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Search and Rescue for Autism

What is SARA?

Search and Rescue for Autism is a project by Autism Canada to create training materials for responders in Search & Rescue, as well as resources for the Autism community. This project will has resources and materials for everyone from community members and caregivers to Responders, plus more! 

What does it mean to be 'Lost'? 

What if you don’t really know what 'lost' feels like? You can look around and see what 'lost' looks like!

Our What is Lost? was created to be shared to learn what 'lost' looks like, even if you don’t feel lost.

View the PDF comic here.

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Visual supports & stories

What are Visual Supports & Stories?
Visual supports and stories are short, simple stories that describe a situation and how your child is expected to behave in that situation. They are meant to guide and direct your child’s responses to new situations.

How do I use the Visual Supports & Stories?
The visual supports and stories are meant to prepare your child for a given situation. Thus, they should be reviewed prior to participating in the situation. We recommend reading the story once through without stopping with your child. Then, read it again and stop and point out a few important points. Do this numerous times and in different contexts prior to entering the situation written in the social story. You can ask them simple questions about the social story (e.g., where should we put our garbage?)


Reading a story will help prepare them, but you still need to teach the skill embedded in the visual support directly and create a lot of opportunities for practice. For example, when reviewing how to act around wildlife, practice in a park or your backyard after you read the social story. You can also highlight the importance of throwing away garbage in a labelled garbage can in your home before entering a national park.

Don’t forget to praise and reward your child for practicing the new skills they are learning!

Download each Visual Support & Story 

below to create your own!

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