Anna Kennedy Online – Autism Awareness Charity
Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Helen Eaton

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Helen Eaton

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Helen Eaton

Annas guest at Women’s Radio was Helen Eaton ​
‘All things Autism” will be aired at 1pm and 1am every day this week.  Please see www.womensradiostation.com

Helen Eaton

Helen Eaton is the author of the Arna & Ruby Autism graphic novels, has a mini-series of podcasts on neurodiversity, and gives talks and training on autism to families, schools, charities, and workplaces.

She has a post graduate qualification in primary education, which helps her understand what’s going on in our schools.

Alongside her autism work she still delivers leadership training for some of UK’s leading technology, finance, and retail companies.

After running her own training business for the past 20 years and specialising in behaviour, communication, and emotional intelligence, it seemed a natural shift to focus on autism 5 years ago. 

Combining her two passions means that she is also a Neurodiversity at Work specialist, helping companies better understand and support their neurodiverse employees.

She does have an amazingly neurodiverse family and doesn’t think in a typical way herself.  She most definitely has lived experience when she talks about autism.

Within her home Helen has experienced the joys that autistic thinking brings and describes her 3 teenagers as funny, loving, kind, quirky and bright. She knows the challenges autism brings though, spending long hours and many years battling for an appropriate education and support for her diagnosed teen.

She also understands the anxiety, frustration, and anger that autistic children experience as they struggle to cope with a world that isn’t very autism friendly.

There are a few dents in her walls and doors!

She believes in honesty, openness, and positivity when it comes to talking about autism.

Working with schools has shown her that far too often they rely on out-dated lists of things that autistic people supposedly can’t do.

Instead, schools should focus on what each child can do and find ways to enable them to feel safe, communicate and be able to learn.

Each month she offers one free talk on Autism in the Classroom, along with a series of live training sessions on Zoom.

These can be booked online at www.heleneaton.co.uk.

She can also be found on Twitter @HelenEatonASC and on Facebook Helen Eaton – Autism & Neurodiversity

Helen Eaton
Women’s Radio Station award

Women’s Radio Station award

Anna Kennedy – Women’s Radio Station award

I have been a presenter on Women’s Radio Station since the beginning talking ‘All things Autism’.

The station has received a brand new award: “Most Dedicated Mental Health & Wellbeing Online Radio Service – UK” in the Small Business Awards 2021 of Corporate Visions whoop!!

Congratulations to all the presenters and founders Howard and Russell we volunteer our time to spread the word of all our causes.

 

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Dr Ian C E Hale

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Dr Ian C E Hale

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Dr Ian C E Hale

Annas guest at Women’s Radio was Dr Ian C E Hale ​
‘All things Autism” will be aired at 1pm and 1am every day this week.  Please see www.womensradiostation.com

Dr Ian C E Hale shared:

To be clear …. it’s important to put my book and other work into context by knowing a little of their origins. I’m an Autistic person. It’s an indivisible part of who I am as an individual; it informs, goads and limits every thought and act of my life-but I refuse to let it define me. I’m a sportsman, poet, photographer, medical scientist and more-but first and foremost, a human being, with the same fears, hopes, weaknesses and feelings as everyone else.

I’m Asperger’s Syndrome, with mild Autism, Dyslexia and moderate Dyscalculia. To the best of my knowledge these traits have been passed down through previous generations of the family on my father’s side since the 18th Century. I have found written records: correspondence, diaries, and poetry from family archives of many forebears, their friends and colleagues.

I’m from the historic City of Bristol, England, a member of British Mensa, the World Academy of Medical Science, The Athenian Society and a graduate of Portsmouth, Bristol and Bath Spa Universities. My professional background is in Further and Higher education, SEND and genetics. I have four cats, Tisha, George, Pearl and Thor.

Being an author and private consultant https://policy.onuniverse.com/ in neurodiversity is one thing, but by being one I bring a unique dimension to its understanding and implications, which is one of the main reasons for writing the book-only someone who lives it truly knows what it’s like. This isn’t only academic theory or clinical observation- this is how it lives, good and bad.

I believe that WE are the best judges of what we need and should be involved at every level in all decisions made about us. The book is a definite aid to informing and empowering that goal. Because of that family experience, autism was always a part of everyday life for me. That understanding, combine with my experience, gives my work a unique perspective.

