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Elkhart County Resources

Behavior Analysis Center for Autism (BACA)
30380 County Road 6
Elkhart, IN 46514
574.343.2001 - phone
574.343.2156 - fax
Contact Tracy Harrison:

Elkhart County Clubhouse - Clubhouse is a community where people who have a history of mental illness can come to rebuild their lives. This includes the anxiety or depression that many on the autism spectrum experience. The Clubhouse offer support for education, or for returning to the workforce through a variety of entry-level positions, as well as meaningful activities to become involved in. 114 S. Fifth St., Goshen, IN 46528, (574) 971-5210.

First StepsFirst Steps is the State of Indiana’s early intervention system. It serves families with infants and toddlers (ages birth to three) who are experiencing developmental delays or have a diagnosed condition that has a high probability of resulting in a developmental delay.
North East Indiana First Steps System Point of Entry (SPOE)
700 E Beardsley Ave Ste 14A
Elkhart, IN 46514
Toll Free: 1-866-725-2398
Phone: 574-293-2813
Fax: 574-293-2300

GPS: Guiding Parents to Services. A project of ADEC for families in Elkhart County with a child who has a disability. Helps parents connect with community resources. Contact Viv Blakeslee 574-294-6197 Ext 3104.

H.E.L.P. Our Kids - Advocacy organization for families affected by disabilities in Elkhart County and nearby. Assistance with IEP Case Conferences, Medicaid Waivers, Disability Rights, and Community Services (School Spec.Ed programs, ADEC, Logan Center, DunGarvin, Anthony Wayne, Real Services, home medical care, medical specialists, therapeutic services, and more). Contact Brian Replogle,

Loveway, Inc. Therapeutic Equestrian Services for individuals with disabilities. Through therapeutic horseback riding, students not only learn the basics of horsemanship, but also gain skills that improve their daily lives. 54151 County Road 33, Middlebury, IN 46540; 574-825-5666,

NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) of Elkhart County - Monthly family support group. Family to Family classes provide training on mental illness to those who have a family member with a mental illness. Peer to Peer classes provide similar education for persons with a mental health diagnosis.

Parent Source - Monthly gathering of parents whose children receive services to improve their mental health. Fourth Monday evenings at Oaklawn Elkhart, 2600 Oakland Avenue. Contact Bonnie Raine, 574-533-1234, Ext 367.

Shoots Game Club - A social and self-advocacy group for older teens and young adults, ages 16-24. Contact Viv Blakeslee 574-294-6197 Ext 3104. Monthly activities in Goshen on third Fridays.

Special Olympics --Elkhart County provides opportunities for individuals with intellectual disabilities to participate in year round sports training & competition. It helps over 200 Athletes  develop fitness, build skills, learn & demonstrate courage, experience the joy of success & belonging, become involved in the community, build lasting friendships & improve self-esteem.

Therapy Playce. Occupational and physical therapy. Locations in Nappanee and Goshen. 

The Family Gateway. An online mental health resource of the Regional System of Care for Elkhart and St. Joseph Counties.

Regional Resources
Autism Society of Indiana's Autism Ally for north central Indiana is Colleen Spano. Phone toll-free: 800-609-8449 ext 202. Allies are ASI staff members who are available to listen, answer your questions and connect you with local resources.

Chiara Home is a not-for-profit organization that provides out-of-home respite care services for people with special needs.

Busy Hands of Michiana creates therapeutic and comforting gifts out of recycled materials for people who struggle with autism and a range of other life challenges. They make weighted blankets, among other things. If your loved one with autism would benefit from one of their gifts, contact Christine Guth.  They appreciate donations of fabric, trim, thread, yarn, and many other items, listed on their website.

Easter Seals-Arc of Northeast Indiana•   The Autism Support group "Encourage, Empower and Enjoy the Autism Spectrum" meets 3rd Monday of the month, 7-8:30 pm at 4919 Projects Drive Easter Seals ARC campus. This group is for anyone interested. Contact
     Asperger’s Support Group meets 2nd Monday of the month at 7:00pm, Lutheran Hospital, Function Room 4 in Cafeteria. This group is for families & others to receive professional and personal support. Contact Sue Christman at, 260-456-4534 x271.
    Support for the Adult Persons with Asperger’s Group meets 2nd Monday of the month at 6:00 pm Lutheran Hospital, Function Room 4 in Cafeteria. This group is for those affected with Asperger’s age 18 and up. Contact John Graham at 260-341-6921, or Sue Christman at, 260-456-4534.

