What is Autism?
Autism is a complex developmental disability that affects an individual in the areas of social interaction and communication. Autism is a spectrum disorder that affects each individual differently and to varying degrees of severity. As many as 1.5 million Americans -children and adults - are thought to have autism today. There is no known cause or cure but there are many interventions that are proven effective and more research now than ever before into autism. The NIH quotes the rate of autism to be 1 in 88 individuals.
How is autism diagnosed?
A pediatrician, neurologist, developmental pediatrician, psychologist or psychiatrist can diagnose autism. Families can ask their pediatrician to perform a First Signs evaluation or other developmental screenings or ask to be referred to a developmental pediatrician. Early screening and intervention are the keys to optimal outcomes for children with developmental delays. If you have concerns it is important that you make that call and get your child seen as soon as possible.
Where can I get help?
There are many support groups and advocates to help you along the way. Greater Philadelphia Autism Society has as listserv, and many support groups that are available to assist you in this journey.
How do I become a member of the Greater Philadelphia Autism Societyr?
You can become a member of the Greater Philadelphia Autism Society by entering the membership section of the website, download an application and submit it along with a membership fee. You will then begin to receive the benefits of local membership.
Can I register for National membership through the Greater Philadelphia Autism Society?
You can register for National Membership along with your local membership by entering the membership section of the website, download an application and submit it along with a membership fee. You will then begin to receive the benefits of membership to Greater Philadelphia Autism Society and your National membership will be processed as well. If you would elect to register your National membership directly, you may register on-line at www.autism-society.org.
How do I join the Greater Philadelphia Autism Society's Listserv?
You can join our local listserv, by clicking on the link at the bottom of each page labeled Yahoo Listserv. This will send a request to the listserv monitor requesting to join the group. Once approved, you will be able to experience the incredible network of individuals and information that flows amongst individuals with interest in Autism Spectrum Disorders.
What are the benefits of joining the Listserv?
Our local Yahoo Listserv is comprised of hundreds of individuals from the Greater Philadelphia Area with an interest in Autism Spectrum Disorders. As a member, you will be able to view pertinent information with regards to ASD in many areas, not limited to, education, governmental actions, research studies, medical findings, therapies, and organizations. You will also be able to provide or receive information to/from other sources. It is an outstanding networking tool.
How can I donate money to the Greater Philadelphia Autism Society?
Money can be donated in several fashions; through the United Way, tribute donations, general donations, on-line shopping. The details on each method is outlined in our website donation section.
What is the Puzzle Ribbon Campaign?
To highlight National Autism Awareness Month, which is in April, and spread Autism Awareness in your school, the Greater Philadelphia Autism Society will distribute puzzle ribbons to selected area schools in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties.

The puzzle pattern of the Autism Awareness Ribbon reflects the mystery and complexity of autism. The different colors and shapes represent the diversity of the people and families living with the disorder. The brightness of the ribbon signals hope-hope through research and in the increasing awareness of people like you. When you wear this ribbon it will show your support for individuals with autism and help raise autism awareness.

To enter your school to participate in the campaign, please check the events page in the months leading up to April.
How can I register to volunteer for assistance during functions?
You can register to be a volunteer at any of our functions by either completing the registration form for that particular event and placing a check mark in the box allocating your interest in volunteering, or you may send an e-mail for us to keep your name on file as an event volunteer. If you name is on file, we will contact you for assistance as needed.