ASCEND Professional Events

1) Individual Therapy with Parent Support and Training

Therapy will be available both in-person and tele-health to meet your family's medical and comfort needs. CFATC's unique therapy approach treats a wide range of childhood emotional, behavioral, and social challenges. We help clients at four levels: 1) Teaching CBT-inspired coping skills, 2) Unblocking stuck emotions with creative art-play and verbal therapy, 3) Forming and practicing relationships with healthy attachment and boundaries, and 4) Training caregivers in supportive structure and strategies. Info about individual therapy

2) The Art of Friendship Social-Coping Program @Home

The Art of Friendship Social-Coping Program @Home counteracts social distancing
isolation and skill regression.

It isn't safe to gather in groups just yet, but our social skills group therapists innovated creative ways to make virtual social skills therapy engaging and successful. Visit our social skills site.


 Note from Hill Top Prep School

I am reaching out to let you know that there is financial assistance available for families who may be on the fence about considering private school/Hill Top Prep because of the cost. We appreciate your support of Hill Top Prep and if you have any questions about our program, please feel free to reach out. Thank you for continuing to send us extraordinary students
Kind regards,

Program Description

Hill Top Profile

Upcoming Special Needs Zoom Workshops

 Our complimentary workshops are focused on empowering and educating families who have dependents with special needs giving them clear, actionable information that can be used to understand and build a responsible financial lifestyle. Our small and interactive seminars will be led by popular financial speaker, Pat Bergmaier, and will provide a comfortable setting in which attendees can learn how to take control of their present and future financial planning. As a follow-up, individual meetings may be scheduled to focus on your personal financial situation without distraction.

Please feel free to share with others and find us on Facebook to be kept up to date on new events and workshops too! Send your questions to Pat Bergmaier.

Wednesday 9/23/20 12:00 Noon - details and Zoom invite to follow!

Wednesday 9/30/200 7:00 PM - PA Family Network - details to follow!

If you and your group of friends/families you know want to do something just for your group - please reach out! School district employees, therapy providers, supports coordinators, etc interested in hosting a workshop for your families - let us know! Should your employer be offering something similar?-- Please reach out to Pat!

Remember, life will continue after this. The opportunities being presented right now with the stock market, tax law changes and Covid-19 related insurance changes (not good ones) really call for the need to plan NOW. Please do not hesitate to call to schedule an initial meeting via Zoom. 

Stay well!


 Kristina Vacha's Groups

Kristina Vacha, Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW, LBS, MSS, MA 

Below is detailed information on groups I am offering this fall.  As you may recall, at the beginning of the Covid-19 quarantine, I lowered session fees to ensure everyone could access my groups, however I have made the decision to adjust the fees beginning in September. The Group Therapy will have a monthly fee of $120 for four sessions or a  per session fee of $40. You will have the option to pay $120 at the first session of the month or to pay $40 per individual session.  
As you know, it is my philosophy to offer a sliding scale on an as needed basis. If anyone is facing hardship regarding fees please let me know.  
I am also expanding Virtual Social Groups and will be offering a Social Distance Walk at a local park. The Virtual Book Club is free and fees will vary for the other groups. I am very excited to collaborate with local artist Christine Burke and offer a Virtual Paint Night.  I will keep you updated on social group details and also provide information about them on my Meetup page at
If you are a parent working from home, you should be able to set up online therapy with your regular therapist. If you don't have a regular therapist, your employer may be able to match you with a therapist providing online therapy through your Employee Assistance Program.
All groups promote increased understanding of living as an adult on the spectrum, address adult issues like employment, independent living, relationships and dating, and provide peer support. 
If you feel you need support and are not sure how to proceed or you are looking for a group, Kristina is available for a free phone consultation.
Summit Clinical Associates, LLC
Kristina Vacha, LCSW, LBS                                                                   

Fall 2020 Groups

For Adults with Autism Spectrum Differences

Group Therapy

Co-ed Working Professionals - Wednesdays 8:00 PM - Teletherapy support group for adults who have graduated from college and are working full-time in professional careers. This group provides peer support, education about autism, and fosters growth in self-advocacy, coping strategies, social skills and emotional self-regulation. College students may be considered.  $120 per month or $40 per session.

