Guide to Albuquerque Area Resources for Kids with Differences & Disabilities

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If you have a child with differences and disabilities, you know how difficult it can be to find resources, as well as ways for your child to connect and play with others. Here at ABQ Mom, we want to support families with children of all abilities to find community and have fun.

If we missed a resource, please email [email protected], and we will get it added to this guide.

Special thanks to our partner, Bridges, for sponsoring this resource.

Bridges is central New Mexico’s premier behavioral healthcare provider serving individuals with Autism. New Mexico-owned and operated for over 20 years, Bridges is the state’s first provider devoted to meeting the needs of individuals with Autism and their families.

Bridges gives children and adults with Autism the tools necessary to reach their fullest potential.

A Park Above– A large, beautiful, inclusive park in Rio Rancho. It is easy to navigate for kids of all abilities because it features lots of pavement and ramps. This park even has wheelchair accessible swings!

Albuquerque BioPark

Camp AdventureA summer day-camp for kids with physical disabilities supported by the Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation.

Chatter PaintFun and relaxed painting in an environment where you don’t have be neat and clean!

Daniel Webster Park– This inclusive park is located near Wyoming and Copper. It has large ramps, instead of stairs or ladders, that lead to the top and wind around the play structure.

ExploraExplora features sensory-friendly hours. Check their website for the current schedule!

Live, Laugh, Play Sensory Gym

Nose to Toes Yoga

Sensory-Friendly Movie Nights and Play Dates sponsored by NM Autism Society

Restoration Pizza– Restoration Pizza partners with various local agencies to employ differently-abled individuals. A large percentage of their staff have a physical or mental disability, and the pizza and beer are great!

Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation– Philanthropic organization providing individualized services that bridge the gap for families and children with special needs that enable them to reach their full potential by giving them the same opportunities as children who are typically developing.

Cerebral Palsy Parent Association-This group has regular meetings with guest speakers. Everyone is welcome, including those without a cerebral palsy diagnosis. Dinner and childcare are usually provided and meetings are held at Carrie Tingley Hospital. It’s a great way to meet, learn from, and connect with other families! Email or call (505.272.5296) John Chiramusti, a social worker with UNM, to be added to the email list.

Family Infant Toddler (FIT) Early Intervention AgenciesIf your child is under 3 years of age and you have any concern about your child’s development, Early Intervention is the best place to start. Your child doesn’t need an “official” diagnosis of any kind. They provide assessments, develop a plan, and provide a large range of therapies for free. Finding the resources you need can be overwhelming, but Early Intervention therapists can help connect your family to doctors, therapists and even future schools.

NM Autism Society– Provides advocacy, education, and community building for families affected by autism by meeting monthly and collaborating with organizations around the state on autism programming.

Parents Reaching OutParents Reaching Out (PRO) has a plethora of useful information specific to New Mexico. Download or read their handbooks to help you navigate Individualized Education Plan (IEP) meetings, navigate healthcare and insurance issues, or apply for a waiver program. They also have monthly workshops and webinars.

UNM Center for Development and Disability

Albuquerque Public Schools Developmental Preschools– If your child still benefits from therapy after the age of 3, Albuquerque Public Schools Developmental Preschools provide an accessible, free option. These programs are located at various public schools throughout Albuquerque. They utilize an inclusive model that mixes developmentally-delayed students with typically-developing peers in one classroom.

Albuquerque Sign Language Academy– A tuition-free public charter school with a dual language program (ASL and English).

Designs for Learning Differences Sycamore School–  A private, non-profit year-round school serving students in grades 1-12 with many different learning difficulties

New Mexico School for the Blind and Visually ImpairedA preschool for children ages 3-5 with visual impairments. They offer Early Intervention services, including play dates at their beautiful facility, so you can utilize their services even if your child is younger than 3. They also offer academic programs from kindergarten through 12th grade.

New Mexico School for the Deaf– A preschool for kiddos with diagnosed hearing loss. They also provide Early Intervention services until the age of 6, including deaf mentors who make weekly in-home visits. They also offer academic programs from kindergarten through 12th grade.

Pathways Academy– Through a spirit of collaboration and a passion and commitment to academic and social excellence for children with special educational needs and learning disabilities, Pathways Academy offers a one-of-a-kind school that delivers an innovative approach to evidence-based learning techniques that realize potential and change lives. A K-12 nonprofit, private school for students with a wide variety of special needs. Classes are limited to eight students, and the program runs year-round Monday through Thursday.

