Discovery Museum To Offer Virtual Workshop on Grandparenting a Child with Autism on March 18

What: “Grandparenting a Child with Autism: Roles, Responsibilities, and Supports"
Who: Charlie Washburn, retired Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, of VSA Massachusetts and  grandfather of two boys on the autism spectrum, and Donna Danielewski, Senior Director of the Carl and Ruth Shapiro Family National Center for Accessible Media at WGBH and mother of a child with autism.
When: Thursday, March 18, 7:00pm to 8:30pm
Where: Online via Zoom Webinar
Cost:  Free with preregistration at; a $5 suggested donation appreciated

This workshop will explore the lush landscape of grandparenting children on the Autism Spectrum. We’ll explore the unique role grandparents—and others who fill that sort of supporting role—can play in a family with a child on the spectrum. We will share some of the unique joys and puzzling challenges that come with the job. We’ll discuss the grandparent’s chief responsibilities, special opportunities, and some ready resources to help out, including children’s museums like the Discovery Museum. We will also specifically address issues raised by participants in a pre-workshop survey (look for the link in your registration acknowledgement email).

Presenters, Donna Danielewski and Charles Washburn, are colleagues with years of experience working together with Cultural Access New England, a group formed to support museum and other cultural organization professionals working to make their programs more inclusive of people with the full range of human abilities and disabilities. They come to this conversation as a parent and grandparent with children on the spectrum.

Upcoming 2021 Virtual Speaker Series events:

All 2021 events will be presented virtually via Zoom webinar, from 7:00pm to 8:30pm, and are free and open to the public. Registration for all events is open now on the Museum’s website at

Wednesday, April 28, “The Addiction Inoculation: Raising Healthy Kids in a Culture of Dependence,” with Jessica Lahey, New York Times best-selling author.
Tuesday, June 1, “Addressing Bias in Children’s Literature,” with Grace Lin, New York Times best-selling author and illustrator.
Just added: Thursday, September 23, “Youth Voices in Climate Change,” with Varshini Prakash, founder of The Sunrise Movement
Thursday, October 21, “An Empowered Life for Children with Disabilities,” with Sara Minkara, Founder, Empowerment Through Integration

These free and open-to-the-public events are made possible by Lead sponsor Foundation for MetroWest, and Investor sponsor Enterprise Bank. Thank you.

About Discovery Museum

Discovery Museum is a hands-on museum that blends science, nature, and play, inspiring families to explore and learn together. The museum and its Discovery Woods accessible outdoor nature playscape and 550sf treehouse blend the best of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math) learning on a beautiful 4.5-acre campus abutting 180 acres of conservation land in Acton, MA, about 20 miles west of Boston. Originally founded in 1982 and expanded to two museums in 1987, the museum reopened in a single, 16,000sf accessible building after a complete renovation and expansion in early 2018. Hands-on, open-ended exhibits developed by professional educators inspire curiosity and exploration, providing a fun and engaging experience for children and adults to discover their world together. Serving families and schools from towns throughout the region, the museum is devoted to informal education that enhances classroom learning. Discovery Museum is committed to accessibility, and is a proud recipient of the 2017 Massachusetts Commonwealth Award, the only winner in the Access category, and a 2018 LEAD® Community Asset Award from The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. For more information please visit Discovery Museum is a community-supported non-profit organization.

Discovery Museum programming is supported in part by a grant from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.