Supporting Individuals on the Autism Spectrum and their Families

Autism Baby

If you have concerns about your child’s development, please call

Child Development Infoline (CDI) at 1-800-505-7000.

In 2000, 1,377 or 1.86% of children ages 3-21 who received special education services in Connecticut have autism. In 2014-2015, 8,278or 11.3% of children with disabilities ages 3-21 who received special education services have autism (Easterseals, Inc.; November 2016). For many people with an ASD and their families, daily life is not easy. However, finding resources and planning for the future can help families improve their quality of life. The following is a list of local, state and national resources that you may find of interest.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Learn the Signs. Act Early  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD), in collaboration with a number of national partners, launched a public awareness campaign called “Learn the Signs. Act Early.”   The campaign aims to educate parents about childhood development, including early warning signs of autism and other developmental disorders, and encourages developmental screening and intervention.


This webpage provides links to many resources that focuses on improving the system of services for children and youth with ASD and other DDs:


Connecticut Guidelines for a Clinical Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder 


CT Collaborative Autism Services Resource Directory 


CT Family Support Network list of family support groups


Connecticut Medical Home Initiative for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs


Connecticut Medical Home Initiative Contact Information

Connecticut Medical home Initiative Regional Town Listing


To learn more about Connecticut's Medical Home Initiative for Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs and please visit our website.


The Child Development Infoline (CDI)

For more information on statewide ASD resources and supports or to speak to a CDI Care Coordinator, call CDI toll free at: 1-800-505-7000.


Respite and Extended Services Funds

Connecticut Medical Home Initiative at FAVOR, Inc. can provide information on respite funds and extended services.  They can be reached by calling 860-436-6544 or toll free at 1-855-436-6544

Respite is planned or emergency temporary relief that can be offered once or multiple times to family caregivers who are caring for individuals with special needs such as a disability or chronic or terminal illness.

Please note that due to the limited availability of funds, there is a $500 per family maximum per year for Respite funds, including camp within the availability of funds.


ASD Tools and Resources

Clinical Resources:


FOCUS Center for Autism

FOCUS Center for Autism operates an Extended Day Treatment Program in Canton, CT for male and female children and adolescents, ages 5-18. The program is open 9am-6pm Mon-Fri and we offer a day slot, amid day slot, and an after school program. We also offer consultation and assessment services, community education and a number of family supports. Monthly peer groups and social clubs are also available.


The Autism Center at Hospital for Special Care (HCS)


The Autism Center at Hospital for Special Care provides a variety of diagnostic, assessment and consulting services for children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorders. A full range of psychological and academic evaluations are provided at The Center. From these evaluations, we can provide the development of treatment plans, and training of caregivers, as requested by either parents or school systems.


Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Resources:


 Autism Society of America hosts a comprehensive and informative website which presents information in Spanish.


The Bilingual Autism Resource Guide (Guia Bilingue de Recursos Sobre Autismo) is a comprehensive list of resources in both English and Spanish.


The National Institutes of Health website has basic information about ASD in English and Spanish.


The National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities (NICHY) website includes basic information regarding autism in Spanish (El Autismo/PDD).

Family Support Resources:

 Autism Speaks


At Autism Speaks, our goal is to change the future for all who struggle with autism spectrum disorders. We are dedicated to funding global biomedical research into the causes, prevention, treatments, and cure for autism; to raising public awareness about autism and its effects on individuals, families, and society; and to bringing hope to all who deal with the hardships of this disorder. We are committed to raising the funds necessary to support these goals. Autism Speaks aims to bring the autism community together as one strong voice to urge the government and private sector to listen to our concerns and take action to address this urgent global health crisis. It is our firm belief that, working together, we will find the missing pieces of the puzzle.


Autism Services and Resource Connecticut (ASRC)


We provide information and referral for parents, families, caregivers and professional working with people on the spectrum.  We provide training and education for families, caregivers and other professionals and the general community. We provide training and social activities for persons on the spectrum.  We create resources in the community: support groups, social groups, trained workforce providers, job creation, community activities.  We advocate for persons on the spectrum and their families at the state and local level.  We provide community awareness and raise the level of understanding about autism within the wider community.

