Nickel Belt

Audrey - 8 years old

Hello, My name is Devon and our beautiful daughter Audrey is 8 years old. Audrey was diagnosed, officially with Autism when she was 7, though our journey started long before. I knew from a very young age that Audrey was not like other babies, she screamed, all day, every day. No one but myself could touch her and I could not put her down. We went through many tests and were told, that's just her personality. I felt differently but with doctors telling me it was nothing, we moved on. Audrey remained in this state till she was ...

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Elijah (14) and Lilly-Anna (5)

We’re the Bonin/MacDonald family from Greater Sudbury. We have two children; Elijah, 14 with Asperger’s and ADHD; Lilly-Anna 5, was diagnosed as a level 3 on the Autism Spectrum and global development delay. Our home is busy with children and tired parents. Elijah is an energic, smart and social individual, who loves to play boards and talk about computer games to anyone who is willing to listen. He was diagnosed at 5 after being asked not to return to daycare and at two different private schools because they didn’t have the resources to handle his meltdowns. Elementary school was a challenge ...

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Gabriel - 4 years old

Ny name is Diana Bedard and I have 3 children; a girl Emma, and twin boys, Gabriel and Xavier. When my boys were only 8 weeks old I fled an abusive relationship with their dad and started over. Soon my son Xavier became very ill with a rare condition called chronic neutrapenia, it left him a 'bubble boy' for his first few years therefore isolating the rest of us as well. Being a single mom with a sick baby there is only one option I had left, Ontario Works, as neutrapenia is not permanent I did not qualify for any ...

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Kathryn - 5 years old

Our journey began in September of 2015.  Kathryn was just over 1 ½ when we began to notice that she was not achieving the developmental milestones for her age.  As parents, we knew something was just not right – the quest began, countless hours spent trying to research what could be preventing, our otherwise healthy child from developing as we knew she should.  Previously in December of 2014 Kathryn could wave “goodbye”, mimic our actions and say “Mama” and “Dada” - by the fall of 2015 - Kathryn was no longer speaking, was no longer engaged and would no longer ...

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Colton - 4 years old

This is our amazing, beautiful and entertaining son Colton. Although around 18mth of age he could do puzzles, knew his colours, sort objects into appropriate categoreis and he could count to 10 his pediatrician noticed some "red flags" for Autism (little to no eye contact, no engagement or joint attention with others and a severe speech delay) and about a year later he received his official diagnosis. Colton will be 5 years old in April and is currently on the OAP waitlist. He has missed the very crucial early years of intensive behavioural therapy. We have & will continue to ...

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Gavin - 5 years old

With the announcement of the changes to the Ontario autism program I would like to take a minute to explain the effect that this will have on our family, school, community and most importantly our son Gavin. Our son Gavin is turning six years old. Gavin has been diagnosed with severe autism, global developmental delays and is mostly nonverbal. He is a bright, happy and intelligent boy who is always eager to impress. He has an amazing aptitude for patterns, numbers and the alphabet, in more languages than one. We often say, he’s by far smarter than we’ll ...

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Jet - 4 years old

Hi everyone! This is Jet. He’s a tenacious, full of life, mischievous, and loveable 4 year old. Jet came into this world at full force, and hasn’t stopped since. The first time we noticed that there was something of concern was when Jet was 15-18 months old. He was learning words, and trying to communicate with us, until one morning it sort of all vanished. At a regular check up with our family Doctor at 2, our concerns were brought forward and before the inevitable ASD testing was done we were sent to an Ear Nose and Throat doctor to ...

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Valerie - 3 years old

My Name is Chantal Chartrand and I am a special needs parent to my two amazing little girls Émilie and Valèrie. Émilie is my 9 year old ball of energy. She was diagnosed with ADHD and Oppositionaal Defiant Disorder (ODD) in Nov 2015. We’ve had our struggles with Émilie and the school system. Schools definitely need more supports for mental health. My Valérie is 3 years old and she was diagnosed with severe Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) Level 3 and Global Development Delay (GDD) in June 2018 when she was 2.5 years old. Val is also considers pre-verbal since she ...

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Dylan/Killian/Keallach

Hi and thanks for taking the time to read our story. We are a blended family, between my husband and I, we have 3 boys, with another on the way. Our oldest will be 7 in April, he lives with his mom full time and comes to us every other weekend. Our middle boy turned 5 in Dec and our baby is gonna be 4 in Sept. With the new baby due at the end of July. All 3 boys have been diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) now. Our oldest who is considered moderate on the spectrum, was the ...

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Bryston Proulx - 3 years old

Hello my name is Paige Proulx , I have two boys, Nashton and Bryston. I am a single mother. Nashton is four years old and has ADHD, my three year old son, Bryston, is among the 23,000 children on the OAP wait list. Bryston was placed on that waitlist in September 2018. Never having dealt in any way or any knowledge at all, about autism, it's been a learning process for myself and all my family. My son Bryston is non-verbal, he has sensory issues, he only eats pablum and finger foods, only specific ones. He sees a Dietitian, Pediatrician, ...

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Teo L - 4 years old

Meet Teo! Up until 28 months of age, our son Teo met all of his developmental milestones. Then we began noticing deterioration in many of his communication and social skills. Our pediatrician also noted these changes in our son and placed him on a waitlist to be tested for Autism Spectrum Disorder. After a considerable period of inaction, and the looming uncertainty and worry, we sought private diagnosis. This was the first of a series of events that made clear to us that diagnosis, therapy, as well as education and training services for our son were frustratingly uncertain. Our son was ...

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