giving back

Autism Acceptance Month - Skidmore College

Contributed by Sarah of the Neurodiversity and Autism Acceptance group at Skidmore College 

Image description: Students at Skidmore College gathered around a table of stim toys and autism acceptance materials.

Image description: Students at Skidmore College gathered around a table of stim toys and autism acceptance materials.

Our advocacy booth for Autism Acceptance Month was really successful! It was held on April 14th at Skidmore College, and was led by a few different groups, most notably Signmore (the campus' brand new sign language club) and Bystander Intervention (a group dedicated to stopping bullying).

Image description: A cupcake with white frosting and a red infinity symbol in the center.

Image description: A cupcake with white frosting and a red infinity symbol in the center.

Image description: A table displaying many types of stim toys including fidgets, a sensory brush,chewables, jewelry and plushies.

Image description: A table displaying many types of stim toys including fidgets, a sensory brush,chewables, jewelry and plushies.

Most of the people leading the table were neurodivergent in some way (autistic, ADHD, etc.) or a part of the Deaf community (from the sign language club). We gave out lots of information and people seemed very interested to learn.

Image description: Cropped view of people standing at a table displaying autism acceptance materials, mini tins of Play-do, cupcakes and stim toys.

Image description: Cropped view of people standing at a table displaying autism acceptance materials, mini tins of Play-do, cupcakes and stim toys.

The stim toys were a big draw to the table; everyone wanted to play with them! Hopefully, this will lead to people challenging thier msconceptions about autistic people. Thanks to Stimtastic for helping it get off the ground!

Image description:: Close up view of autism acceptance flyers, cupcakes with colorful infinity symbols on white frosting and mini tins of Play-do

Image description:: Close up view of autism acceptance flyers, cupcakes with colorful infinity symbols on white frosting and mini tins of Play-do

Autism Welcome Packets Project

Guest post contributed by Cara

I am president of my university’s chapter of an organization called TEAAM (Together Enhancing Autism Awareness in Mississippi). We recently put together “Autistic Community Welcome Packets”, which include:

  • ASAN’s “Welcome to the Autistic Community” book
  • an infographic about famous autistic people
  • “Understanding the Spectrum”, a comic by Rebecca Burgess that explains what it really means when we say that autism is a spectrum
  • a welcome note from us
  • a Tangle toy donated by Stimtastic (thank you!)
  • a sticker
  • a coloring page

These packets will be donated to a local clinic that does autism assessments, so that autistic people can receive the packets on the day they are diagnosed. I came up with the idea for this project while thinking about how the first messages people receive about autism are often negative ones. I want autistic people and their families to understand the ideas of autism acceptance and neurodiversity from the start. In particular, I want people on the spectrum to know that there are many others like themselves, and that their differences are not something to be ashamed of.

--Cara

 

Giveaway A Day in April

Stimtastic is doing a Giveaway a Day in April!

April is Autism Acceptance and Autism Awareness month. It's also a month that can be really hard for autistic people to get through. So we're hoping to making things a little less hard by creating a fun new giveaway each day.

Most giveaways will be small - stim toys and jewelry - but we've also got a few big days planned, including a premium AAC software app,  an iPad mini and noise cancelling headphones. We'll also be doing second-chance giveaways--one more chance to win a giveaway you entered during the preceding week. That means each giveaway you enter gives you two chances to win! 

Bookmark this post and check back regularly for updates. We'll post details on each days' giveaway here, including how and where to enter, who won and what's coming up next. 

Image by Lil’ Pink Coupe.

Image by Lil’ Pink Coupe.

April 1st: Giveaway announcement - spread the word

  • How to enter: Like/Share/Comment on the giveaway announcement post on Facebook or Reblog on Tumblr to enter
  • Prize: Chewable jewelry item of your choice
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 2nd
  • Winner: earthgirlfrombakerstreet and stopwatchplz on Tumblr and Cinzia Procter on Facebook (3 winners were chosen due to the high number of entries and because these are small prizes and because I felt like it)

April 2nd: Are you Walking in Red today? Tell/Show us how!

