When a family receives a diagnosis of Autism in their family bewilderment is often one of the first emotions that they experience. You need to coordinate therapy, special education, Individualized Education Plans (IEPs) and a myriad of resources to support your child and your family. When you are a military family who has an autism diagnoses you also face additional challenges. Your family may not be familiar with the recourses in your community, may have to reestablish care frequently with new care providers and have a school that is reluctant to meet the short term needs of a family that is moving on soon. In the spring of 2015 Erin Anhalt’s two sons were diagnosed with Autism and she was faced with navigating the unique world of military autism without a roadmap. She reached out to a national military autism support group, but found there wasn’t a local branch, so she started her own branch of the American Military Autism Support Group (AMFAS) in Patuxent River Maryland.
From the beginning the Pax River AMFAS group has been seeking to connect families with autism with each other as well as provide a roadmap of resources and support to these people. The group has been steadily growing into a community that cares for one another and helps people navigate the local system to best care for their families. Our goals include setting up community meet ups and eventually an inclusive sports team.
If you are interested in becoming a part of our community or helping us on our journey please email Erin Anhalt at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.