Adaptive Sports Program New Mexico– Adaptive Sports Program New Mexico has offered therapeutic recreational activities to children and adults with disabilities. Today, ASPNM proudly offers a wide variety of adaptive sports year round, including skiing, snowboarding, watersports, river rafting, yoga, rock climbing and more. Programs are open to children and adults with disabilities at locations throughout New Mexico.

AYSO Very Important Players Soccer League

Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation– Various adaptive sports, including wheelchair basketball and kayaking

Corrales Soccer Club Top SoccerSoccer league for any child with a physical or mental disability

Keshet Mixed Ability/Adaptive Dance Program

Lobo Little League Challenger Division

Nose to Toes Yoga

Sandia Acrobatic Gymnastics Academy– SAGA offers a “Shining Stars” class for kids with special needs. They also partner with the Autism Learning Collaborative to provide ABA therapy!

Ski Apache Adaptive Sports– Offers learn-to-ski programs for students of all ages with a variety of disabilities in alpine and snowboarding disciplines. A family-oriented program, SAAS includes Spanish-speaking instructors and group programs for schools and rehabilitation centers. Located near Ruidoso, New Mexico at Ski Apache Resort.

Special Olympics New Mexico

Bridges– Bridges’ highly trained clinicians are firm believers in finding success through their comprehensive care model. They believe in a holistic approach to serving their clients and families, through their menu of multi-disciplinary services.

Albuquerque Speech Language Hearing Center– Speech-Language therapy for children. They provide early intervention services, as well as therapy for children older than 3.

Chatterbox Speech Therapy-“Whole-Child” Based Speech-Language Therapy provided through individual and group therapy, as well as trainings for parents and caregivers.

Climbing Tree– Provider of pediatric physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy services in Albuquerque

FUNctional Aquatics Therapy– FUNctional Aquatics Therapy is dedicated to improving the lives of our clients across a wide range of disabilities and physical challenges. By offering innovative and specialized rehabilitation services within a safe, accessible clinic their cohesive team of therapists enables clients to achieve health, wellness and FUNctional life skills to promote independence in their everyday lives.

Indigo Therapy Services– Offers occupational therapy and speech therapy to children. They specialize in helping children that have sensory processing issues, social, emotional and self-care issues, language and articulation issues, and/or fine and gross motor delays

KidsBridge Therapy Services– KidsBridge provides occupational and speech therapy to individuals, especially children from 2-15 years old, with a variety of diagnoses including Cerebral Palsy, Autism, Asperger’s, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Down’s Syndrome, PTSD, Development Coordination Disorder, and other developmental delays through hippotherapy.

Kidpower– Specialize in pediatric intervention and family-centered treatment of children from birth to twenty-one years-of-age. Their therapists have combined experience in sensory integration, neurodevelopmental treatment, language processing, articulation therapy, aquatic therapy, and other developmental approaches.

Laurie Ross-Brennan & Associates Speech Therapists– Offers a variety of treatment to meet your speech, language, and feeding needs. Besides standard speech and language therapy services, they also offer Auditory Integration Training (AIT) and pediatric feeding and swallowing services.

Leaps & Bounds Pediatric Occupational Therapy– Audra Markman, MAOTR/L. Pediatric O.T. with nearly 25 years of experience. Specialties are in sensory integration, executive functioning, gross motor, fine motor and handwriting skills

LifeRoots– Support individuals with disabilities from birth throughout life to self-direct their goals and expectations and increase their Independence through Integrated and inclusive opportunities in a safe environment

Pegasus Therapy-Strives to have purpose and passion while creating balance for everyone through speech therapy, occupational therapy and Applied Behavioral Analysis. With their team of Speech- Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapist, Board Certified Behavior Analysts, and Registered Behavioral Technicians, Pegasus Therapy helps shape bright futures for children with a wide variety of developmental disorders.

Sandia Sunrise Therapy– Provide developmental rehabilitation services to children ranging in ages from 0-21. In addition, our orthopedic rehabilitation services serve adults ranging in age from 15 and older who are recovering from a variety of injuries and conditions.

Skyline Therapy Services in Edgewood- Skyline is the largest hippotherapy provider in the area. They are located in the east mountains and have a covered facility that allows for comfortable riding even on cold or hot days. (505) 281-1811

Wilderwood Equine Therapy– Wilderwood’s flagship program is a unique equine-assisted program for autistic teens (16+) and adults to strengthen self-perception and self-possibility and achieve career and employment goals. The program takes 9 months to complete and is taught over three, 12-week semesters each year: spring, summer, and fall. Wilderwood is located in Peralta, approximately 25 minutes south of Albuquerque.

FAMILY FUN

A Park Above– A large, beautiful, inclusive park in Rio Rancho. It is easy to navigate for kids of all abilities because it features lots of pavement and ramps. This park even has wheelchair accessible swings!

