Category Archives: Adults

For adults with autism, their parents or carers

This web site

Our aims

This website aims to point people to sources of information and support that might help with the following:

  • Parents and carers may want to find out about the nature of the autistic spectrum.
  • They may be looking for ways to support their children or young people in coping with the challenges of life and in reaching their potential.
  • Experiences of other parents and carers may help in getting a better idea of how things work.

The menus

Hover over menu options at the top of the page to see the list of sub-menus.        Below is a guide to the menu content with a few key page short cuts.

  • The Adults section is aimed primarily at adults on the autistic spectrum, their parents and carers.        The Resources section would also be worth a look for this group.        Some pages may also be of wider interest.
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  • The Events section provides information about events we at GAIN put on plus some other events activities and services that may be of interest.        They are generally in the Grantham area and all are in the UK.

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  • The FAQ section is intended to offer introductory and quite easy reading material.
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  • The Resources section offers a guide to the information available to parents and carers, primarily of children with autism.         It also points to sources of guidance and help and support.         Quite a bit of it is specific to Lincolnshire, notably in Resources and SEN.
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  • The Wider Area section covers support groups activities and services in Lincolnshire and touching on Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire and Leicestershire.

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  • The Teen Scene section is an on-line magazine aimed at adolescents and teenagers.        It aims to help readers to wind down and broaden their range of interests.

Keeping up to date

The RSS menu below offers lists of recently updated pages or recently created posts  (Events option).        The idea is to make it easier to keep up to date with this site.        If there is a problem click help icon on the right for our updates guide.

The list of recently updated pages below combines the Adults, Parents and Students categories.

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Money

Universal credit

Contact has produced a page about Universal Credit.        Click icon on the left to view.       They have also launched a campaign about Universal Credit called Counting the cost.        The aim is to stop the cut in benefits for disabled children it represents.        Click icon on the right for details.

They also have a helpline.         There are four ways to get in touch with Contact:                              See Facebook, Twitter & email queries

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See adult Care & Support about Carer’s Allowence for carers of adults.

Benefits news

  • Inquiry into disability benefits, led by Frank Field, ‘deluged’ by tales of despair.           Several themes emerge from the testimony heard by the work and pensions committee.           See article.
  • Exemption from re-assessment for Employment & Support Allowance (ESA) is not as expected.            People with life-long or severe disability will only be exempt if they are deemed to be unfit for ‘work-related activity’.              See article.
  • Get the lastest on the benefits system.             See Disability news            e.g. Call for action

Money Matters

This guide has been prepared for parents of disabled children who want to know what financial help may be available for them and what arrangements they may need to put in place to manage their children’s finances from birth and as they get older.

Benefits adviser

Carers First is the new name for Carers connect.         They have a dedicated benefits adviser.        He offers free advice to carers, including parents in a caring role, under the age of 50 and living in Lincolnshire.         He is very approachable and has professional experience of the benefits system.        In this role, though, he is completely independent of the government and does not work for a government agency.

  • See benefits  or look for Information -> Carers Rights on home page.
  • Contact Lincolnshire County Council’s Customer Service Centre, Monday to Friday, 8am – 6pm, by calling 01522 782224 or emailing carersservice@lincolnshire.gov.uk
  • For more about Carers FIRST see Resources.

Carers UK

For information on a range of benefits see Financial support.

Official information

Lincolnshire County Council publish information on benefits and finance in their Family Services Directory.            See:  Family-benefits             DLA-for-children          DLA-&-PIP-for-youth           PIP-for-ages-16—64  – see also below           Money-Advice

Also, for information about Carers Allowance see:  NHS        Government.

Personal Budget

If a child or young person has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan, or who has been assessed as needing an EHC plan, then a personal SEND budget can be requested.           See outline for Lincolnshire.            It contains links to a number of relevant articles.

Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

This is the replacement for DLA for people aged 16-65 with a disability or long term health problem.       It has been in the process of being phased in since 2013.

  • Citizens Advice offer a large number of pages about PIP, all neatly arranged to make it easy to find your way around.
  • The National Autistic Society (NAS) has published an series of pages on the new benefit.      They also have a list of related pages.
  • If you want to see what the government has to say about it, you can choose from OverviewDetail and News.

Benefits & community care

NAS small iconThe National Autistic Society provides a sound introduction to benefits
in relation to community care.

 

Family Fund

They provide grants to low-income families with disabled children.           Fill in their application form and post it to their office in York.           For more information click on the icon below.Family fund logoA representative attended a Lincolnshire Parent Carer Council coffee morning in 2012 to promote the scheme.

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TV/Radio blog – Children on-line …

Children on-line

BBC Radio 4 had a phone-in about protecting children on-line in Jan 2019.        Click icon for the podcast.        Drag along timeline to 12:43 to find the phone-in.

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Autism & communication

Michael Rosen finds out about communication with people on the autistic spectrum.             Click icon to listen on iPlayer.  

Atypical

Click icon to find the trailer for ‘Atypical’, Netflix’s new comedy series about autism.            It premiers in August 2017.          The eight-episode comedic series follows Sam Gardner, a high school senior on the autism spectrum, and his family as he navigates dating, school and being a teenager.

First episode dissapointing for one viewer.            In this op-ed, actor Mickey Rowe explains why Netflix’s new show Atypical misrepresents its autistic audience — and why that begins with its failure to include the autistic community in its creative process.