Autism is for life, including senior care, a fact seldom considered by social agencies. No-one “grows out” of Autism; it’s not “a phase”. The vulnerable child grows into a vulnerable adult at all stages of life. That’s the reason why parents and carers worry so much about the future of their children and are often accused of being “fussy” or “over-protective”.

The harsh truth is they are always thinking; “what will happen to MY child when we have passed or are no longer able to protect and speak for him/her”? That’s my goal-to be the voice for those who have none.

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Asma Khanum founder of ChatterBug

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Asma Khanum founder of ChatterBug

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Asma Khanum
Founder of ChatterBug

Annas guest at Women’s Radio was Asma Khanum founder of ChatterBug​.
‘All things Autism” will be aired at 1pm and 1am every day this week.  Please see www.womensradiostation.com

Asma Khanum shared:

It was great to be part of Anna’s show on All Things Autism on Women’s Radio Station and talk about the work ChatterBug Speech and Language Therapy Service has been doing as a company to help support children and young people with Autism.

It was also a real pleasure to have the opportunity to talk about my own experience of supporting parents who have a child with autism to becoming a parent of a child with autism myself.  I felt really privileged to have to opportunity to share my own story with the hope that it may help others.  

The wait for an autism assessment can be anything from 2- 5 years depending on where you live, meaning many families and individuals are unable to access the right support.  In response to this problem, we decided to launch our own Autism Assessment Clinic with a very experienced team of professionals who are experts in this field. 

For more information about our clinic please visit https://chatter-bug.com/autism-assessment-panel/ or contact us on social media – details below.

Asma Khanum

​About Asma:

Asma studied and trained at University College London as a Speech and Language Therapist.  She has worked with various NHS and Third Sector organisations across the country for over 20 years.

Asma feels privileged to have worked with children and young people with a range of Speech Language and Communication Needs (SLCN) and parents/carers and professionals that work to support them.

She has specialised in Early Years, Bilingualism and SEMH.  She has led a number of teams and is passionate about providing high quality, evidence-based interventions, that provides real results. She one of the original founders of ChatterBug Speech and Language Therapy Service, a Social Enterprise providing a range of Speech and Language Therapy Services.

Nationally recognised, ChatterBug is an NHS Business Partner and commissioned by CCGs, Local Authorities and Schools across the country and continues to grow from strength to strength.

Having not come from a business background Asma has worked tirelessly to grow ChatterBug from a small independent organisation, to what it is today a fast-growing national organisation, with a team of 50 and growing. Asma is passionate about leadership and believes in shaping and growing individuals to reach their full potential both personally and professionally.

She is proud of everything her team has achieved, however feels there is still a lot more work to be done. “Speech, Language and Communication skills are fundamental to all that we do and without good skills in these areas our children and young people will struggle to reach their full potential.  It is our mission to ensure children and young people with SLCN are able to access the best quality support at the right time wherever they are.”

Read about my journey: https://chatter-bug.com/2019/01/30/who-is-asma-khanum-at-chatterbug/

Coming from a background of poverty and socio-economic challenges Asma made a choice to challenge the cultural and societal conventions.  She never put limitations on herself.  Asma pursued her desire to change the world “People ask me about challenges I faced as an Asian Woman I never focused on those things, I focused on my vision and wanting to be best at everything I did, that was my only focus.  I also wanted”, head strong and having a sense that she wanted to change the world Asma worked on her grand plan of breaking free of the chains that constrained her.

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Michelle Seddon from Autism Together

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Michelle Seddon from Autism Together

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Michelle Seddon from Autism Together

Anna’s guest at Women’s Radio was Michelle Seddon.
‘All things Autism” will be aired at 1pm and 1am every day this week.  Please see www.womensradiostation.com

It was a pleasure to chat to Anna, it was my first radio interview and I’ll admit to being more than a little nervous. But Anna put me at ease straight away and the time flew by so fast I realised I hadn’t said half the things I’d planned to! I thought it might also be useful to recap some of the points we talked about as well as give you a bit more information about Autism Together.

Autism Together is a registered charity, formed in 1968 when a group of parents established The Wirral Society for Autistic Children, which later became Autism Together. So, we have been going for over 50 years- I think our values come for those early parents. One of the first parents- Mr John Brady refused to pay his rates as he felt his son was being failed by the local council.

