One in 68 Children has Autism

QSAC's blog – 2011 – May » 2011 » May

Special Autism-Friendly Performance: Lion King

May 11, 2011 9:11 pm Published by
Sunday, October 2, 2011 @ 1pm
Minskoff Theatre, 200 West 45th Street, New York, NY 10036

Theatre Development Fund (TDF), the nation’s largest not-for-profit service organization for the performing arts, is proud to announce our new Autism Theatre Initiative, making theatre accessible to children and adults on the autism spectrum, and their families. The first ever autism-friendly performance of a Broadway show will be Disney’s landmark musical THE LION KING on Sunday, October 2, 2011 at 1pm.

Now in its 14th year, over 55 million people worldwide have come to discover the wonder, the majesty, and the truly one-of-a-kind experience that is THE LION KING. For this special performance, accommodations will be made, including a supportive audience environment, designated quiet areas, adjustments to lights and sound,
and online resource materials.

Tickets are being offered through TDF at affordable prices:

Orchestra (all seats) — $79
Front Mezzanine (Rows A-G) & Box Seats — $67.50
Mid Mezzanine (Rows H-J) — $57.50
Rear Mezzanine (Rows K-L) — $38.00

Limit 6 tickets per order.

For additional performance modifications and more information, click below:

Click Here to Order Tickets Hyperlink

QSAC is a Top Rated Nonprofit on GreatNonprofits

May 11, 2011 4:24 pm Published by
Supporters around the country have spoken up about great nonprofits serving children and families! In the 2011 Children & Families Campaign more than 2,600 reviews were posted about 407 organizations enriching their communities through these essential services.
125 nonprofits qualified as Top-Rated Children & Families Nonprofits and QSAC made the list!
“We are excited to have learned about the many wonderful nonprofit organizations that are helping to support and empower children and families in our communities,” said Perla Ni, CEO of GreatNonprofits. “Especially at such a crucial time, we hope our campaign helps bring deserved attention to their efforts. These organizations make a remarkable contribution to all of our lives.”
You can see the reviews on QSAC’s GreatNonprofits profile at
Among the nonprofits making the top-rated list is The National Military Family Association, a nonprofit that helps to advocate for and educate the public on the evolving needs of military families:
“As a military Family member, I am proud to volunteer my time and energy to the National Military Family Association. Their hard work and tireless efforts are a reflection of the people they work so hard to support.”

Autism Prevalence Worldwide

May 10, 2011 6:56 pm Published by

According to researchers from George Washington University and Yale University, autism may be more common worldwide that previously thought. A large study on autism prevalence has found that the rate of children with autism in a portion of a South Korean city was more than double previous national estimates in other countries, leading researchers to call for similar reviews in the United States and abroad to better gauge the disorder’s true extent.

The study, published Monday, found that 2.6 percent of the region’s children were diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, more than double the 0.7 to 1 percent now regularly found in other countries, including the United States.

Candice Burns Hoffman, a spokeswoman for the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said the agency was considering a total population survey in light of the study. The CDC estimates the U.S. rate by using medical and special education records.

The Study “Prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorder in a Total Population Sample” published May 9th, 2011 in the American Journal of Psychiatry, reports autism among approximately 55,000 children ages 7 to 12 years in a South Korean community. “While the study does not suggest that Korean children have more autism than other populations or that a more accurate rate for the US is closer to 2.64 percent, it does suggest that autism may be more common than previously thought.” said Roy Richard Grinker, GW professor of anthropology and international affairs and member of the study’s research team.

“This research powerfully demonstrates that the methods one uses to study prevalence will profoundly influence the estimate” said Professor Grinker, author of Unstrange Minds: Remapping the World of Autism.

Under the leadership of Yale psychiatry and epidemiologist Young-Shin Kim, all children were screened with surveys distributed to both parents and teachers, and then evaluated using comprehensive diagnostic assessments. Unlike the studies carried out by the CDC which analyzed records and registries, the researchers attempted to look at each child in every school, even those without a record of any special education need. This method revealed cases that could have gone unnoticed to epidemiologists relying on a records-based approach.

“This study is further evidence that autism transcends cultural, geographic and ethnic boundaries and that autism is a major global public heath concern not limited to the western world.” said Autism Speaks Chief Science Officer Geraldine Dawson.