Another was happier.         For me the series is based on a extremely high functioning autistic individual. He goes to mainstream school and is achieving top grades.       He is very articulate and has a job outside of school plus a girlfriend. This for me is the dream outcome.      Many autistic and sensory traits were spot on.      Also the family dynamics were true and realistic.      I chuckled when the parents went to the support group and the dad kept being corrected on his use of language … 

Lucy Mangan on Responsibility

Click icon to listen to this intelligent and engaging interview.         Lucy Mangan feels she avoids responsibility whenever possible.  But she’s always been fascinated by those who run towards responsibility rather than away from it.  She talks to Bea Harvie, a post-graduate student, whose father got ill when she was thirteen.  Bea chose to take on a lot of caring duties towards her younger siblings while her Mother was busy caring for her Father.  She describes the experience as something she just got on with, and reveals that it also was a useful distraction from dealing with her own feelings about her Dad’s illness.  Until one day when she was sixteen and it all caught up with her.  She says it’s like shaking up a bottle of fizzy pop: ‘it’s got to come out some way’.

More or Less

Play button - listenThe Radio 4 programme that goes behind the numbers in the news.          For example,  Following a referendum, the UK has voted to leave the European Union.       Tim Harford and the team explore what that might mean for the UK’s economy.          
For example see Brexit economics             Click icon for more episodes.

The A-WordA-Word USA

The acclaimed international six part drama series will premiere in the USA on Wednesday July 13th on Sundance TV, 10pm Eastern time, 9pm Central.

Lack of empathy

Play button - listenHow far can empathy, or the lack of it, can explain cruelty.           Simon Baron-Cohen proposes turning the focus away from evil or specific personality disorders, and to understand human behaviour by studying the ’empathy circuit’ in the brain.          Also speaking:   forensic psychotherapist Gwen Adshead, crime writer Val McDermid and  philosopher Julian Baggini.          Click icon to listen again to this discussion.  

The A-WordA-Word - BBC 1

Autism family drama on BBC1 TV.          Concluding episode on 26th April Episode 6.        Tuesdays 9pm.          See also:  Video clips           GAIN post.

Men & Asperger’s

A radio programme may still be available to hear on-line:      Why do so many women think their men have Asperger’s syndrome?           (As of Jul 2016)

Dr Digby

In Holby City, Tue 3rd Nov, matters have come to a head for Dr Digby and he is experiencing a crisis of confidence.            His lack of people skills is getting in the way of his work as a doctor.               Dr Hanson has plans for him, though.              We will have to wait to find out what they are, and it could be several episodes before we do.               Still, it might be worth keeping an eye out to see what next Tuesday will bring.

Codes that changed the world

If you are a computer buff you might be interested in a Radio series about the history of computer programming.              One episode, about BASIC for example, was aired on Wed 8th Apr 2015.             You might be able to download the Podcasts of these programmes – still available Apr 2016.

Interviews about Autism

Radio 4 has been broadcasting a series of interviews about Autism.

  • A conversation with Professor Simon Baron-Cohen was aired on Tue 17th Feb 2015.            He is a highly respected authority on autism.
  • On Tue 24th Feb, an interview with a university research assistant with high-functioning autism was aired.       She explained her experience of life with very clearly.

You might be able to listen to Podcasts of these 15 minute programmes.          They should be available for at least 30 days after broadcast.               This one has stayed there for months.

Casualty

29 November 2014.    Move over Dr Chao, Dr Keogh is back.        Dr Lily Chao made her entry to the hospital drama series giving everyone around her short shrift.        Now Dr Dylan Keogh has made a comeback.         Someone asked him, “Do you always treat people like that?”.         “Yes” was the curt, perfunctory reply.

The Village

August 2014.     The plan is to cover the 20th century from the First World War to beyond the Second World War, over several series.          The mood is perking up now.

Casualty

The episode on 9th August 2014 featured a very convincing and  well crafted depiction of a teenage boy with autism.       He took a liking to someone playing Eric Clapton on the street.       It could be interesting to know that autistic people are represented on mainstream TV.

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Neurodiversity ID Card

Does Canadda group picyour son or daughter have difficulty explaining themselves to others?

A Neuro-diversity ID Card or Wristband might help.       Although they are based in Linocoln, Canadda have extended their free Neurodiversity ID service to parents of young people on the autistic spectrum in the Grantham area.       For information click PDF icon.

Doc iconClick page icon to find an application form.         Please be aware that an autism/aspergers diagnosis is needed in order to apply.

Canadda contact details are below.

  • 01522 716899
  • debbie.canadda@yahoo.co.uk

Diversity press

Amythest Schaber 

Amythest Schaber is an artist, writer, public speaker and advocate.         In her blog called Neuro Wonderful she offers insight into autistic life, put across in her unique style.        Click page icon to see her range of videos.         Look out for the one called What is autistic burnout?        (new)

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This page is dedicated to publications from the viewpoint of people who do not fit in with today’s prevailing norms, notably Asperger’s Syndrome – and those close to them.

Adults’ experiences

What is it really like to be an autistic adult?          Professor Ian Walker shares his story.          He is a retired university lecturer who was only diagnosed with autism at the age of 71.          Click icon to see article and video clip.          Find more interviews from the series at the bottom of the ITV page.

Why advertising falls flat

This article considers the possibility that people with autism might be savvier consumers.          Click icon to see article.

Autistic Allies

This is a discussion group for members.        They stress that it  is NOT a support group.      Their goal is to eradicate stereotypical images of autism, and to promote an autism-positive stance.         Click icon for Facebook group.          You have to join the group to see content.          See also Austism-positive.

NeuroDivergents

Monique Craine is a blogger, activist and campaigner for NeuroDivergent (ND) rights, AKA Human Rights.            She says, This video was inspired by a Powerpoint presentation which I delivered in the past – which people claimed ‘opened their eyes’ to autism.            It has been receiving praise from the autistic community, autism professionals and parents.            Click play button to watch.

Non-speaking / low-functioning?

I am autistic, non-speaking. I am also labeled “low-functioning”.         This label is a pre-judgment based on what I cannot do.          It makes people look at me with pity instead of trying to get to know me, listen to my ideas.

Difference or dissorder?

This article considers issues linked to the social and medical models of autism.

