The Autism Society of Colorado is “Opening Doors” for Kids

The Autism Society of Colorado maintains The Opening Doors™ Program to provide an inclusive and welcoming environment for autistic children and their family members. As affected families know all too well, it can be difficult to share in basic community experiences without being disruptive, judged, and subsequently ostracized. Yet, denying autistic children these experiences leads to an isolation and loneliness that is equally intolerable. It can be a truly miserable example of being between a rock and a hard place.

When poorly run, special programs can feel diminishing in themselves. Ideally, these programs can serve as a bridge to further social integration down the road, rather than inadvertently reinforcing the idea that autistic children are to always be kept separate. In fact, The Opening Doors Program goes beyond the social component of public venues and community experiences. Just as big of an issue—and here’s another thing that families affected by autism will recognize—but the program also works with businesses and destinations to create a more accommodating sensory experience that has less chance of overwhelming the autistic child. You can find upcoming opportunities on the ASC Calendar of Events.


Interested in Being Part of The Opening Doors™ Program

The ASC partners with local businesses and national organizations to continue to identify new opportunities for its program. Whether it’s dining, shopping, fun, sports, edutainment, work with ASC to increase exposure for your organization while making a positive contribution to the community at large. Here are the organizations currently working with The Opening Doors Program.

Light in the Dark: Orphaned Bear Cub Rescued from Colorado Wildfires

If you live in Colorado, you’re likely aware of the wildfires currently blazing across the western and southern part of the state. Thousands of homes have been evacuated in recent weeks as the fires continue to spread. But this website is “Colorado for Good,” right? Our news tool only covers encouraging or inspiring news. Despite the destruction caused by these fires, there has been a glimmer of hope and something of a feelgood story for local wildlife. The Denver Post tells the story of an orphaned bear cub rescued from the flames.

Firefighters were working on a massive fire just north of Durango, which burned 47,000 acres of national forest. They spotted a small bear cub wandering alone through a burned-out area of the forest, but there was no sign of her mother. The firefighters quickly observed that the cub’s feet were severely burned. The Colorado Parks and Wildlife staff quickly began treating the animal, who was estimated to be four or five months old, at their Frisco Creek wildlife facility near Del Norte.

The manager of the Frisco Creek facility was unsure if the baby bear was going to make it. The firefighters were also skeptical of the bear’s chances, speculating that it likely hadn’t eaten in several days. How the cub became separated from its mother is unknown, but wildlife professionals speculate she placed the baby in a safe place but was unable to return. Local staff do not know if the mother is still alive.

There is a slight danger to treating bears to injuries. After a period of time, cubs can become habituated to human interaction, making them unfit to return to the wild. To address this issue, the staff members at Frisco Creek have arranged so that the bear has very limited interaction with humans; when she receives treatment, she is anesthetized, then wakes up when humans are no longer present. Professionals estimate that her feet will need to be bandaged for up to a month; after that time, she will move into a larger facility with four other cubs. Though no decisions have been made about how the bears will be released, it is encouraging and inspiring to know that these professionals are doing all they can to ensure the health and safety of this baby bear.


Children’s Hospital Colorado Ranked Among Top 10 in the Nation

U.S. News & World Report recently named Children’s Hospital Colorado to its 2018-19 Best Children’s Hospitals Honor Roll. This distinction is only awarded to the top 10 best children’s hospitals in the United States, making this a truly prestigious honor. The Report‘s annual rankings recognize the top 50 pediatric facilities across the United States in ten separate pediatric specialties. These include cancer, cardiology and heart surgery, diabetes and endocrinology, gastroenterology and gastrointestinal surgery, neonatology, nephrology, neurology and neurosurgery, orthopedics, pulmonology, and urology. A higher ranking within a specialty awards more points to a hospital; the more points, the more likely a hospital is to be recognized within the Honor Roll.

Children’s Hospital Colorado received very high marks in all ten of the Report‘s ranked specialties. In fact, five of Children’s Colorado’s specialties were within the top ten; neonatology was ranked #4, cancer care was ranked #8, and diabetes & endocrinology, gastroenterology & GI surgery, and pulmonology all ranked #7 in the nation. Rankings rely on clinical data and an annual reputation survey of pediatric specialists. They are the only comprehensive source of quality-related information on U.S. pediatric hospitals. This year’s rankings will be published in the U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Hospitals 2019” guidebook, which will be available in late September of 2018.

This hospital’s dedication to pediatric medicine is tireless and compassionate. The president and CEO, Jena Hausman, reiterated the pride felt in delivering the best possible care to every patient. She continued, saying, “We take pride in delivering the best possible care to every single child who walks through our doors. Ranking in the top 10 is a testament to our talented and compassionate pediatric specialists who this past year cared for kids from all 50 states and more than 35 countries.”

Children’s Hospital Colorado has been caring for kids of all ages since 1908. They treat and heal more children than any hospital in their seven-state region, serving as pioneers for new treatments. The research and treatment conducted at Children’s Colorado is shaping the future of pediatric medicine. We may be a bit biased, but we can’t think of a more qualified hospital to have received this honor.


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