UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School to Hold Autism Seminar
Role of Faith Communities, Individuals with Autism, Explored June 12
NEWARK — The Autism Center of New Jersey Medical School at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey is hosting a symposium which will look at the role faith communities play in assisting individuals living with autism. This informative event, made possible by a grant from The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation, is being held Tuesday, June 12. All Are Welcome: Bridging the Gap Between Autism and Faith is the third in a series of autism symposiums held at The Autism Center of NJMS. This event will focus on ways that faith communities can be supportive to individuals with autism and those who love them.
B. Madeleine Goldfarb, Director of Outreach and Education for The Autism Center of NJMS said, “Including members with autism or other developmental disabilities within the congregational setting is not charity, it is a matter of justice.” She said the goal of the symposium is to break down barriers to access in the faith community and acceptance from them. “This is an educational opportunity for clergy, lay leaders and families to learn how to make resources available to this population.”
The symposium is scheduled for noon to 6:30 pm at the Medical Science Building of New Jersey Medical School, 185 South Orange Ave., Newark. Topics include, among other things: Demystifying Autism, Creative Supports for Inclusive Faith Communities and Family Journeys into Faith Autism and Communities.
Autism is a complex developmental disorder. Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are developmental disabilities marked by impairment in social interaction and communication, which may also include obsessive interests, and repetitive or compulsive behaviors. These disorders include autistic disorder Asperger’s syndrome and pervasive developmental disorder, not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS). There is no known cause or cure.
The Daniel Jordan Fiddle Foundation was established to provide grants to programs that enrich the lives of adolescents and adults with ASD. The foundation’s goal is to recognize the individuality of persons with ASD and integrate them into lifestyles suitable to vocational, recreational, educational and residential opportunities that are stimulating and sustainable within the community.
For information on the symposium, call 973-972-9422 or visit http://www.umdnj.edu/autismcenter/.
UMDNJ is the nation’s largest free-standing public health sciences university with more than 5,700 students attending the state's three medical schools, its only dental school, a graduate school of biomedical sciences, a school of health related professions, a school of nursing and a school of public health on five campuses. Annually, there are more than two million patient visits at UMDNJ facilities and faculty practices at campuses in Newark, New Brunswick/Piscataway, Scotch Plains, Camden and Stratford. UMDNJ operates University Hospital, a Level I Trauma Center in Newark, and University Behavioral Health Care, a statewide mental health and addiction services network.