Building circles of support for people

so that they have a good life even after their parents are no longer here to stand up for them

Building circles of support for people

so that their families have peace of mind about the future

Building circles of support for people

so that they are empowered to realise their aspirations and contribute to their community

Building circles of support for people

so that they form intentional friendships that broaden and enrich their lives

Building circles of support for people

so that they develop stronger links in the wider community

Building circles of support for people

so that they are as fulfilled and happy as they can be

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Autism From The Inside Out

30 Jun 2015

An illuminating and refreshing perspective on autism was presented recently - and our directors were there to enjoy it first-hand. Judith North of Orenda Training and Consultancy ran a brilliant 1-day workshop in Gloucester, hosted by Gloucestershire Voices. Entitled "Autism from the inside out", the workshop was influenced and designed by people living with Autism Spectrum Conditions, as well as their families and the people who support them day to day.

The team presenting the workshop included two adults with autism. One of them had invited his parents to attend, and they drove all the way from London to be there.

The gist of the presentation was that autism is a processing difference, and we all live with difference in every aspect of our lives. We learned what sensory processing is, explored our own processing systems, and reflected on the ways our default strategies can impact on the people around us. If we don't understand our own system for processing sensory input, how can we give effective support to someone on the autistic spectrum, or provide the kind of social translation that can make all the difference to him or her?

The day was enlightening, thought-provoking and fun. It included video clips and activities designed to show neuro-typical people what it feels like to live with autism and experience sensory overload. It was inspiring to hear of the growing body of literature by people with lived experience of autism - providing essential points of reference in contrast to the academic literature. It was sobering, however, to hear that services for people with autism are still dominated by deficit-based (impairment-based) thinking.

ACSYL is immeasurably grateful to Orenda Training and Consultancy. The word Orenda means "the power within us to create change in the world and ourselves". Our sentiments exactly!