Books are not my son Charlie’s favorite things but he does like to go for a (fast) visit to the library. One reason we often have to keep visits short is that Charlie has a hard time not talking when we are there and I have to say “gotta be quiet” a few too many times. People look up at his too-loud “choose a book!” and, while they go back to whatever they are doing, I feel the need to rush us down to the children’s section. I was pleased to receive a message from a friend who is a librarian regarding INFOLINK, the Eastern New Jersey Regional Library Cooperative, which is seeking information about libraries that successfully created programs for children and adults with autism:
There is a strategic need for libraries to provide services in proactive and creative ways to children and adults diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and their families. Successful, documented library models can serve as replicable programs across the New Jersey Library network. In response to this need, the INFOLINK Executive Board approved a Request for Proposal (RFP) at their meeting on September 19, 2007.
Infolink is seeking proposals for its program in “Welcoming Library Spaces for the Autism Community & Their Families” and I am curious as to what proposals might say, especially as Charlie is certainly more receptive to reading than he used to be. Two nights ago, we read two chapters of The Little Prince and, on his own, he repeated some sentences after me: “It looked like this” and “not a picture of a hat” and “‘ “Draw me a sheep!’”.
Does you library have any programs for special needs children? What kinds of programs would you like?