  • How to enter: On the designated Facebook post, share a photo of or tell us about your Walk in Red participation
  • Prize: Surprise pack of red chewable jewelry and stim toys
  • Deadline: Any time on April 2nd
  • Winner: Jen Davis

April 3rd:  Tweet about your favorite stims

  • How to enter: Tell us your favorite stim using the hashtag #stimtastic
  • Prize: Dog and Robot fidget necklaces
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 4th
  • Winner: Casper Devlin

April 4th:  Share a photo and tag Stimtastic on Instagram

  • How to enter: Snap a photo of a pattern or other visually pleasing design and tag stimtastic
  • Prize:  Thinking Putty in color of your choice
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 5th
  • Winner: Pamela Ceresani Gilbertson

April 5th:  Second Chance Drawing

  • How to enter: If you entered any of the previous 4 giveaways, you're already entered in this one! We'll randomly draw one person from all of the past 4 days' entrants.
  • Prize: Same prize that was up for grabs on the day you entered originally. (example: you entered the April 3rd drawing and your name is drawn in the second chance drawing then you win the two necklaces)
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 5th
  • Winner: autistically-trans-boy won on a second chance entry from giveaway #1

April 6th:  Stim Toy Collections

  • How to enter: Share or submit a photo of your stim toy collection or favorite stim toys on Tumblr. If you share on your own Tumblr blog, be sure to tag Stimtastic using an @ mention (@stimtastic) so we see it.
  • Prize: Set of 4 tangles (your choice of colors)
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) April 7th
  • Winner: anonymus-maximus-er

April 7th:  Autism Acceptance on Facebook

  • How to enter: What does autism acceptance mean to you? Share your thoughts on the Facebook post today.
  • Prize: A pair of spinner rings
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) April 8th
  • Winner: Kassiane Alexandra S. 

April 8th:  Autism Acceptance on Twitter

  • How to enter: Complete the sentence "Autism acceptance is  . . . " using the hashtag #autismacceptanceis on Twitter.
  • Prize: A "Keep Calm and Stim On" maze pen, "Nothing About Us Without Us" keychain and "Flappy Hands Are Happy Hands" stim toy
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) April 9th
  • Winner:  Tavros Makara

April 9th: AAC App Giveaway - win either Verbally Premium (iOS) or TalkTablet (iOS or Android) - US residents only. AAC (Augmentative and Alternative Communication) apps are used by people who are primarily nonspeaking, have unreliable speech or sometimes require a text-based means of communication. Please only enter the giveaway if this describes you (parents may enter for a child).

  • How to enter: To enter, comment on the AAC giveaway announcement post on Facebook or Reblog on Tumblr with the name of the app you are entering to win (Verbally or TalkTablet). 
  • Additional rules: (1) To use the app, you must already own a compatible Apple or Android device. (2) US residents only. (3) Winner will receive either Verbally Premium (typing-based AAC) or TalkTablet (picture-based AAC) app as stated in their entry. 
  • Prize: Verbally Premium (iOS) app or TalkTablet (iOS or Android) app
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 13th
  • Winner:  Peter Lepera

April 10th:  Share a photo and tag Stimtastic on Instagram

  • How to enter: Snap a photo of something that makes you happy and tag stimtastic
  • Prize:  Snake Twist in the color of your choice
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 11th
  • Winner:  Claire Walker

April 11th:  Youtube Subscribers

  • How to enter: Be a subscriber to Stimtastic's Youtube channel - we'll randomly draw one subscriber's name at 9 AM on Sunday the 12th
  • Prize:  Color in Motion and Spiral Color in Motion visual stim toys
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 12th
  • Winner: Rachel Sales

April 12th:  Second Chance Drawing

  • How to enter: If you entered the previous week's giveaways, you're already entered in this one! We'll randomly draw one person from all of the completed giveaways during the past week.
  • Prize: Same prize that was up for grabs on the day you entered originally. (example: you entered the April 10th drawing and your name is drawn in the second chance drawing then you win the snake twist)
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 12th
  • Winner:  deafdestroya on instagram (second chance on giveaway #10)

April 13th:  Stimming Haikus!

