before puberty and adolescence. Dr. Peloquin will provide insight into the emotional and physical aspects of sexuality and relationships for individuals with ASD as well as important considerations for their parents and professionals who support them.  Specific topics will include parent and staff concerns such as inappropriate public display, aggressive pursuit of person of interest, and possible abuse. She will address the rights of individuals to be sexual beings, gender and sexual identity issues, legal and ethical concerns, and specific challenges based on individual differences. Specific safety issues such as internet dangers, pornography, and dealing with law enforcement will also be highlighted. 

    Friday, December 7th –from 6:00 – 8:00 pm Au-Some Aquarium at the Aquarium of Niagara.  Au-Some Aquarium is a fun night dedicated to families with sensory, physical or other challenges who could benefit from a calmer and quieter environment.  The theme of the night is PENGUINS and there will be a penguin show!!   We will have art activities, gluten free snacks, a sensory friendly sea lion show (at 7:00) and the touch tank.  For members of the aquarium, it is free of charge.  For non-members, it is $10 per family or $5 per person from residential facilities or groups.  The aquarium has made many recent renovations and is looking really good!  A copy of the flyer is attached.  Please note that the tank for the sea lions is under maintenance so there will be no water or sea lions.  HOWEVER, we will have a PENGUIN “show” up close and personal!  A copy of the flyer is attached.

     Saturday, December 8th from 9:00 am – 3:00 pm - Unique Opportunity – FREE have professional pictures made of your family In 2018, Help-Portrait Buffalo will serve Oishei Children’s Hospital patients and their families, in addition to a few other community organizations, and provide them with beautiful portrait prints just in time for the holidays, free of charge.  They will have makeup artists and will deliver the pictures to you.

    WHEN: Saturday, December 8 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

    WHERE: Oishei Children’s Hospital – Alford Auditorium

    BOOK YOUR APPOINTMENT!    Help-Portrait Buffalo is here to give you and your family the gift of a free portrait (that’s right, no cost at all)! Visit helpportraitbuffalo.com/2018 to schedule your photo session time, and check out the details on the page for more information about what you can expect to experience.  We look forward to making memories with you!  A copy of the flyer with more information is attached.

     Sunday, December 9th, activities start at 1:30 and concert is at 2:30pm – BPO Kids – Exceptional Kids – Jingle Bell Jam -  Sing along with the orchestra, enjoy cookies and milk with Santa, and get in the holiday spirit with your whole family. It’s a jolly good time! The BPO will once again be a Toys for Tots drop-off location.   Concerts take place at Kleinhans Music Hall, 3 Symphony Circle, Buffalo, NY 14201.  Special Discounted Rate: $15 per family per concert (includes all members in household)

    TO PURCHASE TICKETS: PHONE: (716) 885-5000 and please ask for Rachael and mention “BPO Kids Exceptional Kids”  You can also get tickets at the door.

    Parking: Is available in the lot for $5 per concert or on the street for free – however we will be able to give you $5 to offset parking charge if you sign in at our welcome table in the lobby. A copy of the flyer is attached.  Heads-up – this is for sensory seekers, in the past, children have been given bells to jingle throughout the concert.

     Friday, December 14th from 5:30 – 8:00 pm- Au-Some Evening at Explore & More Children’s Museum – 300 Gleed Avenue, East Aurora.  Free for families with autism.  This fun night features art activities, gym activities, music therapy, friends from Paws for Love and more.  This is the last au-some Christmas at the East Aurora location and it will be a holiday theme including pictures with a patient Santa!  A copy of the flyer is attached. 

     Sunday, December 16th at 10:00 am – Sensory Friendly performance of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” at Theatre of Youth.  This is a very special performance with a jazz combo.  The show is about an hour long and is just like the TV special.   The sensory friendly shows are designed to make all people feel comfortable – kids can move around and there are no reserved seats.  The children will have an opportunity to ask questions and take a picture with the actors at the end of the show.  With the code “1N68”, tickets can be purchased online or through the box office for only $5 per ticket. You can buy a ticket at the door but you may have to wait in line.  All ages are welcome!  A copy of the flyer is attached.

     Friday, December 21st  from 7 – 8:30 pm – SnapFit at Rolly Pollies at all three locations- Children with special needs and their families and friends are invited to enjoy SN@P open play for fun in a relaxed and supportive environment. We lower the music, limit participants and work with each family to create the best environment possible for each child to play! Sn@P FIT Gym is for children ages 12 and under.  The cost is $15.00 for the first child and $5.00 each additional sibling.  Reservations are required 24 hours in advance. Call to reserve your spot:

    East Amherst 716.689.6151         Orchard Park 716.662.7424             North Buffalo 716.833.3318  http://rpwny.com/special-needs-play.htm

     Sensory Sundays at Skyzone, 425 Cayuga Road – Cheektowaga, NY 14225. 

    No music will be played and this time is dedicated to families who can benefit from a calmer and quieter environment.  Special pricing of $10 per jumper or $25 per family.  A copy of the flyer is attached.   This event runs every Sunday.

     Saturday, January 5th at 10:00 am – Sensory Friendly Show of the movie Mary Poppins Returns - Flix Stadium 4901 Transit Road  Lancaster, NY 14043 – Dipson  sensory friendly family film series slated to run the first Saturday of every month at 10am. The films will be presented with the theatre lights on and the sound lowered.  Dipson Theatres, Inc. acknowledges the needs of social engagement and environmental factors affecting people on the autism spectrum, and hope that this family film series will create an entertainment venue for families to enjoy new releases in a presentation that will suit unique and special needs.  Admission is $7.75 per person for both children and adults. Flix will also offer a weekly raffle for attendees to win concession prizes and promotional movie gifts.  http://flix10.dipsontheatres.com/content/Sensory+Friendly+Family+Film+Series


    TICKETS - Friday, February 8th from 6-8 pm - Sensory Night at WNED’s KidFest. We have worked for a year to make this happen and it will be an opportunity for your families to meet Princess Presto, Clifford, Super Why, Daniel Tiger and Katerina Kittycat on Febraury 8th from 6-8 pm at WNED studios and participate in lots of other family friendly activities.  The tickets are limited to 250 people so they may go quickly.  The regular prices are Family pack of 4 for $30, Adults $10; Kids 2 years and up $8 and under 2 years are free.


    Please use the password “sensorynight” to access the private page:       kidfestsensorynight.eventbrite.com

    Olean TOP Soccer - soccer program in Olean for stduents with disabilities ages 5-12

    All About Me Conference - offered through Parent Network of WNY

    CASE parent group in Jamestown - for families of students with autism spectrum disorders

    Disability Awareness Events

    Strengthening Family Celebration

    Sensory Needs of Young Children

    Daemen College Sunday Sport Program

    Sensory Sundays at Skyzone

    BPO opportunities for families

    Aquarium Time for students with Autism

    Theater of Youth Sensory Friendly Performances

    Mom Respite Weekend   Respite application  Respite confidential Health Form

    Young Adult Activates Group in Olean - various activates for young adults ages 15-25: Contact Tiffany Whipple, Youth Project Coordinator, at 716-260-3215 for more information

    GiGI's Playhouse:  The Down syndrome community is so excited to share this news with you!  A group of parents and professionals have come together to bring a GiGi's Playhouse to WNY.  This is a Down syndrome achievement center.  We will be able to provide educational, therapeutic, and social programming to individuals with Down syndrome, free of charge and across the age range.  To learn more about our Playhouse, follow this link https://gigisplayhouse.org/buffalo.