The new Ontario Autism Program (OAP) will ensure autism services for children and youth are delivered consistently across the province, allow for flexibility and choice based on each child’s needs, and give families confidence in receiving quality services.
On June 26, families will begin to transition into the new OAP. The key components of the new program, beginning this month, include:
The government is committed to ensuring families are supported through a smooth and seamless transition as they enter the new OAP. Transition planning within the new program will be individualized, planned in advance and will be achieved in partnership with each child’s family, OAP professionals and service providers. Children and youth with a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder from a qualified professional will be eligible for the OAP up until the age of 18.
The province has worked closely with families, caregivers, advocates, clinicians and providers to build the new OAP, and will continue to engage with key stakeholders, including the OAP Advisory Committee, on the design and implementation of the new program. The new OAP will be fully in place by spring 2018.
Hands TheFamilyHelpNetwork.ca (Hands) and One Kids Place Children’s Treatment Centre (One Kids Place) provide autism services for children and youth across North Eastern Ontario. Hands and One Kids Place are strong community partners, committed to working towards providing more integrated autism services for children, youth and families. Both organizations will continue to provide complementary services in the best interest of individuals and families in our communities.
Hands and One Kids Place will ensure families reach the right door every time, regardless of which organization receives the call, through improved information sharing. Beginning June 2017, one call to either organization will give families across North Eastern Ontario access to one waitlist and a simple, integrated service experience, as part of the first phase of the Ontario Autism Program.
Together, as a regional provider, Hands and One Kids Place are pleased to offer families a variety of core foundational services as well as a broad continuum of behavioural services. These supports will build and strengthen the capacity of the individual child/youth, their family and those supporting them to teach new skills, reduce challenging behaviour, and foster independence in the meaningful areas of their lives.
The following foundational services are currently available for families in the North East Region Ontario Autism Program (NEOAP). When a new family enters the NEOAP they will receive a contact from their family support worker (FSW) within the first six weeks of referral. The FSW will either mail out or hand deliver a binder with autism information as well as resources found within their area. The family support worker will also connect with families about upcoming trainings in their area.
Trainings and information sessions will be offered to families through their family support worker will provide the family with a list of the upcoming trainings in their area or offer options to participate online. If a family cannot attend, they will receive the information in web format and/or paper copy from their family support worker.
Tip sheets are brief summaries of information that can be provided to help families understand a variety of themes that are relevant to their child/youth’s development or Family Service Plan. Tip sheets that are available for distribution are:
In this orientation, the Ministry of Children and Youth Services (MCYS) Guidelines of the Ontario Autism Program (OAP) will be reviewed. Discussion will be facilitated around how these guidelines will apply to the unique needs of children and families in the North East. This information session provides an overview of the continuum of behavioural services offered by the NEOAP as well as a description of the OAP Family Service Plan. Resources will be given to the families during the training which includes information on the program and available community supports. There will be an opportunity for questions and direction in supporting families unique needs.
In this workshop, families will develop a better understanding the diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and what it means to their child and family. The workshop will include a description of the diagnostic process and how a diagnosis is determined. Families will learn how genetic and environmental factors are associated with ASD and common issues that are associated with the disorder. Treatment options will be reviewed with an emphasis on evidence based practices. Resources will be given to the families during the training which includes information on the program and available community supports. There will be an opportunity for questions and direction in supporting families unique needs.
In this workshop, families will be provided with an overview of the science of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA). Families will learn how to effectively teach or strengthen skills by developing behavioural goals, using teaching strategies based on principles of ABA. Families will learn how to use the skills taught in various environments with various people. Families will be provided with a worksheet that corresponds with the presentation.
In this workshop, families will learn how to define behaviour and identify and understand why behaviour is happening. Families will learn methods of measuring behavior, as well as identifying teaching alternative behaviour. This workshop reviews general preventative strategies that may be effective in reducing behaviour. Families will be provided with a workbook that corresponds with the presentation.
The new Independent Clinical Review (ICR) process for the Ontario Autism Program (OAP) is now available.
The ICR offers families and their children the opportunity to have key components of their OAP Behaviour Plan reviewed by a team of independent Clinical Reviewers.
For more information on the ICR, please visit
John Waller, Program Manager – Ontario Autism Program
Ontario Autism Program for North Eastern Ontario
705-789-9985 ext. 5820 or 1-866-626-9100