FUN Lab at Notre Dame - Researchers and clinicians working to understand neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism, Aspergers, and PDD-NOS. The F.U.N. Lab is a research lab dedicated to developing and testing the efficacy/effectiveness of cutting-edge treatments for autism spectrum disorders.  It is also a teaching lab that  provides supervision and learning opportunities for Notre Dame students aspiring to work with children with disabilities.

Indiana MENTOR. Individualized services or people on Indiana's Family Supports Waiver. Private pay accepted. 260-485-5899. 

Joe's Kids. Speech, Physical, and Occupational Therapies. Warsaw, IN. 

LEL Home Services. Provider of services to individuals on Indiana's Medicaid Waivers in search of residential and community supports utilizing a self-directed model of support. Expanding into Elkhart County.

Lighthouse Autism Center
3730 Edison Lakes Parkway
Mishawaka, IN 46545
Second location in Warsaw
Providers of intensive center based ABA therapy for children with Autism. Lighthouse believes in
offering hope to every child, every family.

Ligonier Support Group for parents of children with disabilities - Contact Rebecca Frey, (260) 894-4777.

Meridian Health Services. Integrated physical and mental health services. Mental health services for individuals with both developmental and mental health challenges. Wraparound services to help families avoid residential placement of a child. 1818 Went S., Suite A, Mishawaka, IN 46545. 574-254-0229.

Mosaic. "A life of possibilities for people with intellectual disabilities." Behavior consulting, waiver services, residential services, respite care, and more. Contact Jeff Malcolm 574-674-0726. 

Partnership for Behavior Change.574-329-6856. Applied Behavior Analysis services for children and teens with Autism and Asperger's in South Bend, Indiana.

Shear Sunshine. Sensory-friendly Haircuts. Colleen Spano, licensed cosmetologist. 574-993-2196.

Sonya Ansari Center for Autism - (South Bend) support, information, resources, and services, including behavior consultation. Groups for parents, teens, adults on the spectrum, social skills development, girls, siblings.

Special Friends of Notre Dame and Saint Mary's. Special Friends Club of Notre Dame pairs together students with  children with autism from the South Bend region.

Sunshine Behavior Consulting. Colleen Spano, M.S.Ed.,

Indiana Statewide Resources

About Special Kids (A.S.K.) - information and resources about children in Indiana with special needs, on topics such as health insurance, special education, community resources and medical homes. Parent support.

Anderson Woods in Perry County provides a 4 day/3 night camp experience to a total of 200 kids and adults with disabilities during the months of June and July.  Kids (20 kids /session) come during the month of June and the adults (30 adults/session) come in July. For more information phone 812.639.1079

Autism Resource Network of Indiana  - resource site  by Autism Society of Indiana

Autism Society of Indiana - the Indiana state chapter of Autism Society of America. The Goshen Asperger Autism group is an affiliate of ASI.

Bureau of Developmental Disability Services
(BDDS) provides services for individuals with developmental disabilities that enable them to live as independently as possible in their communities.

Camp ROCKS - a 5-night, 6-day summer outdoor camp for youth on the autism spectrum ages 10-18. For information and an application contact Easter Seals Crossroads, 317-466-2001 ext 3087.

CeDIR, Indiana's Disability Library -  The Center for Disability Information and Referral offers a free lending library of over 8,000 disability-related books, videos, and kits.  When you find something you want to borrow, let us know, and we'll send it out to you! Autism Resources Blog.

Children's Special Health Care Services
provides supplemental medical coverage to help families of children who have serious, chronic medical conditions (including autism spectrum conditions), age birth to 21 years of age, who meet the program's financial and medical criteria. Program helps families pay for treatment related to their child's condition.

Family Voices - Family Voices Indiana is a family-led organization that provides information, education, training, outreach, and peer support to families of children and youth with special health care needs and the professionals who serve them. "Special health care needs" includes the autism spectrum.