Women on the Spectrum - Mondays 11:00 AM - Teletherapy support group for adult women on the spectrum with a range of educational backgrounds and employment. This group provides peer support and fosters growth in understanding living as a woman on the spectrum.  $120 per month or $40 per session.

Men on the Spectrum - Wednesdays 7:00 PM - Teletherapy support group for adult men who work full-time, part-time or may be unemployed or underemployed with high school and/or college education.  This group provides peer support, education about autism and facilitates growth in self-advocacy, coping strategies, social skills, emotional self-regulation and goal-setting.  Weekly group $100/month or insurance.  $120 per month or $40 per session.

PEERS Social Skills Group - Teletherapy group for social skill development using the PEERS for Young Adults Curriculum developed by Elizabeth Laugeson at UCLA.  This group will meet for 10 sessions beginning the week of September 14.  Session Fee $300 private pay or insurance.

Social Groups

Social Groups provide opportunities to practice social skills and make connections with peers through shared activities. Individuals must be able to participate independently. Fees vary.

Virtual Movie Group - Sunday afternoons.  Shows are picked collaboratively by group.

Virtual Craft Group - Friday mornings at 11am with specific activities planned by the group

Social Distance Walk  - Walk at a local park following social distancing guidelines.  

Virtual Book Club - Once a month - Reading books about autism spectrum differences.  

Virtual Paint Night - A monthly Paint Night via Zoom with local artist Christine Burke for adults on the spectrum and neurodiverse couples.

Summit Clinical Associates, LLC F.A.Q.s

Do you offer a sliding scale?  Yes, my personal philosophy is to support the efforts of my adult clients to live independently and to support your access to mental health services.  A sliding scale is offered based on a case-by-case basis, based on your individual circumstances and any family support you receive.

How do I join a group?  Before joining a therapy group an individual consultation is required so that you can meet me and ask questions and I can get to know you.  There is a separate fee for the consultation.  Based on this, we will discuss what group or groups would benefit you.  For social groups you will be asked to complete a form and check in by phone or email.

Do I have to be in individual therapy with you to join a group?  No, you do not have to see me for individual therapy to participate in a group, however some clients choose to do both.

Can a parent or support staff facilitate my participation in a group?  No, individuals must be able to participate independently in the group.

Can I drop in for the group?  For therapy groups, an initial visit to the group to check it out can be arranged, however, after that a regular commitment is required.  For social groups, participation is flexible.

Do I have to have an autism diagnosis to be in a group?  This is something we can discuss further during your individual consultation.  For group therapy, in most cases the answer is yes, however, exceptions may be made on a case-by-case basis, based on individual circumstances.

What if a parent or spouse wants me to participate, but I'm not sure I want to do it?  Self-advocacy is key. We can discuss how groups may benefit you, however as an adult it is always your choice to participate..

Can I find people to date in your groups?  You should be prepared to actively participate in the groups, to get peer support and gain skills that will support your relationships outside the group.  From time to time, natural connections may form, however this is not the primary purpose of the groups.

Are you inclusive?  Yes! I am inclusive.  I welcome everyone because the autism spectrum includes everyone.  I have training in LGBTQ+ and in cultural diversity.  

Do  you have groups for children?  No, I work with transitioning teens (approximately 19) and adults of all ages. I am happy to refer you to qualified providers who do work with children.

Can you diagnose autism?  No, as a licensed clinical social worker, I do not diagnose, however I often work with clients who are exploring a possible diagnosis. 

Kristina Vacha, LCSW
484-274-8957, [email protected]

Virtual Paint Party for Adults with Autism Differences

With Christine Burke - Artist, Author, Health Coach and
Former Special Education Teacher
& Kristina Vacha, LCSW

Sunday, Sept 20
3:00 pm - 5:00 PM (EST)
$20 per person
$30 per couple

Must be able to participate independently.

Kristina is a therapist that has experience working with adults on the autism spectrum difference and neurodiverse couples.

Email Christine at
[email protected] to
register. After you register you will be given
a material list and Zoom link.