Autism information roadshows coming to a town near you!
Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, in partnership with the Northern Health & Social Care Trust, are hosting Autism Information Roadshows over the next few months.
The roadshows will bring together key organisations and support services such as Autism NI, Disability Action, NOW Group, NIHE and Children’s Law Centre to provide a range of useful information to autistic young people and their families.
The roadshows are just one part of a bigger initiative, working towards creating an Autism Friendly Borough.
This initiative is an action under the Health & Wellbeing theme of ‘Putting People First’ - Mid and East Antrim’s Community Plan, which has a vision to work towards becoming a strong, vibrant, safe and inclusive community, where people work together to improve the quality of life for all.
Community Planning Partners are working to create a fully inclusive environment, raising awareness and understanding, creating opportunities for autistic young people and their families to feel welcome and offering open access to services and activities.
The Roadshows are taking place on the following dates:
•Town Hall, Carrickfergus
Tuesday 31st January 2023 - 6pm to 9pm
•Harryville Community Centre, Ballymena
Friday 17th February 2023 - 2pm to 5pm
•Market Yard, Larne
Saturday 25th March 2023 - 2pm to 5pm
There will also be a wellness session for parents at the Carrickfergus roadshow and specialised play sessions at the Ballymena and Larne events.
Councillor Matthew Armstrong said he is “Delighted that Council continues to strive for Autism friendliness and proud that our working group continues to deliverfantastic initiatives accessible to all of our citizens right across the Borough. With valuable input from our partners at HSCT and other key stakeholders, these Roadshows will be a fantastic resource for families seeking information and support with a range of issues and challenges - I trust they will be found to be a great benefit.”
Councillor Cheryl Brownlee added “I am delighted that the Autism Roadshow will be in Carrickfergus. As a parent myself at the start of the process, I understand how difficult and overwhelming it can be.
"Mid and East Antrim Borough Council have been working to improve the accessibility of their services, increasing training to support staff and businesses in building their understanding of autism and how they can make adaptations to support autistic customers and their families - as well as the new sensory pod in Legg Park,which I hope to see open in the very near future for all to enjoy.”
Alongside Council’s roadshows, the Braid in Ballymena will be the venue for a touring exhibition entitled ‘Creative Voices: What Autism Means to Me’ between 16 March – 15 April. This free exhibition showcases over one hundred pieces of art work created by autistic post-primary pupils from across Northern Ireland. It is being toured by the Education Authority Autism Advisory and Intervention Service (AAIS).
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