The Canadian Chinese Autism Awakening Center (CAAC) successfully held a public welfare lecture at Scarborough Church, 410 Goldhawk Trail: The Speech and Speaking Skills of Children with Autism. The lecture invited a veteran, registered language training expert and clinical director Vivian Yau, who has 15 years of language training experience, as a speaker to train Chinese parents of children with autism, and to teach them how to conduct language training. A total of about 30 autistic families participated in this lecture. With the joint efforts of more than ten volunteers and parents, the event was a complete success.
Vivian first introduced the role of speech and speech therapists in the treatment of autism. She then introduced several common treatments, the service resources and interventions that parents can currently use in Toronto. In the lecture, she also informed parents about the definitions of ASD children’s verbal communication skills, so that parents can identify and observe the disease in the family. At the final questioning stage, the parents responded enthusiastically and asked questions. Vivian also patiently answered questions and left contact information to facilitate subsequent communication. Parents said that the lectures have a good guiding role in understanding their children’s condition and seeking various resources.
The seminar was organized by the non-profit organization CAAC. The organizers and staff were volunteers from Great Toronto Area (GTA). Most of them are working staff, and they used the off-hours to get from Vaughan, downtown or North York to participate in the event. May, Ph.D. in Psychology and Child Development also translated the lecture courseware in advance and gave it to everyone to preview. She also served as a translator in the lecture. It is convenient for parents who had difficulties commutating in English to better understand the content of the lecture. To help parents better learn and communicate, the event also provided child care and games, and prepared a lot of snacks.
It is worth mentioning that due to limited funding, CAAC does not have its own venue for activities, and can only temporarily borrow a basement in the church to hold events. At present, CAAC is working hard on fundraising, hoping to get support and funding from the government and the community, in order to provide better help and guidance for the growing number of Chinese children with autism.