Kids charity looks to raise awareness of autism

Charity / Sat 17th Jun 2023 at 11:14am

KIDS, the disabled children’s charity, is seeking young autistic people and their families to take part in an innovative new project to help people when they first receive a diagnosis of autism.

Being diagnosed with autism can be a confusing and frightening time for young people and their families. To help them through diagnosis, the NHS has commissioned KIDS to create a new service in Essex, Southend and Thurrock that will help people understand what autism is and support them to develop their own coping strategies.

KIDS is seeking young autistic people and their parents / carers to shape the service and to feature in films and articles that will showcase their experiences and opinions. Events are being held in Basildon, Colchester, and Harlow to share more information about the project and to talk to families about the topics they would like to see in the service.

The service will be delivered through two new websites – one for parents/carers and one for young people aged 12 to 25. Each will feature high-quality films and articles in which young people and families share their own experiences of autism alongside expert advice and pointers. There will be online tutorials and discussion groups where people can discuss their own issues and learn from each other.

KIDS’ autism co-ordinator, Antoinette Oakley-Smith, has lived in Essex all her life and has family experience of autism. She says: “Putting the voices of young people and their families at the heart of this project is what really excites me about it. I’m really looking forward to meeting families and working with them to make something that can benefit when they receive their autism diagnosis.”

Katherine Shaw, National Operations Director at KIDS says “We are delighted that the NHS trusted KIDS to deliver this service. KIDS has been working with young autistic people for over fifty years and we firmly believe that the real experts in autism are young autistic people and their families.”

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1 Comment for Kids charity looks to raise awareness of autism:

2023-06-19 07:33:57

Do love how the solution is simply to provide a website of resources. I hate to know how much funding this has taken from face to face and actual front line local independent charities who actually make a difference in person to families. All because the provide the stats and glossy figures that ministers love to see for "transparency and accountability" yet sadly does little for the actual person in crisis who really needs support.

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