He was threatened with a prison sentence and his appeal made it all the way to the house of commons – apparently the first time Autism has been mentioned there!  He banded together a group of parents who felt the same founding the Wirral society for Autistic children.

The raised funds to buy and refit Raby hall- this took over 10 years but in 1977 Raby Hall opened its doors to 6 people. John passed away in 2006, His Son Shaun who lived with us until his death in 2020 had lived a very happy life on Raby site for 43 years, the incredible legacy left by John and those early pioneering parents.

In 1980 we went through a name change as the individuals living with us were no longer children. We changed to Wirral Autistic Society and even through we’ve changed our name again in 2015 to Autism Together people still often refer to us as WAS. A specialist provider, we provided a huge range of services from Residential care homes, respite through to Supported living, domiciliary care, day services, work opportunities, right through to family support and play and youth groups and training.

https://www.autismtogether.co.uk/

What do we do?

We still have Raby hall, its gone through many refits over the years, as Raby Hall is set on large beautiful grounds, we were able to build a number of residential services, our respite service and our Kitchen Garden and farm day services are all based here. We have also set us services in the local community in Bromborough and as far afield as Wrexham.

We support around 400 people and employ around 1000 staff.  We can also provide training and support to families and others; we have provided some training for local police and fire brigade as well as working with football clubs and community champions.

We also help to run the river park in collaboration with Land Trust. Opening in 2014 it’s a closed landfill site that’s been transformed into a 28-hectare park with walks, wildlife and wetland areas and spectacular views of the river greatly appreciate by the local community. We are currently raising funds for a defib We have also been fundraising to get a defibrillator installed at our Port Sunlight River Park site: www.aeddonate.org.uk/projects/autism-together/

I look after our residential services, we have 20 registered care homes, and I’m supported by an experienced knowledgeable and all-around amazing team of 7 registered mangers, whose efforts over the past 20 months have been nothing short of super human!

At Autism Together our philosophy remains firmly rooted in a belief that:

  • We begin with what people can do, not with what they can’t do, by listening to each individual and acknowledging that they are the expert in their autism.
  • Our support begins with the person, along with a shared understanding of what is important to them and what their strengths and needs are.
  • Our support approaches are individualised so that staff can meet each person’s communication needs.

Adopting Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) accredited by Bild (British Institute of learning Disabilities) back in 2018, this model fitted so well with our existing values and has given us a clear framework to follow when supporting people.

How can you help us?

We have a charity abseil planned for 26th September Batron Square Trafford centre Manchester, you can opt to Abseil yourself or sponsor someone who’s’ already signed up for the challenge. I completed an Abseil down Liverpool cathedral back in 2018! Terrified didn’t even come close! But we supported each other and went over the top like pro’s, Cried and screamed our way down! But we did it! Funds raised from the Abseil will go towards additional services and equipment for the people we support.

SMILE amazon

We also have an online eBay shop where the people we support are able to sell their amazing products, you’ll find a lot of unique items here. https://www.ebay.co.uk/str/autismtogether

Our Amazon wish list has items that the people we support, and their staff have picked- lots of low-cost high impact things to pick here, as well as some larger wish list items.

This has really helped our guys through the various lockdowns.

You can also add us on SMILE amazon- basically this means every time you make a purchase through Amazon they donate on your behalf- even if you don’t pick Autism Together, please do this for a charity that’s local to you.

It doesn’t cost you a penny and charities like ours can really benefit from it. Details here https://www.autismtogether.co.uk/donate/   as well as some other ways to donate.

On a final note,

The past 20 or so months have been incredibly hard on everyone, throwing up challenges and frustrations in equal measure. I’d like to end with a huge thank you to our staff teams across all our services who have been simply outstanding. Their commitment passion and dedication has been inspiring.

They arrived everyday not knowing what they may face while carrying the burden of their own worries and fears, supporting people to manage impossible situations and being creative with their solutions. Adapting and rising to every single challenge and hurdle. You are all amazing!

Thank you, Anna, for the opportunity to talk about Autism Together.

Take care of yourselves out there, and if you’ve able to, remember to take care of each other too.

Michelle

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