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ACN NEWS AND EVENTS
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ACN ACTIVITIES SUSPENDED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
In line with the extended lockdown applicable in Greater Sydney, ACN groups and activities which meet physically are currently suspended. We will advise on resumption pending advice from our government and health authorities. Our online clubs will continue to be available, please see https://www.autismcommunity.org.au/zoom-clubs.html
JOIN US FOR OUR LOCKDOWN LUNCHES
You’re Invited to the Autism Community Network’s LOCKDOWN LUNCHES
Grab your sandwich, pop on the kettle. and join us online for a Carer Catch-up.
Thursday’s during Lockdown;
To register or find out more: https://www.autismcommunity.org.au/zoom-clubs.html
INSIGHT INTO GIVING EVIDENCE AT THE ROYAL COMMISSION
Change for the better can only come through people standing up and recently, ACN mum and volunteer, Lucy Doherty, gave evidence at the Disabilities Royal Commission. We have been fortunate to have Lucy share that experience with us and you can read her insights on our website this week. Just go to https://www.autismcommunity.org.au/royal-commission.html or click on the Disability Royal Commission icon on our website.
Introducing the Autism Community Network’s “Ask and Answer” series.
Got a question about autism?
Join us online or in person each month as we tackle key topics that impact the autism community.
• How do I deal with issues at school?
• How do I understand my child’s behaviour?
• How do I communicate with my non-speaking child?
• How do I hire a support worker?
Join us as we tap into the collective wisdom of the autism community, and the professionals that support us.
Cost: Free (thanks to the generous support of the Blacktown Worker’s Club)
Special Guest: Peta Williams, Clinical Psychologist and Behaviour Expert from Step By Step Interventions
THIS WEEK ON OUR COMMUNITY NOTICEBOARD
On our Community Noticeboard page ACN families are currently seeking a manager to run a Supported Living house in the northwest, as well as Housemate for a young man in the south. For more details see https://www.autismcommunity.org.au/community-posts.html
NEW LOGO FOR ACN
For the last 10 years, the ACN has used a stylised version of the Sydney Harbour bridge as our logo. As we are now a greater NSW organisation and hoping to expand to other states in time, we have launched a vibrant new logo to reflect this. The new design is a stylised honeycomb, as we, as a network of families, work together in the ‘beehive’ for the greater good of the wider autism community. You will start to see our new look appearing across our site and information from this week, we hope you like it as we do.
SCI-FI YOUTH CLUB
Our young people who enjoy our online social clubs each weekday have expressed an interest in bringing up the sci-fi club we ran previously. This group will now run in place of the Music club, every Tuesday. It will be a place to discuss your favourite movies and tv shows, books or anything else scifi related that you want to share.
FACEBOOK MEMBERS ACCESS
If you would like to be added to the ACN Members Support Group in Facebook please do a search request to join and answer the simple questions and I will approve you. Or click on this quick link : https://www.facebook.com/groups/1878452765743783/?ref=share
BULLY PROOF KIDS PROGRAM STARTS IN AUGUST
We were forced to reschedule our Bully Proof Kids program recently, as we had low numbers booked in before its scheduled start. We learnt afterwards that quite a few people had planned to attend, unfortunately, they hadn’t booked.
We have now rescheduled this very popular group to start on 14 August. And run each Saturday morning 10 to 11 am until 20 November. It is a tailored Taekwondo program designed to help children on the spectrum develop skills, confidence, fitness and ways to stay safer. Thanks to funding provided by CLUB RIVERS, the program is provided free to ACN registered children (6 to 18) on the spectrum.
To book, please go to https://www.autismcommunity.org.au/bully-proof-kidz.html
DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS ONLINE NOW FORTNIGHTLY
For all of you who like joining in on our ACN online game of Dungeons & Dragons, we have shifted it to now run every two Sundays instead of the first and third week. Please see our website page (online groups) for dates for rest of this year if unsure.
THE A-LIST IS COMING
The need for young people on the autism spectrum to form social connections is enormous and yet their options are so limited.
44% of young people on the spectrum cannot make friends outside of their families and 66% do not spend time outside of school with friends.
