Resources For Families

At the XEL Foundation, we understand that every individual with autism, along with their friends, families, and caregivers, all have unique experiences. Our goal is to share helpful resources that can shed some light and make a difference in the lives of those affected by autism.

Therapies/Social Groups

Intervention Fundamentals- In home intensive services to help with feeding, toilet training, sleep, communication.  |  412-438-3268

Sensory Link Pediatric Therapy-  Range of outpatient therapies for children birth to 18 years old.  | 412-487-7771

River Pediatric Therapy-  Range of outpatient pediatric therapies.  |  412-767-5967

Wesley Family Services-  Range of therapies for individuals and families of all ages including social groups and creative arts programs.  |  412-342-2270 or 888-222-4200

Chatterbox Program at the Center for Independence- A division of Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh specializing in school aged children social groups to build communication skills.  |  412-692-5580

The Children's Institute of Pittsburgh-  Expert services including autism, educational, behavioral health, family support, and more.  | 412-420-2400

DART/LEAP Preschools


Miracle Dental Associates-  Integrative Dentistry for Children & Special Needs  |  412-538-0010

Byte- An organization obsessed with what keeps us all smiling, dental health. Autistic children are likely to suffer many more oral health problems, including tooth decay, gum disease, and dental injury than children without autism. Additionally, sensory sensitivities also make effective oral hygiene routines and visits to the dentist challenging.

Check out their educational guide on dental care for neurodivergent children.


Pittsburgh Museums- reduced admission fees, sensory friendly days

Miracle League of SW Pennsylvania-  Everyone deserves a chance to play, individuals with special needs play baseball with a buddy

PNC Park- Sensory Room

Pittsburgh Airport- Sensory Room

Disney World- Cognitive Disability Services

Royal Caribbean- Autism Friendly Ships
Autism of the Seas staffed cruises 

Sensory Tools For At Home-  Swings, weighted blankets, Harkla Hug

Sensory Tools For At Home-  Everything sensory from gym to classroom to home

Autism Connection of Pennsylvania- Support, information, and advocacy 

General Resources

Department of Education
The Department of Education (ED) has resources to assist with the educational needs of children with autism spectrum disorders and other disabilities. The ED’s Special Education Technical Assistance and Dissemination Networkexternal icon links to a variety of websites and online resources that focus on special education issues, such as policy, technology, curriculum, and parent trainings. In addition, the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Servicesexternal icon (OSERS) within the ED has resources for parents and individuals, school districts, and states in the areas of special education, vocational rehabilitation, and research.

Autism NOW
Autism Now is an initiative of The Arc and The Administration on Developmental Disabilities. This national autism resource and information center is a central point of resources and information for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and other developmental disabilities, their families, and other key stakeholders.

Life Journey Through Autism Series, Organization for Autism Research (OAR)
OAR has published five Life Journey guidebooks and The Best of The OARacle to date. You can read their descriptions, preview each online, or download copies at no cost. Most are available in Spanish.

Operation Autism for Military Families
Operation Autism is a web-based resource specifically designed and created to support military families that have children with autism. It is from the Organization for Autism Research (OAR) and the American Legion Child Welfare Foundation. is a partnership of Federal agencies with a shared vision – to provide improved, personalized access to government assistance programs. This website can help you determine if there are government benefits you can receive.

Association of University Centers on Disabilities
The Association of University Centers on Disabilities is network of interdisciplinary centers advancing policy and practice for and with individuals with developmental and other disabilities, their families, and communities.

Autism and Asperger Syndrome Educator’s Guides, Organization for Autism Research (OAR)
These guides provide teachers and other education professionals with a plan for teaching a child with autism or Asperger syndrome in the general classroom setting. In addition to these guides, OAR has other tips for educators on its website.