Parent To Parent of NYS


Capital District News

2016 Justice Center Code of Conduct Recognition Award Call for Nominations

The Justice Center is seeking nominations for its first Code of Conduct Recognition Award to recognize the dedicated men and women who provide direct care to people with special needs throughout New York State. Deadline for submission is Friday, July 22.

The winners will be selected in September and will be invited to a recognition lunch with the Justice Center Advisory Council on September 29. After the recognition lunch, award winners will have an opportunity to meet with New York State policy makers at the Capitol.

The NYS Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs (Justice Center) is seeking nominations for the 2016 Justice Center Code of Conduct Recognition Award to recognize the dedicated women and men who provide direct support to people with special needs throughout New York State. The Justice Center’s Code of Conduct for Custodians of People with Special Needs provides a framework for assisting people with special needs “live self-directed, meaningful lives in their communities, free from abuse and neglect, and protected from harm.” This award will recognize those who demonstrate a strong commitment to the provisions of the Code of Conduct.

More information about the award can be found on the Justice Center’s website at


Tina Beauparlant Receives Liberty Bell Award May 2, 2016

Parent to Parent of NYS is pleased to announce that Special Education Advocate, Tina Beauparlant will be the recipient of the Schenectady County Bar Association's Liberty Bell Award for 2016. The presentation of the Liberty Bell Award will be made as part of the Law Day celebrations taking place this Monday, May 2, 2016 at the Schenectady County Community College in the Van Curler Room.

The Liberty Bell Award is given annually to a member of the community by the SCBA. The recipient must be a non-lawyer who lives and works in Schenectady County who supports and promotes the ideals of integrity, justice, and access to liberty while helping to ensure the rights and entitlements of citizens through their work and endeavors. Tina was nominated based on her dedication to supporting parents and students with disabilities in their efforts to develop a better understanding of the law and their rights; her consistent advocacy and insightful training to support development of advocacy skills and to empower parents and students; in addition to her ongoing promotion and commitment to effective communication and collaboration between agencies serving this population to ensure equal access to federally funded programs and services for students with disabilities and their families.

The theme of this year's Law Day Celebration is “Miranda, More than Words” in recognition to the 50th anniversary of the Supreme Court Case, Miranda v. Arizona. Prior to the award presentation, there will be a brief speech by Judge Christine Clark, from the New York State Appellate Court, 3rd Department, who will speak to and identify how this pivotal case developed and safeguarded procedural protections in the interest of liberty and fairness for all citizens. Judge Clark will present at 10:30. The presentation of the Liberty Bell Award will follow Judge Clark's remarks.

In conjunction with the Law Day celebration, there is a pro-bono legal clinic which will run from 10:30-3:00 pm.

The entire event, including the legal clinic, is open to the public. Lay Advocates and the families we serve are encouraged to attend to join in recognizing Tina and to take advantage of the legal clinic, which will be staffed by at least one attorney familiar with special education issues.

Please join us in congratulating Tina on this distinguished accomplishment!

Michele Juda

Executive Director

Support Parents Needed! Are you a parent of a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder ages 5 to 15?

Parent to Parent of NYS is recruiting parents of children with disabilities and special health care needs who are willing to provide emotional support and information to other parents of children with the same or similar special need. Because of your story and experiences, you are uniquely qualified to offer this support.

While every parent of a child with a disability or special health care need is valued and encouraged to join our network of volunteer support parents, parents of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are in high demand due to the prevalence of autism spectrum disorders.

Support Parents are the heart of our Parent Matching program. Through our Parent Matching program we offer parents/caregivers the opportunity to connect one-to-one with a parent/caregiver of an individual with the same or similar disability or special health care need – someone who has “been there.” Someone like you!

Parents of children on the spectrum frequently request to speak to another family about issues ranging from living with ASD, accessing resources, and supporting an adult child's dream for a college education. Won't you share your experience with another family that would greatly benefit from hearing it?

Support Parent training is free and available in a group setting, one-on-one over the phone or online.

For more information visit or contact:

Lindsey Pensabene or  Dianne O'Connor Parent to Parent Coordinators. For Spanish speaking parents contact Valeria Jimenez. Click on names to send an email. 

Capital District Region
500 Balltown Road
Schenectady, NY 12304

College Success Program

The Autism Society of the Greater Capital Region, Schenectady ARC, and Schenectady County Community College are partners in the "College Success Program". The program provides support to students with ASD who are enrolling at Schenectady County Community College. Support will be given in the areas of academics, social needs, and independent living skills. 

There are a limited number of participants who will be accepted into the program. All applications will be carefully considered by a knowledgeable team.

Wildwood Programs to Offer Sibling Support Groups in the Fall

Wildwood Programs will offer two sibling support groups for sisters and brothers of children with special needs in the fall. 


Wildwood Programs will offer two sibling support groups for sisters and brothers of children with special needs in the fall.


"I'm Special Too" is for siblings between the ages of 8 and 12 and "Teen Sibs" is for teens 13 - 18.


Sibling support groups provide an opportunity for brothers and sisters of children with special needs to meet other siblings in a relaxed and supportive setting. 


The groups will begin to meet in October.  Wildwood is currently registering participants for both programs.


For questions or to request a registration form, please contact Stefanie Pivar at 518.640.3327 or spivar@wildwood



Advocate! The Capital District DDSO Family Support Services Consumer Council Needs You!

Parents of children with a developmental disability are needed to participate on the Family Support Consumer Council to develop and monitor family support services for the Capital district Developmental Disabilities Services Office's 9-county district.   Meetings take place on the second Monday of each month beginning at 6 p.m. Dinner is provided.

The Family Support Consumer Council works in partnership with the Capital District DDSO to develop and monitor policies, services and supports to enhance a family's ability to provide in-home care to their family member with a developmental disability. Services range from counseling and training, respite, recreation, to family reimbursement for the purchases of goods and services. For further information, please contact Eugene Gardner at 370-7443 or email 

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