Dr Dan Edmunds

I know that autism is not a disease and not something to be altered, it is a culture and a mode of being, and through my 17 years of journeying with fellow persons in the spectrum I am increasingly convinced that being autistic is a necessary adaptation to a complex world and that there are unique strengths that are a part of autistic culture.       I see many programs to alter autistic persons as discriminatory, for it seeks to exterminate a culture.       If we treated other cultures the way autistic persons are often treated, there would be outrage.        Facbook small iconBut there are powerful forces convincing people that autistic persons are defective.        Maybe one day this will change, I strive for it.        Dan L. Edmunds                   Click Facebook icon to browse his blog.

Steve Silberman

Steve Silberman is an award-winning science writer and has a lot to say about autism.              For example, Two further developments, thinks Silberman, make life much brighter for people with autism today.         One is social media: “In face-to-face, real-time interactions, people on the spectrum are often overloaded.        Conversation, eye contact, body language, all the little social signals – that can get too much.        Whereas, on the computer, at their own pace, it’s often much more natural to them.”              See article, The man who wants us to embrace autism,                It explores his views and insights.

See writings and media for more of his work.               He is the author of NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversitysee Amazon.               See also Profile

Facbook small iconAutonomous Press

Owned by disabled workers, Autonomous Press seeks to revolutionize academic access.                  This can refer to a lot of things, e.g.  access to higher education, inclusive class environments …                     See About for more information.

Neuro-cosmopolitan

This website could be a treasure trove for the gifted academic or teacher.

  • Here is one of the author’s more accessible articles: Advice to Young Autistics I did learn to navigate the neurotypical social world. But I didn’t approach that task with the intention of trying to change myself in order to “fit in.” I approached it as an adventure in learning my way around an exotic foreign culture.
  • This could be a good starting point for further reading: Neuro-what?

OutlookBe awesome

These links are all from the Ollibean website.                 If you are always questioning things, maybe a bit of a non-conformist, this site could be a useful starting point.

  • Attitudes  –  We need to start to change how non-disabled people see disabled people, and then we can begin demanding a change in attitude.           We have enough true allies to join and support us, and we can demand what we decide we need to live a fulfilling human life.
  • Be awesome   –  Ableism – discrimination against disabled people, often unconscious/implicit.         Ableism brought forth by pity is frustrating.           It gets in the way of possibilities.
  • Universal design  –  When more people participate, everyone wins because human beings learn from each other –   e.g.  Captioned videos, films and TV help with literacy, including literacy of non-disabled people.
  • False choices  –  e.g.  Is autism a disability or a difference?

Asperger United

This is a magazine aimed at adults with Asperger’s Syndrome.             It is published by the National Autistic Society.                Click link below for more information.

AspUtd logo

Autistic Not Weird

Autistic not weirdThis is a website by a former teacher with Asperger Syndrome.              Click icon to browse.

Original and tribal minds

What started out as an explanation for autistic behaviour has with twelve years of obsessive thought become the basis for a profound shift in thinking about psychology.              See introduction.

Key words

Ableism:  quick          detail
Autism-positive:       article
Aspie:                description
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Not getting out

Introduction

Just a quick tip:  perhaps you could try using one of the following statements:

  • “I can be anxious and still deal with the situation.”
  • “I’ll just let my body do its thing. This will pass.”
  • “This anxiety won’t hurt me, even if it doesn’t feel good”.
  • “This feeling isn’t comfortable or pleasant, but I can accept it.”

Experiences

More detailPanic attacks etc

  • What is the range of symptoms?
  • Can people with high functioning Asperger’s be severely effected by
    anxiety?      It seems so:
    – High functioning autism is associated with anxiety disorder.
    – A discussion of the link between high IQ and anxiety
  • Can virtual reality help with not getting out?      Video           Text           Research

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GAIN logo - thumbnailPlease be aware that we, at GAIN, are not qualified to give advice.              See disclaimer.

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Personal reflections

They thought I was lazy …

They thought I was lazy…when I was just actually autistic.       This is one of many perceptive reflections on life through one female Asperger’s lens.         Click icon for article.

Socially acceptable

The writer shares some difficulties he experiences tryinjg to mix socially with neurotypical people.       Click icon for article.

What is Neurotypical?

Writers often ask “What is Asperger’s Syndrome?”       The boot is on the other foot in this article.        For example, it may be difficult to get an opinion from a Neurotypical person.        Click icon for article.

The decline and fall of “autism”

A mother of two children with profound developmental impairments questions Simon Baron-Cohen’s description of autism as a variant like left-handedness or homosexuality.       Click icon for article.

All a bit autistic?

No, we are not all a little bit autistic.       Click icon for article.

Stranger darker better

Here is a message to all the self-diagnosed autistic people.        Click icon for article.        It concludes, Trust yourself.     Trust the research you’ve done.  …      Self-diagnosis grants us access to our community and resources to help us live better lives and self-understanding that can radically change how we live.       See also about Sabrina.

Talk normally please

Ido is non-verbal but this does not stop him from keeping a blog.         In his mother’s guest post she says,  I thought, “Okay, say something now before this becomes a pattern and he becomes insulted.”      As tactfully as I could, I mentioned to her that Ido doesn’t like “high five.” He wants to be spoken to normally.  …      Regularly, Ido gets letters from parents telling him that they now speak normally to their child with autism, thanks to his advice, and that their child is responding positively.        Click icon for article.

Bob Christian

A father, husband, and poet on the autism spectrum.        His favourite poets are spoken word artists like Neil Hillman.         Click icon to see his profile.        See blog for more contributors to Learn from Autistics.          See also Poems.

Why do you do that?

  • All my fingers in perfect order moving in a rhythmic order its calming to me like the sight of a quiet ocean gently coming in and out to shore.
  • Having all the same foods creates less anxiety and means I don’t have to starve myself.
  • Without those plans I have no idea what to expect or whats going on, I depend on those plans to live and without them I just fall apart.

