The Rise in Autism
1980: 1 in 10,000
1995: 1 in 500
2001: 1 in 250
2004: 1 in 166
2007: 1 in 150
2009: 1 in 110
2012: 1 in 88
2014: 1 in 68
One in 55 children in Katy has an
autism spectrum disorder diagnosis,

there is help and hope.

Katy Autism Support was founded in 2007 as a support group for caregivers of individuals diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder living in Katy, Texas.

Join the Conversation...

Katy Autism Support is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization committed to educating and empowering families living with autism in Katy, Texas.  We engage in lively conversation on our Yahoo Group on all topics related to autism.  There are more than 600 members participating in the online support group, many whom have a great breadth of knowledge and experience.  We have monthly meetings with speakers from the national level to professionals and providers from our own community. KAS is also dedicated to raising awareness of the needs of local families, and advocating for the fair, respectful treatment of all children regardless of the presence of a disability.  We have been involved in building bridges to schools, faith-based organizations and other private sector entities in Katy and across the country.

Come Find Us:

Join Katy Autism Support by clicking on this link Katy Autism Support click "Join This Group!" and leave a few sentences to let the moderator know why you want to be a part of KAS.  Most memberships are approved in 24 to 48 hours.
Find us on Facebook by typing Katy Autism Support in your Facebook search bar or click on the link below if you are viewing this from a mobile device, or go here to "Like" us!!/pages/Katy-Autism-Support/126446120715312

Meet us in person by attending support meeting. Meetings are held at St. Peter's United Methodist Church every third Tuesday from 7:00pm to 9:00 pm in Asbury Hall. Located at 20775 Kingsland Blvd., Katy, TX 77450.

For more information about monthly meetings, please send an email message to Cynthia Reece at 

Free childcare is available but must be reserved at least 24 hours in advance; contact Sarah Morrison, special needs ministry coordinator at to RSVP for childcare. You do not need to RSVP to attend meeting.

May 20, 2014 Support Meeting:

May 20th, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm; Katy Autism Support will host an introduction to Young Living Essential Oils with guest speaker Neches Phelps. Neches will introduce essential oils and how she has been using them with her two children on the autism spectrum for improved functioning and immune support. You will learn how they are highly concentrated, potent plant essences and how they are the immune system of the plant; liquid gold obtained from seeds, bark, leaves, stems, flowers, fruits and roots. They contain highly oxygenating molecules and deliver nutrients directly into cell nucleus and are higher potency than herbs.

t. Peter's United Methodist
Church 20775 Kingsland Blvd., in Asbury Hall, Katy, TX 77450. For more info contact Cynthia at

RSVP for free childcare to Sarah Morrison, special needs ministry coordinator
at You do not need to RSVP to attend meeting.

Study Looks at Stress of Parenting a Child on the Autism Spectrum:

Studying parenting stress in mothers of young children with autism spectrum disorder is the focus of a new study at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth) Medical School. “Although there is rising interest in parental stress associated with caring for children with autism, very few studies have examined parenting stress in this population across cultures,” says Dr. Noriko Porter, postdoctoral researcher in the UTHealth Medical School’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. They are currently recruiting about 40 mothers who have a child with autism between the ages of 2 and 5 in the Houston area. Because it is a cross-cultural study, those mothers (and their parents) should be U.S. born. They will fill out several questionnaires and be interviewed by researchers from the UT Medical School.  Co-investigator for the study is Dr. Katherine Loveland, professor of psychiatry and director of the C.L.A.S.S. (Changing Lives through Autism Spectrum Services) Clinic.

The participant will receive a small gift ($10 Starbucks gift card) and a brief summary of her child’s developmental information based on the questionnaires (60 minutes) and be interviewed by the researchers (up to 30 minutes). There are no known risks other than possible fatigue from completing the interview and questionnaires. Currently, there are five research locations in the Houston area, Texas Medical Center, The Monarch School, The Westview School, Spectrum of Hope, and South Montgomery Library (The Woodlands). It is possible there will be more research locations in the near future.

The study will compare the stress between mothers in Japan and mothers in the United States in order to learn more about how culture affects families with children who have been diagnosed with autism, a developmental brain disorder.

“Both are industrialized countries with very different value orientations. Japanese society’s orientation toward collectivism and conformity might lead to attitudes toward disabilities that are different from those in the United States, which values individualism and diversity,” Porter said. “There is a distinct contrast in parental practice between the two countries, such as promotion of closeness in Japan versus autonomy in the U.S. Differences in parenting norms and beliefs influence the way that mothers view behavior exhibited by their child with autism, which might explain the variance in their stress.”

Porter said they believe the study could help professionals and the public understand parenting stress as it is experienced in diverse cultures. The information could provide a basis for the development of interventions specifically designed to address culture-related risks in families of children with autism.

