Saturday, September 25, 2010

Amy Gould Caraballo’s True Colours

Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo
Amy Gould Caraballo is a mother and advocate to a son with Asperger's Syndrome. After dealing with the local school district's inability to educate her son, Amy has become a devoted advocate to all children with special needs.  She is her son's educational coach for his Cyber School program through the Pennsylvania Virtual Charter School, a public charter.

Since November 2009, Amy Caraballo has been writing for the as the Pittsburgh Special Education Examiner where she reports on Special Education issues as they pertain to the Western Pennsylvania region. Recently, she has started the Disability Advocacy Network of Mercer County (DANMC).

DANMC is a registered business in Pennsylvania working on Not for Profit status. DANMC provides free services to those in and around Mercer County, Pennsylvania. Currenlty, Amy Gould Caraballo is seeking advocates and board members who wish to volunteer their time to work with DANMC. If you are interested, visit for more information.

In the past, Amy Gould Caraballo has worked with the following advocacy groups:
  • The Autistic Women's Network (AWN)
  • Advocates Against Fraud in Advocacy (AAFA)
  • ARC of Pennsylvania Systems and Governmental Affairs
  • Early Childhood and Education subcommittee member
  • Pennsylvania Gaskin Settlement Agreement Overall Implementation Committee
  • PA Right to Education Local Task Force
  • Green Grannies and Friends for Clean Air
  • Healthy Kids committee
  • Mothers of Asthmatics Member (AANMA)
  • American Lung Association Parent Outreach
  • Pennsylvania Families Together for Autism
  • Autism Society of America Member
  • Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN)
  • Families Against Restraint and Seclusion (national)
In her spare time she enjoys singing with the Shenango Valley Chorale and participates in community theatre.

Amy Gould Caraballo, Amy Caraballo, Amy C. AWN, Autism Women's Network, AAFA, Advocates against fraud in advocacy, ASAN, Autistic Self Advocacy Network, Advocacy, aspergers, autism, amy-caraballo, amy-gould-caraballo, philanthropy, When good advocates go bad, ravingmotherfromhell, raving mother from hell, caraballo, amy

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

When Trolls Attack, Throw Bear

The game by Will Crowther's and Don Woods's called ADVENTURE was one of the first RPGs on computer written in Fortran. It was all the rage on college campuses in the 1970's. And thanks to

my Facebook buddy Phil, I've decided that this is indeed a good approach for online serial trolls – just Throw Bear.

throw bear:The bear lumbers toward the troll, who lets out a startled shriek and scurries away. The bear soon gives up the pursuit and wanders back.

Now of course, I don't have a pet bear that I'll literally throw at those who intend to harm or defame others in the name of personal gain. But I got to thinking of how funny that visual would be; here catch this bear. Suddenly, the whole thing seems dang funny and I'm laughing it off.

So the next time someone threatens or posts blatant lies about you, just think about throwing them that bear. Guaranteed to make you smile.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

AAFA, Advocates Against Fraud in Advocacy

On the coattails of Dave Wilde, I thought I'd give some information about AAFA (Advocates Against Fraud in Advocacy). As an investigative member of this team, I am very vested in outing fraudulent activities of “so called” advocates who take the money and run and even blackmail their clients into silence.

For years, I've watched some of these suspicious people taunt and torture innocent families. Finally, after reading a publication online about one known “scammer” I found it time to really do something about it. After speaking with a few other legitimate advocates, we decided to form an organization. More can be found at:

AAFA does not formally investigate anyone. We aren't police or detectives. We use our Internet know-how and informally interview people who are associated with suspected frauds. We run background checks and attempt to match up claims with real documentation. In the end, if we suspect that the claim of fraud is true, we turn over all our findings to the proper authorities. After that, there is little we can and will do unless the authorities call upon us for more information.

We do not take on every case. We've had requests by those who dislike someone and want their name smeared. When we find evidence of flame wars, we walk away. But if an advocate is out there making grandiose claims about their conquests, that's where we come in.

What can you do to protect yourself?
  • Most real advocates do not “advertise” their cases. If an advocate is tooting their own horn, you probably want to do some research and verify that this person is for real.

  • In today's social network world, its very easy for scammers to take on multiple personalities claiming to be clients or victims of advocates. Look for real proof – not just someones words. If the advocate or victim won't send you legitimate proof, it's probably a lie.

  • Additionally, look to organizations who have legitimate licenses with their State to do business. If an organization doesn't have a Federal Tax ID (in the US), they are likely not very legitimate. Tax IDs are public information and can be requested from the IRS.

  • Lastly, if you aren't sure, you can request AAFA to do some research. We do not charge for this service. And while we are in the process of becoming Not for Profit, we only hope to obtain grants to cover the costs of our research.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Perspectives Anthology launches August 22, 2010

Perspectives Anthology launches today - Long Island autism |

Marc Rosen
Long Island Autism Examiner

Over the past several months, two men gathered, selected, edited, and compiled poetry from over fifty poets, from three continents, to bring forth the first-ever anthology specifically dedicated to poetry about autism and other neurological, psychological, social, and communicative disabilities. Today, that effort has finally come to fruition, and Perspectives Anthology: Poetry Concerning Autism and Other Disabilities is now available for purchase online. The editors, when asked, expressed their excitement and exhaustion, but hope that people see the message they have attempted to put forth with this work, as they said in their mission statement, " matter what our differences, we are all human." The anthology will also have a book tour from September through to December, consisting of live readings from the anthology by the poets who wrote the works as well as book signing opportunities, with the first event being on September 16th at Dowling College. To purchase your own copy, you can attend one of the tour events, or see the link below: