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Conference offers help on autism
4:50pm Thursday 21st March 2013 in News
SWINDON is to host a major conference and networking event for those who want to help people with an autistic spectrum condition.
The one-day conference, called Effective Support for People with Autism Spectrum Conditions, is being organised by SEQOL, which runs the autism diagnostic service in Swindon for adults. It will offer a chance to meet regional and national professionals and others involved with people with ASC, and learn from their knowledge and experience.
Speakers will include the CEO of the National Autistic Society, Mark Lever and Sue Smith, SEQOL researcher and professional autism lead, as well as the Department of Health lead for autism, Michael Swaffield.
Delegates will have the opportunity to share their views and experiences with Mr Swaffield, letting them help to shape future government policy around ASC.
Sue Smith said the conference will not assume pre-existing knowledge of ASC, but will focus on the most up-to-date research and approaches, presented by experienced practitioners or by people who have ASC themselves.
One out of every 100 people could have a form of autism, although some people are well into middle-age before they suspect they are autistic. SEQOL’s oldest client at the autism diagnosis service is in his eighties.
Many people with the condition never seek diagnosis or require support, but there are others who need to understand why they are ‘different’ so they can get on with their lives, and so that their family and friends can understand why they sometimes feel that way.
“Something may happen in their lives, usually a significant event, such as losing a job or the breakdown of a personal relationship that lead them or their families to believe they are autistic,” said Sue.
“Perhaps their children have been diagnosed with the condition and they recognise similarities with their own behaviour. It’s recognised that it can be a genetically-based condition. Or perhaps they are having problems at work – maybe they feel misunderstood by their colleagues or employers.
“This conference will be a fantastic opportunity for people with an interest in ASC to explore the wide range of research and experience that is now out there, and take from it whatever they need.”
Effective Support for People with Autism Spectrum Conditions is being held on June 11 from 9am to 4.30pm at the South Marston Mercure Hotel.
Standard delegate rates are £179 per person, but there is an early bird rate of £149 for bookings before March 31.
There is no charge for people who have ASC, and no charge for anyone supporting them to attend.
Family/student rates are £89 inc VAT, but anyone who finds this cost a barrier should call 01793 466712.
For more information on the conference or the autism diagnostic service email email@example.com or call 01793 466712.