Autistic Check-In – Helping Each Other Handle the Pandemic – May 22nd 2020
Save the date! Friday May 22nd at 4:30pm EDT, we will be hosting an Autistic Check-In with a panel of autistic self-advocates from across the country.
Autistics helping Autistics. This is a panel by Autistics, for autistics, so if you are an autistic youth or adult, this panel is for you!
We will have the opportunity to share what we are doing to cope, some challenges we have faced, and what we are doing to overcome the stresses that have happened since the coronavirus upended our lives.
We have 7 panelists from across Canada who will be sharing their experiences and answering questions.
- Matthew Dever
- Elsbeth Dodman
- Trudy Goold
- Jackie McMillan
- Jordyn Pallett
- William Tziavaras
- Corey Walker
More Bios to be added soon for our other panelists.
Elsbeth Dodman lives in London Ontario with her family and 2 cats. She graduated from Fanshawe’s Autism Behavioural Sciences course and has an honours degree with UTM and Sheridan College for Fine Arts and Anthropology. Elsbeth was diagnosed Autistic at 14 and has spent 18 years as an Autism advocate giving presentations and working on committees to help raise awareness and acceptance of Autistic people. Elsbeth currently sits on the board for the Ontario Autism Coalition, Bridging the Gap, the Ontario Children’s Advocacy Coalition and her local riding committee. Elsbeth works part time and loves to draw.
Trudy Goold grew up in Toronto (ON) and graduated high school the year Asperger’s was put into the DSM-IV. She moved to St. John’s (NL) in 2011 at her parents’ suggestion, and was finally given an official diagnosis of Asperger’s in 2012 (the year before the DSM-5 came out).
Since 2013, she has maintained an autism blog (at https://tagaught.net/) which talks about some of the struggles and joys of being an autistic adult, to pay forward the assistance she acquired through reading the blogs of other autistic adults.
She dove into autism advocacy with the advent of the Canadian Autism Partnership Project, joining the Advisory Group, and hasn’t stopped since, making appearances at CASDA Leadership Summits (2017, 2018, 2019), and INSAR Conference 2019. She was elected to the board of the Autism Society of Newfoundland and Labrador as the autistic advocate in 2017, and maintains that position at present.
Jordyn Pallett is an almost 17 year old non-speaking autistic. Communicating caringly by pointing to letters on an alphabet board since he was 13, Jordyn shares his experiences through is blog (jordynsrockyjourney.wordpress.com), speaking engagements, and being an open and authentic book for people to access. Love, Peace, and Joy on this planet is his mission. Good homeschool access to educational materials guides his way forward. He is excited to participate on this panel and hopefully make a difference.
William Tziavaras is a grade 6 student in the Toronto District School Board. He enjoys being the only nonspeaking autistic AAC user in his regular classroom of neurotypical kids and getting the education he always dreamed of after many years in a segregated intensive support classroom. William has presented on inclusive classrooms, and is often asked to contribute his unique perspective as a consultant on matters such as inclusive education and public spaces, effective implementation of AAC and, very regularly, common misconceptions about nonspeaking autistics.
Corey Walker is an autistic self-advocate from Prince George, BC. He was diagnosed with Asperger’s in 2001, while in his early 20’s, and since then he has made it his life’s mission to empower autistics to live the best life possible, and to educate others about what makes autistics such wonderful, unique people with proper supports. Corey currently holds down two jobs; he is the Northern Regional Coordinator for AutismBC and he is the Project Lead for Sinneave Family Foundation on an exciting project researching evidence-based best practices for employing autistic adults.
Matthew Jason Dever is an autistic adult of 5 children with three on the autism spectrum, living in rural Eastern Ontario. He advocates for inclusion and acceptance of autistic individuals and for autistic people to have their own voice. Matthew is a former member of the Ontario Autism Program Advisory Panel, and current member of the Ontario Autism Program Implementation Working Group. He is Director of Outreach with Autism Advocacy Ontario, founder of Autistic Bridge, a self-advocacy group, a Director with HAACO Ontario, and a leader in the National Disability Strategy movement to build a nation-wide coalition of disability organizations to advocate for meeting all needs of all disabilities at all ages. In his spare time, he is a web and graphic designer.
This panel was recorded, and will be made available shortly.