Adults With ASD

Please direct all questions about adult services in the Niagara Region to our Adult ASD Support Coordinator, Vanessa Coens, at





Transition planning is a process.  The child, parent and people who provide supports help the young person create a vision for the future.  This toolkit helps families to create a step by step plan outlining the supports and goals needed to make a smooth transition from school to adult life.

Click here to download a free pdf version of the Transition to Adulthood Toolkit.

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housing logoThe Niagara Region published a 10 year action plan called A Home for All in 2013.   It documents what needs to be done so that everyone in Niagara

Region has an affordable, suitable and adequate place to live.  Although people with disabilities are identified as a significant sub population with particular housing challenges, there are very few actions in the plan that specifically addresses their needs.  We hope to bring attention to the housing crisis for adults with ASD in particular and provide a clear picture of the need in specific communities in Niagara region, areas of high demand, the type of housing and supports required today, in 5 years and 10 years down the road.  This report will form the basis for our advocacy and awareness efforts to bring government, social services agencies, the community and families affected by ASD together in the #HomeinNiagara campaign to achieve the vision of a home for all.   

Please complete the following questionnaire to help Autism Ontario identify the housing needs of young adults with ASD (18+ years and over), as well as the future housing needs of youth under 18.  Answer all the questions to the best of your ability and complete a separate survey for each individual with ASD so that we receive the most accurate results of your feedback. If you are unsure of any questions, please leave it blank.

The cumulative results of this survey will be used to advocate for future housing supports in the Niagara Region.  If you are interested in learning more or getting involved with the Chapter's Housing Committee, please contact our Adult Support Coordinator, Vanessa Coens, at 905-682-2776 ext. 203 or

Click here to complete the Niagara Region Housing Survey For Individuals With ASD.

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The Niagara Adult Day Program/Recreation and Leisure Guide is a resource that lists programs and activities that are available throughout the Niagara Region for adults diagnosed with ASD. The programs listed vary in cost, interest, and level of support provided. There is an additional section in the guide that lists general programs that are open to all within the Niagara Region, regardless of need/diagnosis. Also included is information regarding Developmental Services Ontario (DSO).

Please note, program availability and fees may change at any time and this guide will be updated periodically. If you have any questions or concerns, or are in need of support, please do not hesitate to contact Vanessa Coens, Adult Support Coordinator at or 905-682-2776, ext. 203.
The guide was last updated March, 2016. 

Click here to dowload the Recreation and Lesiure Guide.

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Autism Ontario - Niagara Chapter is currently working to address issues facing Adults on the autism spectrum. Through a grant from the Fowler Family Foundation, Autism Ontario - Niagara has begun to examine the issues, gaps in services and funding that are faced by families and adult individuals living with an ASD diagnosis.

Following a community consultation day that brought together over 40 community partners, parents and self-advocates, Autism Ontario - Niagara Chapter has taken the lead in establishing working committees to examine and address the core themes that arose from that day.

Committees include:

  • Housing
  • Transition Planning
  • Community Awareness & Education
  • Day Programming/Rec & Leisure

If you're interested in being on an AWG committee, please contact

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  • Special Needs Dances: Casa Dante - Special Olympics Ontario hosts a number of social dances on Friday nights.  Please click here to view more details.



  • KINnections Life Centre provides unique and creative day, evening and weekend programming for adults 18+ with intellectual, developmental disabilities and acquired brain injuries. Programs include recreation and leisure, life skills and education, as well as respite starting in 2015. Based in Dunnville (Haldimand) at 121 Alder Street W., KINnections offers transportation as an option to the following communities: Welland, Port Colborne, Fonthill, Cayuga, Dunnville, and more! Please click here to learn more. If you have questions call KINnections at 289-518-0546 or email Gary at

  • Neighbourhood Connections -a daytime program offered by NTEC for adults with developmental disabilities. The program supports people to connect with others in their community while learning valuable life skills. This will help participants to become as independent as possible while having fun with others who have like interests and hobbies. Click here for additional information.
  • Discovery ETC-  a workshop offered by Niagara Training and Employment Agency Inc (NTEC). The program offers hands-on programming to foster a positive sense of self and personal growth while building effective communication skills within a group setting. This program DOES NOT require a referral from DSO. Please click here for additional details.
  • Special Olympics - With the biggest diversity of sports in the Niagara Region, Welland Special Olympics will most definitely have a sport for you!  Click here for more information.

  • Busing with Mel - If your goal is to take the bus, Busing with Mel will train you how!  Click here for more information.



  •       Stay tuned for upcoming workshops...



  • Employment Help Centre: Located in Beamsville, Grimsby and Smithville, Employment Help Centre offers free services to anyone who is conducting a job search. They supply information and resources required for a successful job search including access to a dedicated Resource Advisor with no appointment necessary. Employment Help Centre is hosting a number of different employment workshops and information sessions throughout the month. Please click here for dates, location, registration information, and resources that are offered.
  • Employment Solutions in Welland is hosting a number of different employment workshops and information sessions this month. Click here for dates, session description, and registration information.
  • Business Education Council (BEC) - is hosting a number of workshops, information sessions, certificate training opportunities and provide job search fundamentals.  Please click here to see events.

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Click here for Advocacy: Response to the Select Committee's Interim Report. The Ontario Select Committee on Developmental Services released it's Interim Report on March 5, 2014.

Click here for Atlas on Primary Care of Adults with Developmental Disabilities in Ontario, November 2013.

Click here for Ending the Wait: An Action Agenda to Address the Housing Crisis Confronting Ontario Adults with Developmental Disabilities, September 2013.

Click here for the Adults Count Survey Results titled Diversity in Ontario's Youth and Adults with ASDs, the Executive Summary and the Powerpoint Presentation by Kevin Stoddart, PhD, RSW in connection with Autism Ontario and the Redpath Centre, January 2013.

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