Albuquerque BioPark

Camp AdventureA summer day-camp for kids with physical disabilities supported by the Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation.

Chatter PaintFun and relaxed painting in an environment where you don’t have be neat and clean!

Daniel Webster Park– This inclusive park is located near Wyoming and Copper. It has large ramps, instead of stairs or ladders, that lead to the top and wind around the play structure.

ExploraExplora features sensory-friendly hours. Check their website for the current schedule!

Live, Laugh, Play Sensory Gym

Nose to Toes Yoga

Sensory-Friendly Movie Nights and Play Dates sponsored by NM Autism Society

Restoration Pizza– Restoration Pizza partners with various local agencies to employ differently-abled individuals. A large percentage of their staff have a physical or mental disability, and the pizza and beer are great!

RESOURCES & ORGANIZATIONS

Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation– Philanthropic organization providing individualized services that bridge the gap for families and children with special needs that enable them to reach their full potential by giving them the same opportunities as children who are typically developing.

Cerebral Palsy Parent Association-This group has regular meetings with guest speakers. Everyone is welcome, including those without a cerebral palsy diagnosis. Dinner and childcare are usually provided and meetings are held at Carrie Tingley Hospital. It’s a great way to meet, learn from, and connect with other families! Email or call (505.272.5296) John Chiramusti, a social worker with UNM, to be added to the email list.

Family Infant Toddler (FIT) Early Intervention AgenciesIf your child is under 3 years of age and you have any concern about your child’s development, Early Intervention is the best place to start. Your child doesn’t need an “official” diagnosis of any kind. They provide assessments, develop a plan, and provide a large range of therapies for free. Finding the resources you need can be overwhelming, but Early Intervention therapists can help connect your family to doctors, therapists and even future schools.

NM Autism Society– Provides advocacy, education, and community building for families affected by autism by meeting monthly and collaborating with organizations around the state on autism programming.

Parents Reaching OutParents Reaching Out (PRO) has a plethora of useful information specific to New Mexico. Download or read their handbooks to help you navigate Individualized Education Plan (IEP) meetings, navigate healthcare and insurance issues, or apply for a waiver program. They also have monthly workshops and webinars.

UNM Center for Development and Disability

SCHOOLS

Albuquerque Public Schools Developmental Preschools– If your child still benefits from therapy after the age of 3, Albuquerque Public Schools Developmental Preschools provide an accessible, free option. These programs are located at various public schools throughout Albuquerque. They utilize an inclusive model that mixes developmentally-delayed students with typically-developing peers in one classroom.

Albuquerque Sign Language Academy– A tuition-free public charter school with a dual language program (ASL and English).

Designs for Learning Differences Sycamore School–  A private, non-profit year-round school serving students in grades 1-12 with many different learning difficulties

New Mexico School for the Blind and Visually ImpairedA preschool for children ages 3-5 with visual impairments. They offer Early Intervention services, including play dates at their beautiful facility, so you can utilize their services even if your child is younger than 3. They also offer academic programs from kindergarten through 12th grade.

New Mexico School for the Deaf– A preschool for kiddos with diagnosed hearing loss. They also provide Early Intervention services until the age of 6, including deaf mentors who make weekly in-home visits. They also offer academic programs from kindergarten through 12th grade.

Pathways Academy– Through a spirit of collaboration and a passion and commitment to academic and social excellence for children with special educational needs and learning disabilities, Pathways Academy offers a one-of-a-kind school that delivers an innovative approach to evidence-based learning techniques that realize potential and change lives. A K-12 nonprofit, private school for students with a wide variety of special needs. Classes are limited to eight students, and the program runs year-round Monday through Thursday.

SPORTS

Adaptive Sports Program New Mexico– Adaptive Sports Program New Mexico has offered therapeutic recreational activities to children and adults with disabilities. Today, ASPNM proudly offers a wide variety of adaptive sports year round, including skiing, snowboarding, watersports, river rafting, yoga, rock climbing and more. Programs are open to children and adults with disabilities at locations throughout New Mexico.

AYSO Very Important Players Soccer League

Carrie Tingley Hospital Foundation– Various adaptive sports, including wheelchair basketball and kayaking

Corrales Soccer Club Top SoccerSoccer league for any child with a physical or mental disability

Keshet Mixed Ability/Adaptive Dance Program

Lobo Little League Challenger Division

Nose to Toes Yoga

Sandia Acrobatic Gymnastics Academy– SAGA offers a “Shining Stars” class for kids with special needs. They also partner with the Autism Learning Collaborative to provide ABA therapy!