Connecticut Families for Effective Autism Treatment (CT FEAT)


Connecticut Families for Effective Autism Treatment (CT FEAT) is a non-profit organization formed by parents and family members to provide information and support to the families of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). Our principle goals are:  1. To provide educational and networking opportunities to families interested in treatment programs based on the principles of applied behavior analysis (ABA) and other treatments validated by research;  2. To expand the availability of high quality professional services by supporting education and training opportunities in ABA; 3. To provide information resources regarding effective treatments validated by research.   CT FEAT's resources include:  An Un-moderated "Parents Only" Internet Discussion List, Parent Resource and Networking Meetings, Speaker Events and Conferences, Scholarships for Professional Development and Parent Training Scholarships.


Connecticut Family Support Network


The Connecticut Family Support Network (CTFSN) is a statewide nonprofit family advocacy organization that exists to help families raising children with disabilities and special health care needs.  Regional and Specialty Coordinators of the CTFSN (one third of whom are parents of children on the Autism Spectrum) link families with information that will help them access supports and services and learn to advocate effectively for their own needs and the needs of their children. The CTFSN offers parent support groups, local and statewide email distribution lists, networking and socializing with other families, parent training and educational workshops, a collective voice that reaches policymakers, agency referrals, telephone support, IFSP and PPT preparation assistance and help with advocating for local programs/services.  We have a philosophy that empowers parents and we have walked in your shoes!


FAVOR is a non-profit Statewide Family Advocacy Organization serving families, children and youth dealing with a broad spectrum of behavioral and mental health needs, by providing policy and family advocacy. FAVOR is committed to improving the quality of life for children, youth and families in Connecticut by increasing accessibility to effective, culturally competent and high quality family-driven mental and behavioral health services and supports.

State Agency Resources:

A.J. Pappanikou Center for Developmental Disabilities


Our programs in innovative disability related research, training and technical assistance bring about societal change and improvement in relation to persons with disabilities. Through our association and partnership with the University of Connecticut and the University of Connecticut Health Center, we are a premier center in the northeast for innovative teaching, research, and technical assistance enhancing the quality of services and support for people with developmental disabilities and their families.


Connecticut Birth to Three System


The mission of the Birth to Three System is to strengthen the capacity of families to meet the developmental and health-related needs of their infants and toddlers who have delays or disabilities.


Department of Developmental Services (DDS) Division of Autism


Autism Division (previously the Autism Pilot Program) currently services 78 adults. DDS will be serving children and young adults who are currently receiving services through the Department of Children and Families (DCF’s) Voluntary Services Program (VSP) who meet DDS Autism Division eligibility criteria. DCF VSP is for children with behavioral health needs). Eligible participants must be at least three years of age with a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (not intellectual disabilities) who live in a family or caregiver’s home or one’s own home.


Southern Connecticut State University's Center of Excellence in Autism Spectrum Disorder


The mission of the Center for Excellence on Autism Spectrum Disorders is to serve as a statewide resource focused on developing and delivering effective, innovative training and technical assistance to pre-kindergarten through12th grade teachers, other school personnel, families, and community service providers in the use of evidenced-based practices for children and youth with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).


National Resources:


Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD)

The Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) is a membership organization that supports and promotes a national network of university-based interdisciplinary programs. These programs serve and are located in every U.S. state and territory and are all part of universities or medical centers. They serve as a bridge between the university and the community, bringing together the resources of both to achieve meaningful change. Through its members, AUCD is a resource for local, state, national, and international agencies, organizations, and policy makers concerned about people living with developmental and other disabilities and their families.

AUCD Webinar Library


Webinars are a great way to gain information. They offer timely information from experts and have the flexibility of being viewed at your convenience without the expense of travel. AUCD's new Webinar Library puts all AUCD-hosted webinars at your fingertips – when you want them. In this library you'll find only webinars which have been hosted by AUCD, and a convenient search function makes it easy to find the specific webinar(s) of interest.


The State Public Health Autism Resource Center (SPHARC) is a comprehensive resource center for state Title V programs and others interested in improving systems for children, youth and families with autism spectrum disorders.