A Different Aspect
For those families and individuals whose lives have been affected by an autism spectrum disorder, it can be quite a challenge to understand what it means and to obtain the right support, especially when first diagnosed.
Autism Spectrum Australia (otherwise known as Aspect), is a not-for-profit organisation committed to helping people on the autism spectrum achieve their potential. People with the disorder may experience difficulties with social interaction, impaired communication, restricted and repetitive interests and behaviours, and sensory sensitivities. The word ‘spectrum’ is used because the range and severity of challenges people face can vary widely.
Aspect builds the confidence and capacity of people on the autism spectrum, their families and communities. Intervention, understanding and support enable many people living with autism to lead productive lives.
The Aspect Far North Coast Centre for Autism, located in Alstonville in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, provides a unique, single source of information about autism spectrum disorders. The Centre has a borrowing library with nearly 500 borrowing members, and allows people (including parents, siblings, carers and professionals) to borrow materials relevant to a child’s diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder.
With the help of a $4700 grant from FRRR, Aspect has been able to begin restocking the Centre’s borrowing library with up-to-date literature and sensory equipment to assist in the effective dissemination of information on autism spectrum disorders and their treatment in the region.
In updating their library resources, the majority of the funding went towards books, DVD games and technology including an iPad. The Centre was also able to purchase a laminator and paper trimmer with the funds so that parents, carers and therapists can use them to make visual supports for children with autism.
Parents need emotional support, practical strategies and current information to assist their child in learning to manage his or her autism. These library materials are fundamental in helping build capacity by extending the learning environment into the home.
Christa Bayer from Aspect