Source: George Washington University
Check out the link below for additional information

2011 All-Star Basketball Game Bronx/Hollis vs. Astoria/Whitestone

May 5, 2011 9:05 pm Published by

June 24th 2011 at Francis Lewis HS, 58-20 Utopia Parkway, Fresh Meadows, NY

Come watch QSAC staff play a competitive basketball game on June 24th at Francis Lewis High School at 7pm. All proceeds benefit the Afterschool Programs and we really hope that everyone comes to show their support. Tickets are only $10 per person so there is no excuse, everyone should come support this event. Tickets will be available online at You can also get tickets easily buy calling Perry Brown at 718-7-AUTISM, ext. 2059. Enjoy some popcorn and the special half time show and all the while your donation of only $10 helps children with autism receive quality Afterschool Programming. For more information or to speak with someone in the program about this event call Rocio Chavez at ext. 1414.

Congratulations to QSAC’s Own Andrea Sullivan

May 5, 2011 9:04 pm Published by

Andrea Sullivan, a QSAC Service Coordinator was recognized by the Queens Council on Developmental Disabilities, for “Service Excellence” in the area of Medicaid Service Coordination. Andrea was selected out of numerous submissions from various agencies by the Queens Council to receive this award because Andrea stood out amongst her peers in the field.
Andrea has made a lasting impact upon the consumers and families she works with and is respected by all of the other staff in her department. Andrea accepted the award during a ceremony held at the 2nd Annual Spring Conference on May 4th that was held at the Immaculate Conception Center in Douglaston, Queens. The award recognizes Andrea Sullivan’s commitment to serving and supporting individuals with developmental disabilities. Andrea has worked for QSAC for almost two years and is an amazing person who goes above and beyond for each family and consumer she represents. Congratulations Andrea and keep up the great work!

BCBA’s Can Now Call QSAC for CEU’s!

May 5, 2011 9:03 pm Published by
QSAC is proud to announce that we are now an official provider of continuing education credits (ACE) to Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA). Every person who holds a certification as an BCBA has to maintain their certification by taking continuing education courses from an approved provider. Recertification for many individuals typically takes place during the annual Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) Conference. However, many certified staff are unable to attend the conference because they are so busy helping children and their families. For these dedicated professionals in the autism field, QSAC can now offer an inexpensive and reliable source of continuing education courses/workshops.
The Behavior Analysis Certification Board (BACB) is an internationally recognized group that determines competence in both individual certificants and the organizations seeking to become approved providers of recertification continuing education courses. Gary Maffei, Executive Director of QSAC said “we sought to become an approved provider for one reason. Because this ultimately benefits the children and families we serve.”
QSAC has many individuals working in our programs that are also Board Certified Behavior Analysts. This certification is not given lightly and typically involves many hours of study and many hours of field-work supervised by an existing certified professional. “As the appointed ACE coordinator at QSAC for BACB, I am happy to report that our BCBA’s have over 100 years of combined experience in Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), and have worked with individuals with autism and their related disabilities in homes, schools, clinical, and residential settings. QSAC strives for excellence and will continue to develop and enhance the science of Applied Behavior Analysis by offering continuing education events for BCBA’s, representing the current best practices in Behavior Analysis.”
For more information about the BCBA certification or the courses/workshops that QSAC offers to both parents and professionals please contact QSAC’s Director of Training, Anne Denning at

Celebrating Success 2011

May 5, 2011 9:00 pm Published by

On the night of April 4th five of QSAC’s consumers were presented with awards from the Queens Council on Developmental Disabilities for successfully overcoming challenges and for making outstanding gains in the programs they attend.

The 5 consumers who were awarded certificates for their personal achievements are as follows: For the QSAC Preschool Zachary Zayas. Zachary received an award for “School-Age Success” and he is now more social, has developed his vocabulary and is using it, and to top it off Zachary is now shows the same skills at home that he does in his Preschool Classroom!

For the QSAC Day School we have Mark Huang. (See picture) Mark has made significant strides in the areas of academics, communication, and classroom behavior. Mark is now participating meaningfully in his classroom activities and is using sign language to communicate his wants and needs. Awesome Mark!

