Praise for The Handbook

“Singer’s book offers parents thoughtful guidance with 

  a healthy dose of honesty and optimism”

       Ed Matthews,

“The Special Needs Parent Handbook is a simple, easy 

  to read book offering practical advice”

       Lisa Borges, The Doug Flutie, Jr. Foundation for Autism

“Timely, well written, practical ... this slim gem should 

  be on the shelf of every library”

       Julianne J. Smith, Library Journal


Great reviews from Library Journal and the American Library Association Booklist

Read on Kindle, iPad & iPhone

100% of proceeds from all sales support Advocacy 4 All - thank you!

More rave reviews from around the world:

“Congratulations on The Special Needs Parent Handbook. It looks like it will be a valuable life-line to

many parents in the same or similar situation.  Your writing is candid and clear, humorous and realistic.” 

Keren, USA

What I liked most is that as I was reading the excerpts, I felt as though I was hearing my own thoughts. As a

mother of a 5 year old son with Autism, it was refreshing to read “plain language”.  Most of the books that I

have read is very medical, factual and technical.  This book was as if it was written in my own words.

BRAVO for talking to parents as parents, not doctors, therapists, etc.

Annette, Coordinator, Family Health Information Center, USA

“This was EXTREMELY helpful to me.  I have a special needs child myself and I have been trying to
get some ideas on how to include him in activities with other children.”

Bonnie, Canada


“I recently read Jonathan Singer's book and it was a refreshing and uplifting piece that was not the typical

financial guide for parents with a special needs child.  He addresses the most difficult issues with a special

light-hearted flair - an informal, easy to read how-to-book. This book will empower parents to make the

practical decisions necessary to provide the optimal upbringing for their special needs child and at the same

time develop a deep relationship with their spouse and make it inclusive and special for the other children.”

David Halper CLU/CHFC and partner of Halper Rawiszer Financial Group, USA

“Thank you for your encouraging words.  They were just what I needed to hear today.  God bless.”  

Claudia, NZ

“This information was very helpful thank you so much.  I am a young single parent of 2 and my youngest

has downs and its been hard”. 

Miranda, USA

“I especially liked the strategies for keeping the family together.”

Taya, Canada

“I am a doctor in the UK working in primary care. From time to time I have a look around the web to see if

there is anything that would be beneficial to the children I see. I thought that it was a really wonderful

account ….  I really liked your friendly, readable style, and I am sure that other parents would find your

comments helpful.”

Dr. Gill, UK

“Keeping the Family Together was very interesting.  I was wondering if I could put it in a newsletter I send

out to parents who are raising children with special needs.”

Cheryl, USA

“Thank you so much ... Our marriage is really feeling the strain at times and this article has helped a lot.”

Jo, UK

Review from The Academy of Special Needs Planners - 6/7/2010

Handbook for Parents Offers Good Advice, Helps Worthy Cause

In 2002, Jonathan Singer, whose daughter Rebecca has a genetic disorder that causes autism tendencies, drove his family cross-

country to raise money for autism research and education. The family raised almost $100,000, which they donated to autism-

related programs. Now Singer has written a helpful and insightful handbook for parents of children with special needs and he is

donating the proceeds to Advocacy for All, a charity he set up that helps parents become more effective advocates for their

children with special needs.

The Special Needs Parent Handbook is a well-written, down-to-earth guidebook that reads like a conversation with a good friend.

In it, Singer offers tips for interacting with a child with special needs that he has learned through his first-hand experience of

raising both a child with special needs as well and one without. However, The Special Needs Parent Handbook also goes to

great lengths to emphasize the need for parents to take care of their personal needs as well. The opening chapter, "Keeping the

Family Together," discusses ways for parents to spend more time with each other and their children without special needs, and it

also talks about the importance of being there for friends who do not have children with special needs. According to Singer, these

relationships with family and friends provide the essential support for families of children with special needs.

Singer's advocacy tips fall into several categories, including chapters on finding doctors who are not only intelligent but

empathetic, dealing with school systems that do not want to provide benefits through special education, and working with financial

and legal planners and insurance companies. In a particularly helpful section, Singer discusses how to integrate a child with

special needs into the general community, and he offers suggestions for teaching children and parents without special needs

about a child's condition without sounding shrill or patronizing. In fact, throughout the book, Singer's conversational tone rarely

reaches a fever pitch -- you can tell that he is completely committed to his work without resorting to lecturing. When you reach the

end of The Special Needs Parent Handbook, you will feel like you gained 15 years of practical knowledge in a matter of hours.

At the moment, The Special Needs Parent Handbook is available as a download from Singer's Web site with a $10 donation to

Advocacy for All. Readers can also purchase an ebook version for the Kindle or iPhone. To read excerpts from the book, or to

purchase a copy, click here.

Harry S. Margolis, Academy of Special Needs Planners, USA

“Very enlightening. Stumbled on to your website accidentally, whilst searching for info on the disabled in the workplace.”

