Community Groups

  • Autism BC offers informal coffee meet ups as well as three types of Community Groups that meet monthly to better serve our members; Community Groups (for parents, grandparents and professionals), Adult groups (for spectrum adults) and Sibling Groups.

    To connect with Community Groups in your region click here (and scroll down to the bottom of the page).

    Community Groups

    Led by parent facilitators, Autism BC Community Groups provide valuable support to families affected by autism by connecting parents with relevant ASD information and resources, and offering a safe and encouraging environment to share experiences. Monthly meetings help bring families together in their efforts to navigate the challenges presented by an autism diagnosis and inform them through knowledgeable speakers, video presentations, educational materials on scientifically proven treatment/therapies and other services that benefit children, teens or adults on the autism spectrum. Autism BC currently facilitates Community Groups in all regions of the Province including the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, Northern BC and the Interior.

    Who can attend?

    Autism BC members, including parents, family members, and professionals.

    How do we choose the topic and speaker?

    Topics for meetings are determined by the Autism BC volunteer facilitators who are familiar with the information needs in their communities. Appropriate speakers are then engaged to present on the chosen topic.

    Previous topics include:

    • Child Tax Benefits
    • Autism and Sexuality
    • Life After High School
    • Legal Documents to Protect Your Child’s Future
    • Tax Issues and RDSP’s
    • Employment Training and Support Services

    Previous speakers include:

    • Professionals: Social Workers, Behaviour Consultants, Teachers, Accountants, Lawyers and Psychologists
    • Parents

    To make a special topic request, please contact a facilitator in your area.

    Is there a cost?

    No. Meetings are FREE!

    Sibling Groups

    These groups are for siblings of individuals with autism and related disabilities.  Facilitated by parents, these groups give siblings a chance to connect with other siblings while participating in fun activities.

    What is the age range?

    Ages range depending on the group. Our Kelowna Siblings Group ranges in age from 7 to 13.

    If you are looking to facilitate your own group, you can decide on the age parameters based on need and interest..

    What do they do?

    Every month is different.  Activities can be as simply as playing board games, to outings like bowling, hiking and cycling.

    Who chooses the activities?

    The facilitator(s) and the siblings work together to decide what activity they would like to do each month.

    Do they talk about sibling issues related to autism?

    Sometimes. However, much of the time the siblings just enjoy something that is strictly for them, as often the attention is on their spectrum sibling.

    Is there a cost?

    We try to ensure that the cost is minimal for families, and as such most activities will be free. However, if the group decides to partake in an activity that is more expensive, family may have to contribute a nominal amount.

    Adult Groups

    These groups are for youth and adults on the autism spectrum. Facilitated by a person with autism, the Adult Groups give individuals a chance to connect with others. The group will often also participate in social activities.

    What do they do?

    Every month is different; some months the group meet for conversation and support, and other months they participate in fun and social activities, such as bowling.

    Who chooses the activities?

    The group works together to decide what activities interest them.

    Is there a cost?

    We try to ensure that the cost is minimal for individuals, and as such most activities will be free. However, if the group decides to partake in an activity that is more expensive, individuals may have to contribute a nominal amount.

    Coffee Meetups

    These informal meetings help caregivers who have a family member with autism, connect with other caregivers in their community. They meet regularly, typically for an hour, however sometimes caregivers want to stay a bit longer to connect and that is fine too!

    Is there a cost?

    Just the cost of your own coffee.

    Don’t be shy. Reach out and contact the nearest facilitator on the list below. We’d be happy to hear from you.

    To view upcoming meetings in your community please check out the event listing or contact your Community Group Facilitator.

    How do I start a Community Group in my community?

    We’re always looking for people who are interested in serving families in additional communities. Let us know if you’d like to volunteer to become a Community Group Facilitator in your area (No experience required!).

    Contact us at: info@autismbc.ca or 1-888-437-0880.