Celebrate mothers of special-needs children

May is the month to appreciate our mothers and grandmothers. We make a special effort to show our love and gratitude this time of year through our words and actions (and, for good measure, a beautiful bouquet doesn’t hurt!).

But a more and more homes include family members who have autism spectrum disorder. Many of these individuals may rarely convey to their mothers just how much adoration and love exists within their special bond, and those moms can use some special recognition.

Mothers of children with special needs work tirelessly day in and day out for their children.

Their work includes motherly duties of love, providing food, shelter, clothing, tenderness, and teaching.

But standing atop of that mountain is a pressure-cooker filled with speech and language goals, fine- and gross-motor coordination activities, functional life skills, opportunities for generalization, natural environment teaching moments, sensitivity and awareness for siblings and peers, team meetings, workshops, parent-training visits, data collection and analysis for behavioral outbursts, and so much more.

It is a world that involves these mothers’ front doors opening and closing continuously to allow for professionals to enter and exit. Between those times it is the mothers who hold everything together.

It is a motherhood that requires patience; patience that includes waiting an entire summer while an 8-year-old child learns to imitate waving.

It is a motherhood that requires grace; grace that includes calmly handling a very loud 10-year-old autistic child in the supermarket while every other adult in the surrounding area glares. It is a motherhood that requires fortitude — courage and advocacy mixed together in a cake bowl — that has to be at an all-time high level from the time of diagnosis throughout adulthood.

It is a motherhood that requires connectedness; connectedness means constant networking, attendance at workshops, fund-raisers, classes, and more.

It is a motherhood that requires a realistic view of accomplishment; accomplishment can easily mean her child learning how to tie his shoes at the age of 19 after working on this skill for more than 300 hours. It is a motherhood that requires balance; balance between caring for all members of her family, herself, and a person with special needs who naturally requires just that much more.

We should all remember to honor our mothers each day, and especially on Mother’s Day.

This May, if you know a mother or grandmother who has the personal privilege of having a family member with autism spectrum disorder, or individualized personality, acknowledge her. Take the time to wish her a happy Mother’s Day.

These are words she may have yet to hear from that special person in her life.

Relevant Directory Listings

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Challenge Camp

<p>Challenge Camp is an ACA accredited day camp focused on STEM and Arts enrichment for creative children ages 4-15 at a new location, Iona University. The Challenge Camp advantage is that parents and campers customize a program based on the child’s interests, and students follow their courses for an entire session.</p> <p>Challenge offers over 100 STEM and Arts project based electives to engage and inspire campers. Courses range from 3D Printing, App Development, Art, Chess, Coding, Cooking, Drones, Dungeons & Dragons, Escape Room, E-Sports, Filmmaking, Game Design, Lego, Magic, Makerspace, Minecraft, Photography, Podcasting, Robotics, Rocketry, Theater, VR and more! The Discover, Imagine & Create program is for students entering Kindergarten in fall. Active sports options including Basketball, Dance, Fencing, Ninja Warrior, Pickleball, Soccer, Ultimate Frisbee and an on-site Swim Program allow campers to challenge their minds and bodies. A Hot lunch and snack are included. Transportation and early drop-off/extended day options are available.</p> <p>The program is unique as there are multiple disciplinary options your child can experience throughout the day from STEM, Art, Theater, Music, Science, Technology, Sports and Swimming. To learn more about this innovative enrichment program visit: <a href="http://www.challengecamps.com/" target="_blank" rel="noopener" data-saferedirecturl="https://www.google.com/url?q=http://www.challengecamps.com&source=gmail&ust=1704993244563000&usg=AOvVaw3LRLLIWiKoUBlHE35POFyK">http://www.<wbr />challengecamps.com</a></p>

SKATEYOGI

<p><span style="caret-color: #500050; color: #500050; font-family: arial, helvetica, sans-serif; font-size: 12pt; background-color: #ffffff;">Discover the joy of skateboarding! Offered at both their original Prospect Lefferts Gardens location and their brand-new space on the Williamsburg Waterfront (N 9th St @ Kent), SKATEYOGI Summer Camp welcomes anyone ages 7-13 from absolute beginners to experienced skaters in a fun, creative environment. Campers are exposed to both outdoor skating on daily trips to nearby parks and indoor ramp practice. Their low student-to-teacher ratio ensures plenty of personal attention. They also offer a shorter afternoon mini-camp at both of these locations for younger skaters ages 5-7. Rental gear is included for camps held on-site at SKATEYOGI. For more experienced skaters ages 9-15, their Urban Shredders program offers daily adventures at skateparks and skate spots around Downtown Brooklyn. </span></p>

Steve & Kate's Camp

<p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><strong><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">When you trust kids, they trust themselves.</span></strong><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> </span><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Since 1980, Steve & Kate’s has put kids in charge of their own learning experience. As they try, fail, and learn on their own, they learn to trust their own judgment, and tackle the challenges of an ever changing world with creativity and confidence.</span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> </span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Campers choose from a variety of activities in real-time including, sewing, stop-motion animation, music, coding, sports & rec, makers crafts, baking, & more. They'll decide what they want to do, and for how long. </span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> </span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">This summer families can buy as many days as they’d like, and use them at any time. No weekly reservations required–just show up! Or, if you need more care, purchase a Summer Pass, which covers the whole season. If for any reason your plans change, they’ll automatically refund any unused Passes in full at summer’s end. </span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> </span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Ages: 4–12 | Lunch, snacks, and all hours (8am–6pm) included. </span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;"> </span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 12pt; font-family: Arial; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-variant-east-asian: normal; font-variant-position: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">2024 Locations:</span><span id="docs-internal-guid-9dc18612-7fff-b467-ff33-53b9bef5d5bf"></span></p> <h2 dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 18pt; margin-bottom: 6pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Brooklyn–Cobble Hill</span></h2> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Brooklyn Heights Montessori School, 185 Court Street, Brooklyn, NY</span></p> <h2 dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 18pt; margin-bottom: 6pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Brooklyn–Crown Heights</span></h2> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">German School Brooklyn, 760 Sterling Place, Brooklyn, NY</span></p> <h2 dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 18pt; margin-bottom: 6pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Manhattan–Upper West Side</span></h2> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Trevor Day School - Lower School, 1 W 88th St., New York, NY</span></p> <h2 dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 18pt; margin-bottom: 6pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Manhattan–Upper East Side</span></h2> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Trevor Day School - Upper School, 312 E 95th St., New York, NY</span></p> <h2 dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 18pt; margin-bottom: 6pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Manhattan–West Village</span></h2> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Academy of St. Joseph - 111 Washington Place, New York, NY</span></p> <h2 dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 18pt; margin-bottom: 6pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: bold; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Manhattan–Lower Manhattan</span></h2> <p style="letter-spacing: 0px; caret-color: #222222; color: #222222; border: 0px solid; box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; font-family: Assistant, sans-serif; line-height: 30px;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-1cd32a16-7fff-4052-9765-1e2d453d1251"></span></p> <p dir="ltr" style="line-height: 1.38; margin-top: 0pt; margin-bottom: 0pt;"><span style="font-size: 10pt; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; color: #000000; background-color: transparent; font-weight: 400; font-style: normal; font-variant: normal; text-decoration: none; vertical-align: baseline; white-space: pre-wrap;">Bright Horizons @ 90 Washington on West, 52 West St., New York, NY</span></p>