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COVID-19 - Autism Nova Scotia Programs and Services Update

COVID-19 NEWS UPDATE FROM AUTISM NOVA SCOTIA: Latest Update as of November 25th, 2020
 

The health and safety of our program participants, visitors, and community partners is the main priority of Autism Nova Scotia. We are currently closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation and following the government’s recommendations to ensure we are safeguarding the health and wellness of our community.

Autism Nova Scotia staff are in the office between 8:30am - 4:30pm Monday to Friday:​
Walk-ins for general enquiries at our Halifax & Bedford Offices will continue to stay open. However, all individuals* entering the building must wear a mask, sanitize their hands, sign our contacts sheet and will be asked to observe the floor markings to maintain social distance.

If you are experiencing a crisis or need assistance, please call 902-446-4995. 

*If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID19, please do not visit our offices/centres and please call 811 to speak with a health expert.


Given that social distancing is being advised wherever possible to help contain the spread of the coronavirus, some of our programs and services will remain as virtual operations or postponed until further notice. 

Please check this page for the most current update on program or service delivery. You may also call our reception desk at 902-446-4995 or email us at info@autismns.ca.

Due to the expected heavy traffic, we appreciate your patience and co-operation as we strive to respond as promptly as possible.
 


COVID-19 Outbreak and Autism Related Resources: 

Autism Nova Scotia has created different resources and online guides for funding applications, families, students and more. 
​Please click here to visit our resources page. 




OFFICE NOTICE

Autism Nova Scotia staff are all back in the office as of Tuesday September 8th. Our office hours are 8:30-4:30 Monday to Friday.

We ask all visitors* entering the building to wear a mask, sanitize their hands, sign our contacts sheet and will be asked to observe the floor markings to maintain social distance.​

We recommend that you make an appointment or call ahead before coming to the office (902-446-4995). Masks are mandatory. 

If you are experiencing a crisis or need assistance please call 902-446-4995. 

*If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID19, please do not visit our offices/centres and please call 811 to speak with a health expert.

 


PROGRAMS & SERVICES UPDATE (CENTRAL OFFICE)

To ensure we are following the recommendations of the Provincial Department of Public Health, Autism Nova Scotia will be supporting social distancing practices through the following changes to support, programs and services:

Social & Community Inclusion Programming
​(in alphabetical order)

Autistics Aloud 

  • Will continue online virtually
Autism Arts 
  • Autism Arts Fall 2020 term has ended following Public Health guidelines and the closure of Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. We will reassess whether we can proceed in Winter 2021.
Bridges To Success
  • Bridges To Success will transition to online programming. Please contact Thomas Reynolds at treynolds@autismns.ca for more information.
D&D Club 
  • Will continue online virtually

HRSA Halifax 

  • Healthy Relationships, Sexuality and Autism (HRSA) will continue its existing virtual online platform​. Please contact Holly MacLellan at hmaclellan@autismns.ca for more information.

Netflix Watch Party (Virtual)

  • This online social program runs every other Friday. Please contact Caitlyn Temple at ctemple@autismns.ca for more information.
Social Groups
  • In-Person Social Group sessions are now cancelled for the remainder of Fall 2020. We will reassess in 2021.
  • Members of Social Group are encouraged to join Virtual Club. This is a new online social initiative and will also be offered to anyone across the province on the Autism Spectrum that would like to join in. Please contact Caitlyn Temple at ctemple@autismns.ca for more information.
Supported Social Group 
  • Remaining Fall 2020 in-person sessions are all cancelled. We will reassess in 2021.
  • Supported Social Group will transition to online programming on Thursdays (twice a month). Please contact Thomas Reynolds at treynolds@autismns.ca for more information.
Virtual Club
  • Meets every Monday and Wednesday evening virtually. Please contact Caitlyn Temple at ctemple@autismns.ca for more information.
WA/AP (Women’s Group) 
  • Will continue its virtual online meetings. Please contact Holly MacLellan at hmaclellan@autismns.ca for more information. 

 



Family Support & Respite Services

Family Support
  • Our Family Support is available online/phone. We also offer limited in-person meetings using preventative safety measures post Covid-19. Please contact jcormier@autismns.ca

Respite Services
  • Respite Services will continue with additional screening and preventive measures. Our Coordinator is available for support through phone and online. Please contact abrewer@autismns.ca with any questions you may have.
     


​Employment Supports and Pre-Employment Programs:
​(in alphabetical order)

Career Quest 

  • Career Quest is moving to a virtual online platform in Halifax. This online delivery platform is also being explored in rural regions of the province. Please contact Hannah Teeple at hteeple@autimsns.ca for more information. If you cannot participate in the online program, please connect with Hannah.

Employment Coaching 

  • On and off the job support is available for individuals. Please contact Hannah Teeple at hteeple@autimsns.ca for more information. 
  • Continued support available to clients and agencies to support with any transition needs. 

Employment Support Group

  • Employment Support Group is being offered virtually and the next cohort begins in January 2021. Contact cmargeson@autismns.ca for more information.

Employment Works Rural 

  • Please contact Jessica McKee-Mitchell at jmckeemitchell@autismns.ca for more information regarding EmploymentWorks Rural sites (Annapolis Valley, Truro & Pictou County). 

​LaunchPad 

  • LaunchPad Halifax has moved to a virtual online platform for classroom sessions and job sampling.If interested, please contact Hannah Teeple at hteeple@autimsns.ca for more information.
  • AutismWorks Launch Pad Sydney is a new preemployment program for the Sydney NS location. Please contact Jessica at jmckeemitchell@autismns.ca for more information

 RWA 

  • Employment engagement available through RWA staff by phone and email

  • Autism Outreach Coordinators in NS and NB will move to virtual intakes and check-ins as needed 
TRAACE
  • TRAACE is currently being piloted in the school system.

QuickStart 

QuickStart 

  • The program is available online or in-person at family’s or in the Bedford office with safety measures in place. Location is based on preference, availability and public health recommendations.
  • Ongoing referrals and intakes will take place through phone calls and virtual intake meetings.

 



Post-Secondary Support 

PASS 

  • All support will continue through virtual online platforms
     


Social Enterprise  

Pearl 



​CHAPTERS & OUTREACH ACROSS THE PROVINCE
Chapter locations & offices are currently open and each location are offering a variety of in-person and/or online programs and services.

Following Public Health’s announcement of new restrictions (November 24, 2020) in response to COVID-19, we ask that all visitors** who have travelled or are travelling to the HRM/Hants County Area to avoid visiting our chapter locations in-person at this time until restrictions are lifted. We kindly suggest that you connect with us via telephone or email for questions/support instead.

**This also applies to any members of a visitor's household who may have travelled or are travelling to HRM. If someone within your bubble/household has visited HRM, please avoid coming into our centre for the next two weeks.

Please connect with your local chapter coordinator via email provided below:

​Annapolis Valley: annapolisvalley@autismns.ca | AV_RC@autismns.ca
Cape Breton: cbregion@autismns.ca


For more information regarding the development of COVID-19, please visit the province's website: www.novascotia.ca/coronavirus