Ski Apache Adaptive Sports– Offers learn-to-ski programs for students of all ages with a variety of disabilities in alpine and snowboarding disciplines. A family-oriented program, SAAS includes Spanish-speaking instructors and group programs for schools and rehabilitation centers. Located near Ruidoso, New Mexico at Ski Apache Resort.

Special Olympics New Mexico

THERAPY PROVIDERS

Bridges– Bridges’ highly trained clinicians are firm believers in finding success through their comprehensive care model. They believe in a holistic approach to serving their clients and families, through their menu of multi-disciplinary services.

Albuquerque Speech Language Hearing Center– Speech-Language therapy for children. They provide early intervention services, as well as therapy for children older than 3.

Chatterbox Speech Therapy-“Whole-Child” Based Speech-Language Therapy provided through individual and group therapy, as well as trainings for parents and caregivers.

Climbing Tree– Provider of pediatric physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy services in Albuquerque

FUNctional Aquatics Therapy– FUNctional Aquatics Therapy is dedicated to improving the lives of our clients across a wide range of disabilities and physical challenges. By offering innovative and specialized rehabilitation services within a safe, accessible clinic their cohesive team of therapists enables clients to achieve health, wellness and FUNctional life skills to promote independence in their everyday lives.

Indigo Therapy Services– Offers occupational therapy and speech therapy to children. They specialize in helping children that have sensory processing issues, social, emotional and self-care issues, language and articulation issues, and/or fine and gross motor delays

KidsBridge Therapy Services– KidsBridge provides occupational and speech therapy to individuals, especially children from 2-15 years old, with a variety of diagnoses including Cerebral Palsy, Autism, Asperger’s, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Down’s Syndrome, PTSD, Development Coordination Disorder, and other developmental delays through hippotherapy.

Kidpower– Specialize in pediatric intervention and family-centered treatment of children from birth to twenty-one years-of-age. Their therapists have combined experience in sensory integration, neurodevelopmental treatment, language processing, articulation therapy, aquatic therapy, and other developmental approaches.

Laurie Ross-Brennan & Associates Speech Therapists– Offers a variety of treatment to meet your speech, language, and feeding needs. Besides standard speech and language therapy services, they also offer Auditory Integration Training (AIT) and pediatric feeding and swallowing services.

Leaps & Bounds Pediatric Occupational Therapy– Audra Markman, MAOTR/L. Pediatric O.T. with nearly 25 years of experience. Specialties are in sensory integration, executive functioning, gross motor, fine motor and handwriting skills

LifeRoots– Support individuals with disabilities from birth throughout life to self-direct their goals and expectations and increase their Independence through Integrated and inclusive opportunities in a safe environment

Pegasus Therapy-Strives to have purpose and passion while creating balance for everyone through speech therapy, occupational therapy and Applied Behavioral Analysis. With their team of Speech- Language Pathologists, Occupational Therapist, Board Certified Behavior Analysts, and Registered Behavioral Technicians, Pegasus Therapy helps shape bright futures for children with a wide variety of developmental disorders.

Sandia Sunrise Therapy– Provide developmental rehabilitation services to children ranging in ages from 0-21. In addition, our orthopedic rehabilitation services serve adults ranging in age from 15 and older who are recovering from a variety of injuries and conditions.

Skyline Therapy Services in Edgewood- Skyline is the largest hippotherapy provider in the area. They are located in the east mountains and have a covered facility that allows for comfortable riding even on cold or hot days. (505) 281-1811

Wilderwood Equine Therapy– Wilderwood’s flagship program is a unique equine-assisted program for autistic teens (16+) and adults to strengthen self-perception and self-possibility and achieve career and employment goals. The program takes 9 months to complete and is taught over three, 12-week semesters each year: spring, summer, and fall. Wilderwood is located in Peralta, approximately 25 minutes south of Albuquerque.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Hi! I ran across your website through the FaceBook group “Autism Support Group – Albuquerque, NM.” I wanted to make sure you are aware of Pathways Academy here in Albuquerque. We are a K-12 nonprofit, private school for students with a wide variety of special needs. Classes are limited to eight students, so we don’t have more than an 8:1 pupil to teacher ratio. The only common theme between our students is that they have failed to thrive in a previous learning situation. We would appreciate being listed as a school in your Guide to Albuquerque Area Resources for Kids with Differences & Disabilities.
    Also, I thought you should also know about Designs for Learning Differences (DLD) Sycamore which also serves K-12 students. I don’t have any detailed info on them.
    Please email or call me if you’d like more info on Pathways Academy. 505-341-0555. Just ask for Mr. Jim. I’m the principal. Thanks!

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