Fifth Freedom Network -- A grassroots, cross-disability, consumer organization dedicated to removing the physical and social barriers that often hold people with disabilities hostage to poverty, isolation and underachievement. They have an extremely informative information service that you can customize to your particular interests.

First Steps. Family-centered, locally-based, coordinated system that provides early intervention services to infants and young children (under age 3) with disabilities or who are developmentally vulnerable.

HANDS in Autism - outreach and training extension of the Christian Sarkine Autism Treatment Center, Riley Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Clinic, Indianapolis.

Governor's Council for People with Disabilities - promotes public policy leading to the independence, productivity and inclusion of people with disabilities in all aspects of society. Links to many more Indiana disability resources and organizations.

Indiana Resource Center for Autism - training, consultation, research, and information. Website contains an extensive collection of full-text articles for parents, educators, and others who care about children and adults on the autism spectrum. Want help with a specific topic? This is a great place to look -- or call and speak to their knowledgeable staff. Where and how to obtain a diagnosis in Indiana.
Family Supports Medicaid Waiver information.

INSOURCE - information and training to assure effective educational programs and appropriate services for children and young adults with disabilities in Indiana

Spectrum Training Systems - One and two-day conferences with nationally known presenters, held in Indiana and adjacent states

Students on the Spectrum Club at Indiana University

TACA Indiana (Talk About Curing Autism) - TACA provides support and education for families affected by autism through autism education events, the Autism Journey Guide, Parent Mentor Program, and more. TACA can be particularly helpful for those interested in exploring biomedical approaches to treating autism.

The Arc of Indiana - Indiana's leading advocacy association for people with intellectual and other developmental disabilities and their families. Home of The Arc Master Trust, a pooled special needs trust serving Hoosiers of all disabilities.

Vocational Rehabilitation Services - provides individualized services to enhance and support people with disabilities to prepare for, obtain or retain employment.

Selected national organizations

Association for Science in Autism Treatment. Educates parents, professionals, and consumers by disseminating accurate, scientifically-sound information about autism and its treatment and by combating inaccurate or unsubstantiated information. List of autism treatments and interventions with summaries of the research supporting them. 

Autism Research Institute offers online educational events, resources for adults, and more. Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist helps parents evaluate the effectiveness of various treatments for a specific child. 

Autism Society of America -" the nation’s leading grassroots autism organization." Focus: Improving the lives of all affected by autism. Autism Source offers an online database of resources or phone consultation (call 800-328-8476).

Autism Speaks - "the nation's largest autism science and advocacy organization." Focus: to change the future for all who struggle with autism spectrum disorders.  Video clips for identifying young children at risk for autism. Transition Toolkit -- a guide for assisting families on the journey from adolescence to adulthood.

GRASP (Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership) - national advocacy group for and by adults on the spectrum, with support groups in many cities

M-CHAT. Online screening tool  to assess autism risk in toddlers. 

National Autism Network. The National Autism Network aims to be the largest online resource for the autism community providing a social network, nationwide provider directory, events calendar, discussion forums, autism news, expert written content and thousands of resources. 

OASIS @ MAAP - articles, educational resources, links, discussion boards, support groups. National  and international autism spectrum organization with headquarters in Indiana.

Tools for coping

Lives in the Balance is the non-profit organization founded by child psychologist Dr. Ross Greene, author of The Explosive Child and Lost at School, to advocate on behalf of behaviorally challenging kids. Free, web-based resources to help people understand these kids in ways that are more compassionate and accurate and help them in ways that are more effective.

Social Thinking (term coined by Michelle Garcia Winner) strategies teach individuals how their own social minds work - why they and others react and respond the way they do, how their behaviors affects those around them, and from this, how behaviors are affecting their own emotions, responses to and relationships with others across different social contexts.

Financial assistance
- Two attachments at the bottom of this page list organizations that offer financial assistance to qualifying families affected by autism.

Our Options Policy

We follow the Options Policy of ASI and Autism Society of America, which means we do not endorse or promote the providers, organizations or resources listed here but offer them as resources for you to choose those that work best in your family.
Christine Guth,
Feb 29, 2012, 5:35 PM
Christine Guth,
Nov 25, 2011, 5:42 AM
Christine Guth,
Nov 25, 2011, 5:42 AM