There are many times when a parent of a child on the Autism spectrum does not know where to turn to get answers for their day-to-day questions. Wouldn’t it be great if they had other parents to consult who have gone through similar circumstances with their child so that they could ask questions and get advice? Now that type of resource is available as My Autism Team (http:\www.MyAutismTeam.com).
My Autism Team is a new website whose tagline is that “Life on the Spectrum is better with the right team”. One of the main purposes of the My Autism Team is to provide access to a list of service providers for parents to use to provide care for their child. The website also functions like other social media sites and provides a way for parents to communicate with one another to ask or answer questions, leave comments or provide uplifting support.
New users begin by creating a profile on the site like they would other social media sites, or their profile can be integrated from Facebook. The profile for My Autism Team also allows them to put in information about their children and their story. Parents can create a team of other parents or professionals based on their needs. This works like having friends on the other social media sites and creates a community for the user.
The website is divided into four sections to make it easy for the user’s to find what they need: Activities; Find Parents; Find Providers; and Q+A. The Activities section provides an area where parents can post a brief message talking about their activities for the day, flagging the day as good, bad or so-so. This status update can then be shared to Facebook if they choose. Other parents are able to comment, like, or leave the parent a virtual hug to encourage them.
The Find Parents section allows the user to find other parents to add to their team. They can search by name or location, as well as the child’s age and diagnosis. This functionality helps them locate other users who are in a similar situation with their child.
The Find Providers section allows users to search for a variety of service providers for their child. According to the website, there are over 30,000 providers in their database. This section is very useful for parents because the providers list includes a large variety of services like medical and dental services, therapists, schools, non-profit organizations and many other varieties of services. Users can leave a review for the provider so that other users know the quality of service that is provided. Users have the option of also adding providers. This information is extremely helpful for parents when trying to locate specialized services or activities for their child on the spectrum.
The Q+A section provides an area where parents can ask questions about their child and have other parents with a similar situation answer. These questions might be as simple as “What airline is the best to fly?” to “My child is behaving like this…what should I do?” This section is invaluable for parents looking for answers on their day-to-day situations.
Overall, this new website is a great resource for parents with a child on the Autism Spectrum. Parents can interact with other parents, get answers to the questions, and find services for their child. Like any social media site, it gets better with interaction. Parents who find it useful should spread the word to other parents that could benefit from everything this tremendous website has to offer!