Click icon to read article.

Autism’s Resident Experts

This article it titled, Oh, the Autistic Humanity … of Neurotypical Rejection of Autism’s Resident Experts.          Perhaps the nub of the article is,  I mean, we’re right here, in all our autistic glory, with tons of insight and experience just waiting to be tapped. …     Yet, we’re pushed to the side, and research and conversations march on without us.          The author describes herself a former social scientest because, I believe, based on my own observations, that it’s impossible for any of us to interact with others and not be personally affected / involved.      Humans are not built that way, and pretending otherwise just seemed like a big ole exercise in but-we’re-really-a-science! hubris.            Clickicon to read article.

Proud to be

This is my first April as an autistic person.       I know I’m autistic and I know Charles is too, but I also know now that we are not lost.        Click icon to see.

Understanding the spectrum

The title of this article is, Why I Want More People To Understand That Autism Is A Spectrum.         The author writes, When I speak to others I often get, “Oh, you have autism? I would have never known.” That is something many of us have to face on the spectrum.             Click the icon on the left to read the article

Doc iconTrying to blend in

Passing is not good for your mental health.        It teaches us to have shame in who we are.       It gives a message that we are not good enough.

Passing takes up so much of an autistic person’s limited social energy that we go home and have sensory meltdowns the minute we can be alone.         When I was a child – and even now with work – I could hold things together through the school day but would come home and fall apart.

Of battered aspect

Doing damns the darkness.          Every now and then I am reminded, with a shock, that the world isn’t what it used to be for many people with intellectual disabilities.

Heightened senses

An adult on the spectrum wants others to see where she is coming from.        Click picture to read her essay.

They may not always understand exactly what you’re saying or where you are coming from when you explain things to them, as they themselves are in a different reality completely, only connected to yours when the waves are crossed and you can look through their eyes with both understanding and patient communication, the thing many struggle with.

Dear autism parent …

This is a wide ranging letter from someone with autism to autism parents, with comments at the bottom of the page.         I decided, aged 36, to request an assessment for autism because things have not been easy for me.      You see, there’s lots about my autism that isn’t visible.      And yet, my experience of the world shares some similarities with that of your child.             The author calls herself Mamma Pineapple.

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Sensory Sensitivity – Food …

Food challenges

Options Group have produced a helpsheet – Facing food challenges for those with autism & sensory processing differences.       The author is one of their specialist occupational therapists.        Click icon to view.

SPD

Sensory Processing Disorder is the newest term for the condition that you may see  referred to using similar names like Sensory Integration Difficulties.            Click icon to find out about it.            See also:  What is SI?         ConferencesUK        Star Institute          What is SPD?          SPD and other disorders           Q & A – e.g.  UK mum

Quiet clinic

Specsavers in Lincoln High Street, LN5 7DW, will be holding its first clinic on Sunday 6th August 10am until 4pm with the next one being on Sunday 3rd September and then the first Sunday of every month,            These clinics have been planned in consultation with local support groups such as Canadda and PAACT.            Click icon for more information.

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For coping with sensory overload see Challenging behaviour.

Sensory differences

Click icon to see an article from the National Autistic Society.               It covers many possibilities.              Many people on the autism spectrum have difficulty processing everyday sensory information.       Any of the senses may be over- or under-sensitive, or both, at different times.

Too much information can cause stress, anxiety, and possibly physical pain.       This can result in withdrawal, challenging behaviour or meltdown.

Some people say they find coloured filters helpful, although there is only very limited research evidence.

Haircut

There is no shortage of advice for coping with sensory sensitivity when getting a child’s hair cut.

A haircut technique

One barber has developed a unique technique where he will cut a child’s hair during long periods while sitting on the floor, on window sills or even in the car.            See article with video clip.

Going to the dentist

  • This article was written by an autism parent after a trip to the dentist.                 The first half of this is the How Did We Get Here part.          The second is How Can You Maybe Get Here part. 
  • Many of us dread the thought of visiting the dentist but for people with autism and/or learning difficulties it can be an especially challenging experience.                  See:  helpsheet

Sensory library

Linkage has a sensory toy library.           The Linkage Sensory Library is a new venture that will bring fun, learning and the therapeutic benefits of using sensory equipment to people with disabilities, including those with learning difficulties, across Greater Lincolnshire.             Click icon on the left for more information.           They have sites in Toynton, Grimsby and from September 2017, Lincoln.            They also have a touring bus.            See also website.

Ear plugs

Vibes are earplugs that are designed not to block outside noise, but to lower the volume.          Like many people with autism, Noah, From Ohio, hears noises much, much louder than the rest of us.          His father says Noah first tried them at a play, when he felt agitated by the noise.          See:  Vibes          FAQ         Amazon.            There are also alternatives.          Please be aware that GAIN is unable to vouch for any of the ear plugs.

Sensory issues

This booklet givers an occupational therapist’s view.     It addresses how to read the signs and coping strategies.

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GAIN logo - thumbnailPlease be aware that we, at GAIN, are not qualified to give advice.              See disclaimer.

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Related Calendar – Lincoln workshops …

Have your say

Lincolnshire Autistic Society are putting together feedback from parents and adults with Asperger’s Syndrome about autism related issues.       In particular they believe that the main areas of concern are Education Health Care Plans and Children’s diagnostic pathway.       Click PDF icon for details.        If you have something to say please contact: elizabeth.elvidge@lincolnshireautisticsociety.org.uk .       She would like to hear from you by the end of March, if possible.

Childhood anxiety

Family Graffiti are putting on a Childhood anxiety workshop on 14 Feb in Magna village hall, Great Hale,  Sleaford, NG34 9LH.         Click poster to zoom in.         See map.