Tania Destin has made incredible gains socially and personally. Tania was a very timid young woman and did not take initiative to interact socially or engage in any personal hobbies during her free time. Now Tania is always taking initiative and engaging other consumers and staff and has even learned how to crochet and now she has embraced this new hobby and even makes scarves and hats and gives them out to her peers as gifts! Tania is enjoying herself more now that she has increased her own independence and personal satisfaction. Great Work Tania!

The fourth consumer recognized is Matthew Vergano. Mathew has been with QSAC for many years and is known by many of the staff at QSAC. Perry Brown, who had worked with Mathew many years ago, said “It was great to see Matt and his family coming out to the celebration of success awards. Mathew is growing up to be a fine young man and I hope he continues to make lasting changes in his life”. Mathew has had a smooth transition into the Day Habilitation program at QSAC and is actually the Assistant Manager of the Day Hab Store in Astoria. Mathew assists QSAC staff persons with administrative duties and is in charge of all of the various forms that are used in the day to day administration of QSAC’s programs and offices in Astoria. Mathew works hard every day and is extremely helpful to all of the staff and consumers at QSAC.

The fifth consumer to be recognized by the Council for fantastic work in overcoming their disability and for being a source of inspiration to many is Mikail Shklyarevsky. Mikail is a 23 year old man with autism who has received a Bachelor’s Degree from Queens College and is currently working on his Masters in Library Science. Mikail lives on his own in an apartment he acquired through the portal program with the assistance of QSAC. Mikail is a great young man who is known for his smile and kindness, not for his autism!

Gary Maffei, Executive Director, of QSAC said “on behalf of all of QSAC I congratulate our consumers for their hard work and success and I am pleased to see all of our young people making such fantastic gains in so many areas”. For more information on the Queens Council on Developmental Disabilities please call Perry J. Brown at 212-244-5560, ext. 2059.

Guns and Hoses Event Raises Thousands for QSAC

May 5, 2011 8:59 pm Published by

On March 12, retired NYC Firefighter and comedian Billy Bingo hosted a night of comedy at the Jeanne Rimsky Theater in Port Washington, NY to benefit autism education, specifically the QSAC and the Genesis day schools for children with autism. Billy generously donated his time, as did The Italian Chicks, the newest and hottest comedy team on the scene today. Co-chaired by QSAC parents Tim and Maria Dwyer and Genesis parent Sue Reek, the sold out event raised over $32,000 for the day school programs. This amount does not include the many in-kind donations received for the fabulous raffle and the cocktail reception. Our heartfelt thanks to Maria, Tim, Sue, Billy, the Italian Chicks, the volunteers, the guests and all the donors and sponsors.

Hoops for Autism 2011

May 5, 2011 8:58 pm Published by

Got Game? Prove It!
HOOPS for Autism Shooting Contest
August 12th, 2011 from 4-7PM
Register online at

Join us for an afternoon filled with music, refreshments and fun prizes as staff members, students, family and friends come out to shoot some hoops at the “Hoops for Autism” with a Free Throw Shooting Contest (from the foul line) and a 3-point Free Throw Contest. For more information, visit
Everyone can participate and we hope everyone comes out to support the Day School. For information about this event please call Dan Nemeth at 718-7-AUTISM, ext. 1411

MetLife Foundation Funds Day School Project

May 5, 2011 8:58 pm Published by

The MetLife Foundation recently awarded a Volunteer Ventures grant of $1,000 to QSAC in support of a project proposed by Danielle Dempsey, a MetLife employee who is also a “Junior Board” member of QSAC and volunteers with the organization. The grant will cover the purchase of three iPads and applications for a pilot program at the QSAC Day School. The Volunteer Ventures Program encourages and supports employee involvement at local nonprofit organizations that work to improve the quality of life for all. Grants are made by the MetLife Foundation for specific projects in which MetLife employees are involved in. If you or someone you know also works for MetLife please look into this program and see the many ways in which you too can help us help others.


QSAC is a New York City and Long Island based nonprofit that supports children and adults with autism, together with their families, in achieving greater independence, realizing their future potential, and contributing to their communities in a meaningful way by offering person-centered services.

QSAC pursues this mission through direct services that provide a supportive and individualized setting for children and adults with autism to improve their communication, socialization, academic, and functional skills.