Florence, South Africa

“Great book – would love to be able to use this as part of the work I do with social care students in Ireland to understand the

needs of families with special needs children.

Keep up the good work!”

Jennifer, Ireland

“Thank you for writing the Special Needs Handbook. In Chapter One, "Keeping the Family together", it is evident the author lives

this journey everyday, has done his research, and uses all this experience, wisdom from various sources and data for supporting

special needs families--a first things first approach to supporting special needs children.  With this book, a parent who is on the

special needs journey gets a buddy to help add perspective--like a tourist guide. This tourist guide is holistic and honest, a gem in

'Holland'--and so essential to healthy progress for everyone in the family. Many perspectives for keeping a good attitude and

uplifted spirits are in the book, but always with an honest look at reality and acceptance of the feelings everyone's too afraid to

speak of -- for fear of judgement, isolation and rejection from society at large.  Get the book--get relief--get an honest guide to '


Deborah, USA

“Hi, Jonathan.  This has been really helpful as we are learning how to parent two special needs children. I have started an email

support group and yahoo group for parents of gifted and special needs children, and I have forwarded this excerpt to the groups.”

Marcie, USA

“I think your book is amazing.  I have worked with special students for 19 years and only once did I encounter any in servicing

relating to family.    I don't think anyone other than parents like yourselves know the commitment and lack of help available to

parents like yourselves.   I will recommend we purchase a copy of your book for the Unit in which I presently work.”

Robyn, Australia

“Every family who has a Child with a Disability needs one of these.”

Bronwyn, Australia

Administration Officer, Department of Communities

Disability Community Care Services

Far Northern Queensland Region

“What a Resource!  I've only read the intro but it reminded me that it is more than okay to keep advocating for our special need

daughters, even in the areas such as health and education where sometimes as parents we think these systems might have the

expertise.  Thank you.”

Jo, Australia

“GREAT BOOK (so far). I am glad you wrote this book and look forward to finishing it. I just read the beginning and LOVED the

Holland/Italy analogy. I read that to my older two kids and they liked it too. They said they wouldn't trade their brothers but they

"wish they were more Italian", which has a double meaning since the girls are half Italian but the boys are half Russian (different

Dads). LOL!   And I am glad you mentioned single moms a little too. Its nice to see a mention about our struggles. Its not easy

when one parent decides they can't handle the stress and bails out on the family-and its even worse when its because you have

kids with "issues". A lot of people tell me they just can't imagine dealing with my life and I tell them all its not up to me to decide

when my plate is full, its up to God. :) Although I do pray a lot for some free space on that plate.  Good luck on all that you are

doing, God bless you all, and keep up the fight!!!”

Sam, USA


“I LIKED THE ENTIRE BOOK.....REALLY!  As the parent of a son with autism, I did a lot of your suggestions, just as common

sense and a positive attitude.  BUT, it is hard for many families to do that and sometimes hard for me.  I'm so glad this book is out.

  Even though my son is 17, I would still like to read it, especially the part about keeping the family together.  This could be very

helpful because we have a typical, advanced, gifted 10-year old son.  The vacation information is especially helpful, more so now

that my husband is laid off.  We all need a vacation, no matter how short.  THANK YOU FOR WRITING THIS BOOK.  I wish it

would have been written sooner, but I'm glad it is now out.”

Lenore, USA

“I really enjoyed reading the excerpt "How To Keep the Family Together" I loved all the things that your family did and do to keep

your family together. My family does not have those resources, but maybe one day we will. It was very encouraging to read. I

loved reading it!”

Jennifer, USA

“I read your book excerpts and they are good.  The tone is positive but not fluff. I appreciate it because life is hard not fluffy.  I

have always been a single mom but I applaud that you have learned how to hold your relationship and family together. That is

great!  My 9 year old son is on the spectrum.  We have been through so much.  I am an advocate for my son.  I have educated

myself on insurance, IEP, laws and health issues. I love my son more than life itself, and because of this I have become a force

to be reckoned with.  May God bless and keep all of you.  Kind Regards.”

Deanna, USA

“From what I've  seen so far, this looks like a great book to have.  Can't wait to see the whole book!  Thanks for your great work,

it will help not only my family but many, many more.

Liz, USA

“THANK YOU!!! I really appreciate reading about other parents who are where I am (and can't wait to read every word of the book

when it come out). It is a comfort to hear stories of other parents who found themselves unexpectedly landing in 'Holland.' This

morning, in fact, was one of those mornings, medically, and I needed an arm on my shoulder... thank you for providing that with

the excerpt.”

Rhea, USA

“I do not have a child w/ a disability, however, I have worked with children and their families for many years in my career as a

nurse and also currently work with a local not-for-profit group that ministers to families that have children w/ special abilities.  I am

impressed by a book such as this so that I can try to see from the other side and help in any way that I can.... This book looks like

it may be a way for me to help know what to offer in the way of assistance.  Thank-you for the opportunity to share.”