PAACT workshops

PAACT is putting on several workshops at St Peter and St Paul’s Church hall, Skellingthorpe Rd, Lincoln, LN6 7RB.        Email Gordon Forsyth at paactsupport@hotmail.co.uk to book your place.

  • Andrew Whitehouse will lead a course in behaviour management on 15 Feb.        £10 per person.        Networking from 9.15am to begin training at 10am.        Click icon for event details.
  • Hilllary Sharp will provide Puberty & wellbeing training on 1st Mar        £25 per person.         See poster for more information.
  • Jane Husscisson will provide Makaton training on 4th Mar.         £25 per person.         See poster for more information.

East Midlands events

Click icon for the latest Contact news bulletin.         To find out about Contact see about.

  • The selfish giant  – theatre show for children with additional needs and their families.        13 Mar, Lincoln.        All places are free but need to be booked.        See poster.
  • Free workshop for EHC plans in Nottingham on 26 Mar.       A few places left as of 30 Jan.        Click icon for details.
  • What’s on at the end gives a round-up of events by county.

SEND workshops …

Lincolnshire Parent Carer Forum (LPCF) are putting on parents’ workshop days about Special Educational Needs and Disability.        £10 for non-members.       Click icon for details.        (Might need Future events tab).

  • Tue 26 Feb in Boston.  for those without an EHC plan.
  • Wed 20 Mar in Lincoln. for those entering or in the EHC process.
  • LPCF has also been involved with the council’s Special Educational Needs consultation exercise.          Click icon to see when and where they will be holding their coffee mornings.

LPCF will also be putting on a general signposting event on Wed 22 May in Lincoln,

The Groove

An exciting, fun-filled night for adults with disabilities aged 16+, their families and support workers.          Saturday 13th AprilGuildhall Arts Centre Ballroom, St Peter’s Hill, GranthamNG31 6PZ.        Click icon for more information.         See also map.

Family dog workshops

Workshops for families with children diagnosed with autism in Lincoln on 12 Apr, 10 May and 7 Jun.       Click icon for details.

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These events, on our Related Calendar, are NOT put on by GAIN but may be of interest.              See also Local Groups for autism support groups in the South Lincolnshire and beyond.             They put on events in their area.

Sensory perception

PAACT has invited Olga Bogdashina, Lecturer at the International Autism Institute to share her expertise on sensory perception & communication on 8th Feb in Lincoln.        Click icon for details.

Signposting & workshops

  • Free signposting and information event in Horncastle on Tue 22nd Jan 2019
  • Workshop: “Talking to children with Disabilities/SEN about Puberty, Relationships & Sexual Health” in Horncastle on 22nd Jan 2019

Dick Whittington

Polka Dot Pantomimes are performing another season at the Guildhall Arts Centre theatre in Grantham.       The relexed performance is scheduled for 2nd January 2019 at 2pm.       Phone the booking office on (01476) 406 158 to confirm that you are booking the relaxed performance.       See also available seats

Lincoln Castle Explorers

On the 29th December, 9 – 10am, we have an exclusive opportunity outside of our opening hours, for children and adults on the Autism spectrum, to visit with their families.       The team at Lincoln Castle have undergone Autism Awareness training and worked alongside Lincoln’s Parent Support Group PAACT.         Click icon for more information and to book.

The Groove

We have a Christmas disco at the Guildhall which is suitable for adults with disabilities aged 16+, their families and support workers.          It is on Saturday 22nd Dec 2018, Guildhall Arts Centre Ballroom, St Peter’s Hill, Grantham. NG31 6PZ.        Click icon for more information.         See also map.

Making sense of autism

Free training session for parents and professionals on 29th Nov at Huntingtower Primary School, Grantham, NG31 7AU.         Click icon for more information / booking.

Autism Conference

PAACT is taking bookings to attend and for information stands for annual conference in Lincoln on Tuesday 13th November 2018.
The venue will be The Showroom, Tritton Road, Lincoln, LN6 7QY.         Click icon for agenda.

See:  Book to attend          Book display stand          Booking return address         map

Gateway club

Becky, the leader of The Gateway Club, would like to invite you to an open evening on Thursday 8th Nov.        The Gateway Club is an evening social club for those 18+ with learning disabilities.            They are a service run by Grantham and District Mencap.       The club is on Monday & Thursday 6.30 – 9pm, at The Cree Centre on Aire Road / Medway avenue, NG31 7QP.       We offer activities that are both centre based and out in the community.

They are trying to encourage new members and have a open evening planned for people to come along for a chat, piece of cake and see what they do …           Click PDF icon for poster.

Louth speaker event

Thursday 6th September, London Road Pavillion, Louth, LN11 9QP, 10am – 3pm.          Registration, tea & coffee from 9.15am.           Email LAAFS:  contact@laafs.org for more information and to book.

Performing Arts Workshops

Two Linkage Adult Skills days for people aged 16+ with learning disabilities, are coming to the Newark area:

  1. On 21st August with a Greatest Showman themed performance arts workshop.         Click on link to book your place.
  2. Then on 28th August, another workshop.        You can dance, you can jive, having the time of your life.         See  Mamma Mia!

Caravan breaks

Magic moments for autistic kids has a caravan in Chapel St Leonards, up the coast from Skegness, available for bookings between May and September 2018.         Click icon for details.          See also Take a break.

Summer Fun

Contact East Midlands has put together a bulletin of summer activities.         Click icon to browse.          Venues include Nottingham and Leicester.          The sailing session is the other side of Nottingham.

Dysart Park Fun Day

GAIN will have a stall at The Dysart Park Fun Day again this year, on Sunday 1st July 2018, 11am to after 4pm.         Click poster thumbnail for official information.          See also map.

We would be grateful for any donated tombola prizes – old toys, books, food/drink, plants, trinkets, toiletries, teddies, etc (we won’t turn anything down).            Please leave them at the Belton Lane Children’s Centre, with the receptionist OR contact GAIN at
(01476) 855 070 to arrange to drop off or collect.