  • How to enter: Write and submit or share a haiku about stimming (or a stimmy haiku) on Tumblr. If you share on your own Tumblr blog, be sure to tag Stimtastic using an @ mention (@stimtastic) so we see it.
  • Prize: A set of 4 building block highlighters and a pair of "Keep Calm and Stim On" maze pen
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) April 14th
  • Winner: failingguide 

April 14th: Help spread the word about the Stimtastic Chewable Jewelry Design Contest

April 15th:  What Stimming Means on Twitter

  • How to enter: What does stimming mean in your life? Let us know using the hashtag #Stimmingis on Twitter.
  • Prize: A pair of Klixx stim toys
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 16th
  • Winner:  Moonygirl

April 16th: iPad Mini Giveaway - Today's giveaway is for an iPad Mini. Many autistic individuals use a tablet to assist with communication, executive function and/or sensory regulation (stimmy apps!). If you or your autistic child would benefit from using an iPad and don't already own one, this giveaway is for you.

  • How to enter: Like/Share/Comment on the iPad Mini giveaway announcement post on Facebook or Reblog on Tumblr 
  • Additional rules: (1) US residents only. (2) Entrants should be autistic individuals or the parent/guarding of an autistic individual who will receive the iPad.
  • Prize: Apple iPad Mini (16GB, Wi-Fi)
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 20th
  • Winner:  Olivia Montoya

April 17th: Treat Yourself! (Instagram giveaway)

  • How to enter: Do something nice for yourself, snap a photo that captures it in some way and tag stimtastic. Need some ideas? Paint your nails, change your bed sheets, make a smoothie, wear your favorite shirt, make a blanket fort, twirl in circles, pet your cat, play your favorite video game, do something fun with your hair, take a nap, infodump about your favorite subject. 
  • Prize: A trio of stress balls (choose from gel, felt, bead or bi-color)
  • Deadline: 9 AM (EST) April 18th
  • Winner:  violetsunflower16

April 18th: Pin it to Win it

  • How to enter: Repin any product or product video from Stimtastic's Pinterest 
  • Prize: The item that you repinned
  • Deadline: 9 AM (EST) April 19th
  • Winner:  Merel

April 19th:  Second Chance Drawing

  • How to enter: If you entered the previous week's giveaways, you're already entered in this one! We'll randomly draw one person from all of the completed giveaways during the past week.
  • Prize: Same prize that was up for grabs on the day you entered originally.
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 19th
  • Winner:  elliefint on Tumblr, with second chance win for the haiku giveaway

April 20th:  Cute Baby Animals

  • How to enter: Post a picture of a cute baby animal on today's Facebook post or submit a picture of a cute baby animal to Stimtastic's Tumblr.
  • Prize: A chewable snail, dog fidget necklace, and a snake puzzle stim toy
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) April 21st
  • Winner:  hands-full-of-hospital-bands

April 21st:  Stimming Selfies

  • How to enter: Post a stimming selfie on today's Facebook post or submit a stimming selfie to Stimtastic's Tumblr (tagging us with permission to reblog is good too). Note: can be hands or feet only if you prefer not to include your face.
  • Prize: Choice of Bike Chain bracelet
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) April 22nd
  • Winner: come-into-my-closet

April 22nd:  Favorite Stim Toys on Twitter

  • How to enter: What's your favorite stim toy? Share on twitter with the hashtag #favoritestimtoy to enter today's giveaway.
  • Prize: A surprise package of stim toys based on your favorite.
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 23rd
  • Winner:  Jaden

April 23rd: Favorite Way to Stim on Instagram

  • How to enter: Share a photo of your favorite way to stim or your favorite stim toy/object and tag Stimtastic on Instagram.
  • Prize: A surprise package of stim toys based on your entry.
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 24th
  • Winner: dannyleture

April 24th: Bose QuietComfort 25 Noise Cancelling Headphones Giveaway - Today's giveaway is for a pair of adult-size Bose noise cancelling headphones. Many autistic individuals use noise cancelling headphones to help with sensory overload. If you would benefit from using noise cancelling headphones and do not already own a quality pair, this giveaway is for you.