Becky, USA

“I love the book!  Very motivating and inspirational yet practical.  There is something in there for everyone.  My favorite chapter is

about "Keeping the Family Together."  At times, we are so close as a family unit but the unknown can often cause strain.  We

need more references/books that really put things into perspective.  We often are too quick to judge or set lower expectations for

our children with special needs, when in fact the truth of the matter is...the higher the goal you set the more they will achieve.  My

son is constantly exceeding my expectations.  A book like this continues to remind me just how lucky I am.  Thank you for writing


Rosemarie, USA

“I love what you are doing with your kids. The comparison of Italy and Holland is right on. Keep sending out these positive vibes

and sharing with families still struggling day by day. I look forward to hearing more as I read the rest of your book.”


“I loved the excerpt especially the part with the poem, Welcome to Holland. It reminds me of how wonderful my son is even if he

is not Italy, No especially because he is not Italy. Everyone else is Italy but he is a priceless and rare treasure.”

Alina, USA

“I am completely in awe of families and parents like you. It is such an overwhelming and daunting task to raise a child with special

needs. My son has autism and at this very point I am overwhelmed again trying to figure out a summer plan for him. Every year

we get to this place of searching the internet and filling out applications for aid to go to specialized camps ( which are much more

expensive than regular camps).  I was pleasantly surprised at the realistic approach that you have taken with your book and the

analogy about a trip to Holland. That is so true. I love my child with everything that is in me however I still have those weepy days

wondering if he will ever have friends.  I was uplifted to see your positive approach to figuring this whole thing out because I don’t

believe that anyone is fully prepared for all of the responsibilities involved. Because our diagnoses is Autism we are participating

in biomedical treatment in addition to therapy and managing that requires another skill set.  From the excepts that I have read, I

think the book is great for people that do not have to be caregivers of special needs as well as those that are . The stories are

interesting and easy to follow, it is not clinical nor intimidating. I think that different audiences will find it helpful and useful.  Keep

up the outstanding work.”

Kim, USA

“Wow, I have to say that what I have read so far, I liked!  I want to read more!!!!   The one thing that I have found, and I believe

you found....the secrete of thriving as a family with special needs children, is.....accept and even embrace the special need. 

Make it a 'normal' part of your life.  If you fight against it, you give it power, it can control you.  If you embrace it, make it a part of

your life and work with it (not against it) you then control it, it does not control you.  Go out to the zoo with a contingency plan in

place. In our home NOTHING is set in stone.  We live a very fluid life.  I feel so bad for those who have always lived on a

schedule, walking the straight and narrow.......they are the ones that struggle with a special family, wandering outside the line is

our norm, we just stop and smell the flowers along the way.  It sounds like you do too.   Can't wait to read what else you have to


Jeannie, USA

“I just read an excerpt from you book.  It was the chapter on taking special needs kids out in public.  I think you did a good job

with it.  I like that you talk about not really caring about what others think and concentrating on your daughter’s needs.  I also love

the part about enlisting other kids help.  I have two kids with autism and going out in public can definitely be a challenge and it is

most definitely never dull. LOL.  Enlisting the help of other kids is an amazing strategy.  Most people are thrilled to be given a way to help someone with special needs, and when they do they become that person’s advocate.  I am so glad you’ve written this book.  When my kids

were younger, I wanted answers about how to navigate the world with my kids.  I could never find a resource that gave practical

advice and real world examples.  Your book seems to do just that, and will be a real lifesaver to parents new to the world of

special needs.  I think us veterans will benefit as well.”

Janice, USA

“I enjoyed what I read and feel it will help others work with students with special needs. Good luck with this project!”

Christopher, USA


Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology

“Wow! I am so excited to read more. My daughter is 10 year old named Rebecca and they sound so similar. I am forming a family to family network in my area and desperately need your advice. This is great timing for us. Thank you for investing your time to improve lives of

children like ours.”

Kim, USA

“What I read was very informational and looks like a great resource for families with kids with special needs.  I read the portion

that talked about hiring a babysitter or help.  Thanks so much for putting this book together and I am so glad that someone is

working with advocacy and support for families with kids with special needs.”

Rebecca, USA

“Awesome reading. Wish this had been available 3 years ago when I was really struggling. I like your writing style, down to earth,

easy to read, realistic as can be, and the humor is great. Just what we need to make it through another day. Thanks, great book.”

Patti, USA

“Thank you for this resource-great for new families to autism and ones on down the road in their journey.”

Sherry, USA

“I just finished reading some of your excerpts and I am very impressed with your book.  As a Mom of two children on the spectrum

,  along with two neuro typical children, I can relate to everything you have written.  SO much so that along with how you have

made a commitment to your life to help others.  Congratulations!”

Kathy, USA

“I think the tips and strategies in this book will be excellent to try with my own daughter!” 

Diane, USA

“This book has some good tips. Keep up the excellent work.”

Suzanne, USA

“I wanted to let you know that I think your handbook is invaluable to parents who have children with special needs as well as


Carolyn, USA

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