Playtowers

Playtowers special needs evening every Thursday from 28th June.      Venue is at Rochford Tower lane, Boston., PE21 9RH.        £6.95 per person, including meal and drink.          Click thumbnail for poster.

Little Steps support

An opportunity to chat/laugh/cry/celebrate the ‘little steps’ etc. 13th June at the Jubilee Church Life Centre, Grantham.

Challenging decisions

Free workshops about Education, Health and Care, EHC, plans:

  • Tribunals, 18 May, Northampton.          See poster
  • Challenging decisions, 18 June, Northampton.          See poster
  • Challenging decisions, 20 June, Nottingham.          See poster

SEND Workshops

  1.  Workshop about SEND legislation on 18th May in Navenby, near Lincoln.         For parents without an EHC plan.
  2.  Workshop about the EHC process on 15th June in Spalding.          For parents entering or in the EHC process.

Click icon on the right for details.          See also:  booking form  – download        SEN/EHC information        SEN/EHC support

Carers’ event

Carers FIRST are hosting a carer’s event promoting carer’s week on Monday 11th June at Carers First office, 28 Market Place, Grantham. NG31 6LR.        Phone:  0300 303 1555

The event is to highlight services that are available to carer’s who may help them in their caring role.

Fun on the farm

Free event on Saturday 16th June at Tattershall Farm Park, Lincolnshire, LN4 4JR.           Click icon for details and to book.         See also map.

Curly Hair Project

The Curly Hair Project is putting on talks on aspects of autism around  the country.          Tickets from about £20.           Click icon for their full list of  events.

  • Wed May 23: ASD and Females – Workshop, Peterborough

Sounds of the 60s

Linkage are putting on a disco on Friday 11th May from 8pm ‘til late at The County Assembly Rooms, 76 Bailgate, Lincoln, LN1 3AR.        This is a fundraising event for a learning centre at Boultham Park.         Click thumbnail to book.

Peterborough Meet-up

Autism Peterborough are organising a meet-up for Thursday 19th April at the Nene Valley Community Centre, Candy Street, Peterborough, PE2 9RE.        Friendly chat over cup tea and coffee.    With a Tombola stand and special guest stands …          Click icon to for more information.         See also local groups.

Autism Conference

Lincolnshire Autism Conference, Thursday 22nd March 2018 at The Petwood Hotel, Woodhall Spa, LN10 6QG.          Click icon to book your place.           Please return this form to janet.corcoran@talk21.com or her postal address on the form.

SEND consultation

Lincolnshire County Council is developing a new strategy for special education.                   The Lincolnshire  Parent Carer Forum (LPCF) is keen for parents to have their say.        Click icon for survey form.           Open until 14th March 2018.          See also:  LPCF information

The Groove

An exciting, fun-filled night for adults with disabilities aged 16+, their families and support workers.          Saturday 10th March, Guildhall Arts Centre Ballroom, St Peter’s Hill, GranthamNG31 6PZ.        Click icon for more information.         See also map.

Signposting

Lincolnshire Parent Carer  Forum will be putting on a free signposting and information event on Wednesday 24th January at The Stanhope Hall, Boston Road, Horncastle, Lincolnshire, LN9 6NF – see Map.            Click icon for poster.          See also LPCF Events.

Bourne talks

The Curly Hair Project is putting on talks on aspects of autism around  the country.          Several are planned for Bourne at Rippingdale Village Hall, Station Street, PE10 0TA.            See map.            Tickets from £19.70.

See also full list of Curly Hair Project events.

Conference

Autism Peterborough are putting on a conference on Sunday 17th December at Omiston Bushfield Academy, Peterborough, .         The guest speaker will be Geoff Evans and the title will be The sensory world and challenging behaviour.          £1 donation on the day.          See also:  map         local groups – about Autism Peterborough.

Aladdin Panto

Relaxed performance on Mon 18 Dec 2017, 1:30pm at Embassy Theatre, Grand Parade, Skegness, .           See details          map.

PAACT calendar

Parents and Autistic Children Together hold monthly morning and evening meetings in Lincoln.            They also put on a monthly afternoon games club.           See also about PAACT.

Swimming

PAACT swimming starts back this SATURDAY 28th January 2017, 5:30 – 6:30 pm.         You can start getting access to the changing rooms by 5:10 pm if you need the time to change.              The swimming is at, North Kesteven sports centre, North Hykeham, Lincoln, .           Below are the dates for the years session we have booked. the cost is £3 per child and £2 per adult.

January 28th         February-25th         March-25th          April-22nd          May-20th           June-24th           July-22nd           August-12th          September-23rd          October-21st            November-25th            December-09th.

Autism Conference

PAACT invites you to their annual conference in Lincoln.               It will be on Tuesday 21st November 2017 at the Lincolnshire Showground, the same as last year.               Click icon for poster.

Here is a summary of the Talks at the conference and biographies of speakers.           Please return the booking form to simply attend the event – click icon above for prices.          GAIN will be represented there.

To book space for a display stand use this form as well as the attendance form..          The £50 covers the stand and one person.           Additional people are £30 each.

For more information contact:  paactsupport@hotmail.co.uk               See also directions for venue with Map .

Quiet clinics

Specsavers in Lincoln High Street, LN5 7DW, hold quiet clinics on the first Sunday of every month, 10am until 4pm.            These clinics have been planned in consultation with local support groups such as Canadda and PAACT.            Click icon for more information.

Have your say

The closing date to have your say about delays in getting GP appointments is 10 Nov 2017.            See survey.             It only takes about 5 minutes.

Magic Moments

  • They have availability from Wednesday 6th to Thursday 28th September and Wednesday 4th to Saturday 21st October, all at the rate of £170 for up to 4 nights and £300 for a week.
  • Contact on 07742 565382 most times and days to discuss further details.              See Take a break for more about Magic Moments and other specialist providers.