Enrollment will end in June 2014.  For more information, contact Porter at or


Wandering & Elopement:

Brunswick County, VA (WTVR) – A missing Central Virginia girl was found after several hours of searching Thursday night, May 30. The 11-year-old girl, with special needs, wandered out of her Lawrenceville home around 6:30 p.m. A frantic search led sheriff’s deputies through woods and over water. Several hours later the child was found, less than a mile from her home.  Officials, and the child’s mother, said the recovery was due to a Project Lifesaver bracelet the child wears. The bracelet allows police to track not only children with special needs, but also Alzheimer’s patients.

At least 17 children with autism are known to have died in 2013 after slipping away from their caregivers. All but one of them drowned, evidence of a fascination that many children with autism have with water... Wandering has led to the deaths of more than 60 children in the past four years, and the fear of it can make daily life a harrowing, never-let-your-guard-down challenge for parents.

Read two rescue stories at the links below:

Katy Autism Support partnered with the Fort Bend County Sheriff’s department in 2011 to implement Project Lifesaver International. With a grant from the U.S. Department of Justice/Office of Justice Programs/Bureau of Justice Assistance our organization was awarded grant funding. Project Lifesaver helps provide rapid response to save lives and reduce potential for serious injury for adults and children who wander due to Alzheimer’s, autism, Down syndrome, dementia and other related cognitive conditions. Project Lifesaver provides equipment, training, certification and support to law enforcement, public safety organizations and community groups throughout the country and nation. 

If you have a loved one who has a tendency to wander/elope and lives in Fort Bend County, please contact Fort Bend County Deputy Jean Gobar at 832-473-2761 for more info on how to acquire a small personal transmitter, which is worn around the wrist or ankle that emits an individualized tracking signal. Project Lifesaver went live in Fort Bend County on 12-1-2011. Don't let the cost of the equipment be a barrier to implementing this program in your county. Most, if not all current clients have had their devices sponsored by a business and we conduct fundraising activities to pay for replacement batteries and wrist bands, which are changed monthly. Read a report by local KRIV Fox26 Houston News when they interviewed one of our
current co-presidents and Board of Directors at this link;

Help us raise awareness for wandering and safety for our loved ones with autism. If you live in an area that does not have the Project Lifesaver International program, please contact PLI at 1-877-580-5433 and they will help provide the necessary information to help bring the program to your community and to help increase prevention and safety in your community.

Project Lifesaver now has a solution and a new division specifically for Non-PLI areas, called “PAL” Protect and Locate With the addition of PAL Project Lifesaver will help provide protection and safety to even more individuals who wander due to Autism, Down syndrome, Alzheimer’s, dementia, or other cognitive conditions.  Please visit for more information about how to subscribe to PAL.

GREAT NEWS! If you are in a PLI area, and the agency approves, you can get a transmitter directly from PLI for $95.00 and pay $25.00 per month. If not in a PLI area you can get PAL. 

Wandering Statistics:

  • In a recent NAA online survey, 92% of the respondents said their autistic child was at risk of wandering.
  • Wandering is the most life-threatening behavior associated with Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) (Source: Alzheimer’s Association)

Teach your children how to swim or seek out swim lessons taught by a certified instructor with experience teaching special needs children how to swim.

Houston Swim Club
Year-round children’s indoor swim lessons.
Tracy Laman, owner
1711 N. Fry Road
Katy, TX 77449
Year-round children’s indoor swim lessons. Has enrolled and worked with special needs children, but classes are not specific to autism.

Houston (Private) Swim Lessons

Maureen Burch
They travel to your home pool to teach your children swimming lessons, offering a familiar environment for your children to help accelerate their progression. 

KATY Aquatics SwimAmerica
5506 1st Street
Katy, TX 77493

(281) 391-7200

For more information about Katy Aquatics Programs, send email to

Texas Swim Academy
Janin Huerter
Adaptive Aquatics Program
3514 Greenbusch

Katy, TX 77494

 Law enforcement officer demonstrating a tracking  device.

Caregiver Safety Toolkit:

In 2012, the National Autism Association found that from 2009 to 2011, accidental drowning accounted for 91% total U.S. deaths reported in children with autism subsequent to wandering, and that 23% of total wandering-related deaths occurred while the child was in the care of someone other than a parent. 
You can download a caregivers toolkit from the National Autism Association Safety Initiative's AWAARE website, download and begin using your Big Red Safety Toolkit today. Enclosed, you will find:
•Caregiver Checklist
•Family Wandering Emergency Plan (FWEP)
•First-responder profile form. Please fill out and provide a copy to your local law enforcement agencies.
•Swimming Lessons Tool
•Root-cause Scenario & Strategies Tool
•Stop Sign Prompts
•Social Stories
•Caregiver Log
•Sample IEP Letter. (Never allow restraint/seclusion practices into any IEP as this increases associated risks)
•How To Get Tracking Technology In Your Town
•General Awareness Letter: share with schools, homeowner’s association, law enforcement agencies, 
physicians, etc.

•Five Affordable Safety Tools
•Caregiver Resources One-sheeter

A video for first responders by National Autism Association:

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