Autism Awareness Month…What about the siblings?

Swindoll grandkidsI received an e-mail last week from one of our former Board members who had recently spent time with a young adult sibling of a child who had been served for a number of years through the special needs ministry of her church. Her impression was that this young adult was continuing to struggle with the lingering effects of the dynamics in a loving Christian family impacted by a child with special needs, and her intuition is that there are lots of teens and young adults in the same boat who could very much benefit from the care and support available through a local church. Her quote…

“Not that you all need more to add to your already full plate, but would love at some point to see the ministry address this.”

imagesIn honor of Autism Awareness Month, I thought it would be appropriate to share a few resources focusing on siblings of kids with special needs, along with a wonderful resource from the Key Ministry website.

Gillian Marchenko is running a respite ministry in the church in Chicago where her husband serves as senior pastor…Here’s a link to an article she wrote last May in Chicago Parent magazine…Siblings in a Special Needs Family.

Here’s a featured post from Jolene Philo’s blogSiblings of Kids With Special Needs: Do Their Lives Change? 

Here’s some good advice from our friend and colleague Barb Dittrich for parenting siblings of kids with disabilities…Equal, but Different.

And finally, here’s a fabulous video Katie Wetherbee shot for Inclusion Fusion 2011 (available on our website) with Cody Thompson, Ashley Dane, and Austin Dane (siblings of Jonathan…Colleen Swindoll-Thompson’s son, Chuck Swindoll’s grandson) about their experience as siblings of a child with autism for Inclusion Fusion 2011…

Do you have great resources for those seeking to serve siblings of kids with special needs? Please feel free to post helpful resources in the comments section below.


Accessibility Summit 2013Our Key Ministry team will be hitting the road to be part of the 2013 Accessibility Summit, hosted by McLean Bible Church in suburban Washington D.C. on April 19th-20th. This year’s Summit features Emily Colson (daughter of Chuck) As an artist, author, and speaker, Emily is passionate about inspiring others to persevere through their challenges and appreciate life’s gifts. In her book Dancing with Max, she and her late father share the struggle and beauty of life with Max, Emily’s son with autism.

For more on our Key Ministry presentations, click here. For more information on the Summit and registration, click on the Summit logo to the right.

About Dr. G

Dr. Stephen Grcevich serves as President and Founder of Key Ministry, a non-profit organization providing free training, consultation, resources and support to help churches serve families of children with disabilities. Dr. Grcevich is a graduate of Northeastern Ohio Medical University (NEOMED), trained in General Psychiatry at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at University Hospitals of Cleveland/Case Western Reserve University. He is a faculty member in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at two medical schools, leads a group practice in suburban Cleveland (Family Center by the Falls), and continues to be involved in research evaluating the safety and effectiveness of medications prescribed to children for ADHD, anxiety and depression. He is a past recipient of the Exemplary Psychiatrist Award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Dr. Grcevich was recently recognized by Sharecare as one of the top ten online influencers in children’s mental health. His blog for Key Ministry, was ranked fourth among the top 100 children's ministry blogs in 2015 by Ministry to Children.
This entry was posted in Autism, Families, Inclusion Fusion, Key Ministry, Resources and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Autism Awareness Month…What about the siblings?

  1. Pingback: Siblings: Support Resources (Sib Panel Pt. 4) | DIANE DOKKO KIM

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