Autistics Together

CANadda event:  Tuesday 31st October 2017, Autistics Together which will be held from 9am – 3.30pm at The Engine Shed, University of Lincoln, Brayford Pool, Lincoln, LN6 7TS.          This event is for adults only (no under 16’s).          Cick icon on the left for poster.           See also booking.

Dunkirk

Subtitled screening, Wednesday 23rd August, Dunkirk at 7.30pm.            See:  Dunkirk      South Holland Centre.

Coffee morning

Lincolnshire Autistic Society coffee morning at Castle Cafe and Bar, Albion Street, Spalding, PE11 2AJ on Sunday 20th August 2017, 10am onwards.          Their first Sunday event.           Click thumbnail for poster.

Book with Patrick Downing:  01775 248 470.

Holiday club

Supported by BBC Children in Need, Linkage are able to offer free places at a Holiday Club at Weelsby Campus, Grimsby, DN32 9RU, between the 24th and 28th July 2017 from 10am – 3pm each day.         This is an exciting opportunity for 13-18 year olds with disabilities or additional needs to make new friends and have fun whilst trying new activities.            Updated details taken from an email from louise.cotton@linkage.org.uk.

Suicide intervention

We have just run a very successful ASIST course in Lincoln and have another one planned for July 25/ 26th. We hope these dates will be particularly suitable for those working in education, or anyone that wants to enjoy a few summer days in beautiful Lincoln.
See also booking terms.

Relaxed Prom

Prom 19 is to be a concert suitable for children and adults with autism .         12 mid-day, Saturday 29 Jul 2017 Royal Albert Hall, London.           Programme to include music by Rimsky-Korsakov, Rossini and Johann Strauss II, as well as Pharrell Williams’s ‘Happy’ and the ‘Doctor Who’ theme.          See details.          The Proms on TV page does not seem to feature this concert, though.

Dysart Park Fun Day

GAIN is to have a stall at The Dysart Park Fun Day again this year, on Sunday 2nd July 2017, 11am to after 4pm.            Click poster thumbnail for official information.             See also map.

We would be grateful for any donated tombola prizes – old toys, books, food/drink, plants, trinkets, toiletries, teddies, etc (we won’t turn anything down).            Please leave them at the Belton Lane Children’s Centre, with the receptionist OR contact GAIN at (01476) 855 070 to arrange to drop off or collect.

Autistic Pride Day

On June 18 every year, organisations around the world celebrate Autistic Pride Day, with events around the world.              See awareness days

CAMHS surveys

If you have experience of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAHMS) in Lincolnshire, you can give them your feedback.           These are for parents and young people.              See:  parents          young people              Both versions close on 31st May 2017.

Robyn Steward

Please book your place on this amazing evening where our warm up act will be Andrew Whitehouse who is responsible for putting PAACT and Robyn together.              The evening starts at 7:00pm through to 9:30pm on June 6th at Lincoln College.          The cost is £20.00.            There is a limit of 60 places for this evening talk.            To book your place on this talk please email  paactsupport@hotmail.co.uk.

Family Funfest

Sleaford additional needs group, Rainbow stars, and Grantham disabled children’s society are joining forces for a family day at Sleaford rugby club on the 27th of May 2017.            Click icon on the right to log your interest.             See their organisation page for more detail.

For Autism Parents

This is a free expert-led event about the challenges of and provision for autism and complex needs.            It will be in Leicester on 16th May.          See details to book your place.

Rand Farm Park visit

Family Activity: exclusive event for families with children on the Autistic spectrum, ADHD or Learning difficulties.           Tuesday 11th April 2017, 5 – 8pm.           £6.50 per adult and per child.            PAACT needs at least 30 to take part in this activity.
See also:  website            map

Spilsby day out

A holiday club with a free day out for 13-18 year olds with disabilities or additional needs.           3rd-7th April 2017, 10am – 3pm.             Toynton Campus, Toynton All Saints, Spilsby, PE23 5AE.            Book before 17th March.                 See also map.

Next Steps

This transitions event is on 28th March at Social Care Exchange, Low Manor Road, Lincoln.               Click thumbnail to see poster.             See also:  event             website             map.

Autism Conference

Lincolnshire Autism Conference, Thursday 23rd March 2017 at The Petwood Hotel, Woodhall Spa, LN10 6QG.             Click icon to book your place simply to attend.             Please return this form to janet.corcoran@talk21.com or her postal address – on the form.              GAIN will be represented there.

Here is the Invitation to set up a display/stall at the conference, complete with application form.             For more information contact Gordon Forsyth at enquiries@lincolnshireautisticsociety.co.uk  or  07847 5073.                See also Map with directions.               Please be aware that Gordon is currently using the Lincolnshire Autistic Society email address for returning display booking forms and enquiries.

Self-harm workshops

Following on from requests from parents and professionals Lincolnshire Parent Carer Forum (LPCF) will be holding self-harm talks and workshops on Wednesday 15th March 2017 in South Holland Centre, Market Place, Spalding, PE11 1SS.                 Click icon for more information.             See also LPCF Newsletter.

CAMHS survey

If you have experience of Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAHMS) in Lincolnshire, there may just be time to voice any concerns you have to your GP, or who ever made the referral, so that they can take them into account when filling in the survey for professionals.              The idea, as you might imagine, is to help to improve their services.                  See Home for more information.               The post is currently at the top.            The survey closes on 28th Feb.

Lincoln research

My name is Sahibur Rahman, I study at the University of Lincoln.         I am currently undergoing research for my dissertation which focuses on the way media affects autistic individuals, and as a marketing student, how in particular adverts can be/are catered to autistic people.       As its a topic regarding autistic people I was wondering if I was able to get in contact with individuals who are parents to autistic children or are autistic themselves.      