  • How to enter: Like/Share/Comment on the noise cancelling headphones giveaway announcement post on Facebook or Reblog on Tumblr 
  • Additional rules: (1) US residents only. (2) Entrants should be autistic adults/teens (or their parent/guardian). 
  • Prize: 1 Pair of Bose QuietComfort 25 Noise Cancelling Headphones
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 28th
  • Winner:  Sally Senft

April 25th: YouTube Commenting

  • How to enter: Comment on any video on Stimtastic's Youtube channel - we'll randomly draw one commenter's name at 9 AM on Sunday the 26th
  • Prize: Any pair of handheld chewables
  • Deadline: 9 AM April  26th
  • Winner: Megan Lambert

April 26th:  Second Chance Drawing

  • How to enter: If you entered the previous week's giveaways, you're already entered in this one! We'll randomly draw one person from all of the completed giveaways during the past week.
  • Prize: Same prize that was up for grabs on the day you entered originally.
  • Deadline:  9 AM (EST) April 26th
  • Winner:  soundingonlyatnightasyousleep, on Tumblr, with second chance win for the stimming selfie giveaway

April 27th:  Choose your Own Prize on Facebook

  • How to enter: Comment with the name of the Stimtastic prize you'd like to win (has to be something from our website :-) ).
  • Prize: The item the winner named in their comment
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) April 28th
  • Winner:  Teddy Caddy 

April 28th:  Mystery Giveaway

  • How to enter: This giveaway has an element of skilled guessing, so it will not be announced until it opens on the afternoon of the 28th. Keep an eye on our Tumblr for details!
  • Prize: A felt fidget ball and knitted fidget cord (your choice of colors)
  • Deadline:  Open until someone guesses correctly
  • Winner:  tinypuppykieren

 April 29th:  #reasontohappyflap on Twitter

  • How to enter: What makes you happy stim? Share on twitter with the hashtag #reasontohappyflap to enter today's giveaway.
  • Prize: Any two items of your choice from Stimtastic.co.
  • Deadline: 1 PM (EST) April 30th
  • Winner:  Ian Mahler

April 30th:  Choose your Own Prize on Tumblr

  • How to enter: Reblog the announcement post with the name of the Stimtastic prize you'd like to win (has to be something from our website :-) ).
  • Prize: The item the winner named 
  • Deadline:  1 PM (EST) May 1st
  • Winner:  

Questions? Leave a comment here or use the contact us form.

***A note about deadlines: Doing a giveaway every day is a lot of work so some drawings might not happen right at the announced time. Some drawings might happen later than announced, but we will never draw a winner before the stated deadline. 

Making Weighted Blankets Affordable

Weighted blankets can be a big help for individuals on the autism spectrum, but they can also be prohibitively expensive, especially in adult sizes. Stimtastic has partnered with Isaac Inskeep of Autistic Rabbit to help make weighted blankets more accessible and affordable. 

Free and Subsidized Weighted Blankets 

As part of our commitment to give back to the autistic community, we're setting up a program to help those who can't afford weighted blankets by fully or partially subsidizing the cost of a small number of blankets each month. 

If you (or an individual that you are the parent/guardian of) would benefit from using a weighted blanket but cannot afford to purchase one, we invite you to enter our ongoing weighted blanket giveaway. (See the link for complete details)

 

Affordable Weighted Blankets Custom Made by an Autistic Adult

If you would like to purchase a weighted blanket at a very affordable price, check out Isaac Inskeep's Etsy shop. His custom handmade blankets are priced at a small amount above the cost of materials and your purchase will support an autistic adult who is trying to make weighted blankets more accessible and affordable to those who need them.