In the past year and a half, we have been forced to rethink what is important, what isn’t, and to reconsider how we typically do things.
How have we adapted to these changes and uncertainty? How do we plan to adapt as changes come? Recognizing the strength that is within each of us and our communities, what are the ways that we can take care of ourselves and support one another?
While the Annual Philadelphia Autism Project Conference has always been an exciting space and time for all of us to convene, discuss, and share challenges and ideas, we have certainly taken a pause this year to reflect. Our communities have been impacted by COVID-19 and have experienced local and international social issues including systemic injustice and racial violence. When we speak about resilience, we are not talking about picking yourself up and getting on with your day. When we speak of resilience, we are speaking about the small, and not so small ways, that you have taken care of yourself, your family, or others. We are talking about the strength, patience, flexibility, and vulnerability you have shown as we have all faced uncertainty. We are talking about the grains of truth and lessons that you have learned, in coming through these challenging times. We invite you to tell us – what does resilience mean to you?
In planning this conference, we have kept in mind the varied needs reported by community members and have strived to include relevant topics throughout each session. We hope that you will leave this conference with helpful information and resources to support yourself and others, and connect with the broader Philadelphia Autism community.