I would conclude a one to one meeting with them and it would be completely confidential.       I understand this is quite forward and giving such information out is a problem, however this would help my study massively.                 Email:  SahiburRahman@hotmail.com     (Sent:  20 Jan 2017)               She could travel as far as Grantham if need be.

Transition planning

A free two day program of information and workshops highlighting the many issues around the transition from childhood to adulthood.           23rd & 24th February 2017, at Bishop Grosseteste University College, Lincoln, LN1 3DY.            Book either or both using form.

Managing money

A free course in Boston on Monday 6th February .        See:   poster         website.

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Associated conditions

Alexithymia

A condition involving lack of empathy.         A difficulty in experiencing, expressing, and describing emotional responses.         Some with autism have this lack of empathy but many do not.        Click icon for an easy reading interview.        Professor Geoff Bird says that alexithymia and autism are independent of each other.

For detailed and definitive information see:  Alexithymia info 

Dyslexia

Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty that mainly affects the way people read and spell words.        Click icon for an easy reading introduction.         Scroll down for comments.

  • For more detail, see  British Dyslexia Association  (BDA).         Includes FAQ.        They also have resources for parents.         And much more …
  • See Dislexia outreach for support in Lincolnshire.        They support parents, teachers, and pupils.
  • See also under handwriting aids below.

Demand avoidance

Pathological demand avoidance (PDA) – part of the autism spectrum.            Click page icon on the left for PDA society website and PDF icon for a PDA Society PowerPoint presentation.

Demand avoidance sounds similar to Oppositional defiance, so what is the difference?         In the PDF file above, page 29, it says that PDA is an autism spectrum disorder rooted in anxiety, whereas ODD is not.

Echolalia

  • Here is an introduction to echolalia.        Mimicry is an efficient way to experiment with different sounds and practice emerging social language skills. 
  • This article offers a medical analysis.        People with echolalia repeat noises and phrases that they hear.      They may not be able to communicate effectively because they struggle to express their own thoughts.         If they struggle to do anything other than repeat what has been said, they may have echolalia.         Some children with autism are regularly tested for this during their speech lessons.
  • Here is a more detailed article about echolalia with autism Even echolalia is a normal way to learn language.        Most children use echolalia to learn language.         The majority of children babble in a rhythmic way, which is actually mimicking the cadence of our language. 
  • In adults Echolalia should normally disappear around two and half years of age.         It is often considered abnormal if it persists beyond age 3 years.

Dysgraphia

Dysgraphia is having difficulty learning to:     1. recognise and write letters and words       2.  link sounds, speech and writing.

  • For an easy reading introduction, see  About Health.           See links for more detailed information.
  • This dedicated Dysgraphia website has been written by a mother and university lecturer, and an undergraduate with dysgraphia.

Dyscalculia

Dyscalculia is a specific difficulty with arithmetic, or maths.

  • The Dyscalculia website looks pretty definitive.           It offers a handy introduction
  • For more information see Dyscalculia Talks.         It has articles to read as well as video clips to watch.
  • The Dyscalculia Conference website is aimed at professionals, but might be interesting to anyone teaching their own child at home.

Dyspraxia

A Developmental co-ordination disorder.

  • For an easy reading introduction, see  NHS Choices.          Scroll down for comments.
  • The Dyspraxia Foundation has a great deal to offer, including introductionchildren,   FAQ.         See also:  Home for helpline and  Local groups – including Leicstershire and Peterborough
  • You may be surprised to learn that it can affect speech, see Speech and Language.

Handwriting aids

  • Fun to write “A simple step by step approach to encourage the correct method of forming letters and numbers and to develop writing skills.         Contents:   6 reusable writing cards, wipe-off pen, pencil, half-plain half-lined pad and guide.”         Amazon may be more familiar but maybe no cheaper.
  • Ultra pencil grip might be helpful to some children.         This cheaper pack with just 3 grips looks similar.        Note that some packs are for larger pencils.          Triangular grip  is another option.        There is also a mixed pack if you want to try several types.           This discussion mentions their use among.
  • Here is a video tutorial setting out several aids – including pencil grips.
  • This video tutorial demonstrates the sock method of teaching proper pencil grip.
  • This video tutorial demonstrates writing 3 letters of the alphabet. There are more related videos in the margin, too.
  • Some mums provide a sloping board/surface to write on.
  • Letter dominoes is a game that is easy to make yourself.

Doc iconSpecific Learning Difficulties

SpLD is an umbrella term used to cover a range of frequently co-occurring difficulties, more commonly:

  • Dyslexia
  • Dyspraxia / DCD
  • Dyscalculia
  • D.D / A.D.H.D

Specific Learning Difficulties (or SpLDs), affect the way information is learned and processed. They are neurological (rather than psychological), usually run in families and occur independently of intelligence. They can have significant impact on education and learning and on the acquisition of literacy skills.

In general, a student may be diagnosed with a SpLD where there is a lack of achievement at age and ability level, or a large discrepancy between achievement and intellectual ability.

See also an analytical view

Tourettes

Tourette’s syndrome is a condition that causes a person to make involuntary sounds and movements called tics.        See introduction

  • Tourettes Action website seems to be the go-to place for all things Tourettes.        Click icon on the left to browse.         They have a Find support menu.
  • The Lincolnshire support group meets in Lincoln and Grantham.
  • Discussions :  Netmums         Tourettes & Aspergers
  • Facebook videos might be worth a look.

Swallowing difficulties

Click icon to view help sheet for people with Autism about Dysphagia by a speech and language therapist.

More conditions

Here are a couple of help sheets about epilepsy and mental health for people on the autistic spectrum from the UK research charity Autistica.

See also Epilepsy ActionWebsite             Information           Help & support

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GAIN logo - thumbnailPlease be aware that we, at GAIN, are not qualified to give advice.              See disclaimer.

 

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