ADULT & FAMILIESChildren & YouthAutism Respite and Training   


There is an acute need for providers in our region who can provide quality behavioral respite programming, especially providers who serve children with autism.

There is also a need for more expertise and training in serving children. This is coupled with a need for increased cultural competency.

St. Louis County received a grant from DHS specific to respite services for individuals with autism! We have identified this as a very specific need for children in St. Louis County and are working to:

1. Develop a training curriculum/toolkit and provide training to respite service providers.
2. Increase the network of providers that have training in ASD in order to better meet the current needs in the community through person centered and culturally competent service delivery.  

What is Respite?

Respite is…
Short-term care services provided to give a parent or caregiver a break.
 Respite programs provide planned short-term and time-limited breaks for families and other unpaid care givers of children and adults with autism in order to support and maintain the primary care giving relationship. Respite should also provide a positive experience for the person receiving care. The term "short break" is often used to describe the service.
Respite can happen in a family’s home or in a different provider site (home) in northern and southern St. Louis County.


How do I sign up for respite services?

Contact your county case manager. If you do not have a county case manager, contact Laura Birnbaum (contact information below).

Trainings Available:

Currently there is a free 24 hour class (over 6 – 8 weeks) open to parents, caregivers, respite providers, teachers and paraprofessionals. The training is called ‘Positive Support Basics for Children with Autism’ and is also applicable for adults with autism.


To find out session dates/times and to register click on here: (PDF registration form)

Mailing Address: 320 West Second Street, 7E. Duluth, MN 55802

phone: (218) 726-2492

facebook Check out our autism respite grant Facebook Page!

Thank you to the stakeholder group who informs and guides our work: Amber Madoll, Jessica Lindberg, Erik Sather, Dr. Jessica Schilling, Dr. Don Ferguson, Dr. Kelsey Berg and Mary Truscott with Fond du Lac Human Services.