The ACN is delighted to announce that we have partnered with MyCareSpace, Australian Federation of Disability Organisations (AFDO), and Autism Aspergers Advocacy Australia to build an online hub that will help young people with autism find more social options in their local area.
The A-List will be funded by the Australian Government Department of Social Services with a $1 million ILC Grant.
We invite anyone in the community who is passionate about making an impact on the lives of young people with autism to stay up to date on our journey.
Watch the video: https://lnkd.in/gw7RCGX
Official Press Release: https://lnkd.in/gG-3PTq
Get Involved: https://lnkd.in/gWuWQhZ
OATLEY COOKING CLUB IS BACK
We are pleased to be able to bring back our Oatley Cooking Club for kids on the spectrum. It will resume after Covid lockdown ends and run on the first and third Saturday each month. Please see events page on our website for full details and conditions.
ZOOM CLUB SUPERVISORS WANTED
Are you able to oversee a young facilitator on the spectrum for one hour a week online? ACN is proud to provide opportunities for our young adults to build skills running groups online, but we will continue to support them in the background. If you can offer an hour for a day of your choice (groups listed above) we need volunteers who understand autism to tune in between 4 and 5 pm to supervise. Contact Steve for more info
USE ACN FACEBOOK TO CONNECT
We know that some people don’t like using Facebook, but as we all do what we can to adapt to the current situation we’re all in, we want to remind you that our pages are Secret Status Member Access only. We will be using Facebook as well as other social media platforms to help provide more support for families, including opportunities for our kids to connect. If you would like to be invited to join an ACN page, please email firstname.lastname@example.org,au and you will be invited if you are a member.
PLEASE DON’T BOOK IF YOU CAN’T ATTEND
Unfortunately we are seeing a growing number of people who regularly book in to attend ACN events but fail to turn up. This costs others the opportunity to attend and for some groups it also costs us money. Please note that consistent failure to attend a booking will result in exclusion from our events.
REMINDER: PLEASE DO NOT INVITE FRIENDS TO OUR FACEBOOK PAGES
We created our Facebook pages for ACN members who are part of this local community. It is a means for parents and carers of children on the autism spectrum to communicate for mutual support.
Each person who registers is invited to join their preferred pages. Non members will not be given access so please do not invite them.
Our pages has been set up with secret status so that non members cannot search for it or see who is in it or what's being said.
Ask your friends to register and they will be invited, non members will always be rejected. Your privacy is a priority for us.
SCI-FI CLUB FOR OLDER ADULTS
We understand that older adults on the spectrum often feel they are not included to the level of younger people in planning social events. Speaking with a few adults recently, and seeing the popular interest among many for science fiction, we will be launching an online social group later this month as a step in inclusion socially. It will be facilitated by myself (Steve Drakoulis) as a fellow scifi nut. Ideally, adults over 30 can come together and share our interests in films, books, tv shows, even comics and collectibles. If we can get the group to grow, we can then start looking at holding physical catch ups (post Covid) in different areas. If this interests you please join me on 30 July via link on below page
SEEKING MORE DUNGEONS & DRAGONS HOSTS Our online Dungeons and Dragons games have proven very popular with the kids, but to play a decent game, you can only really have a small number of players each time. We don't want anyone to miss out so we are looking for adults who know the game and can host it once or twice a month on a weekend for 2 hrs. If you would like to know more please give Steve a call on 0431724229 for a chat.
GROUP FOR WOMEN ON THE SPECTRUM
NEWS FLASH: we are in the process of setting up a support group for Women on the Spectrum, watch this space for further details
ACTIVITIES FOR GIRLS ON THE SPECTRUM IN THE SOUTH
The Fix-It Sisters Shed, based in the southern suburbs, are providing an opportunity for women n the spectrum of all ages to take part in some creative skills building social activities. They are an amazing group who’ve gotten so much out of seeing one of our young people engage with them so joyfully and now they want to expand such opportunities t others. Please see https://www.facebook.com/fixitsistersshed for more information.
USE OUR FREE NEW COMMUNITY NOTICEBOARD
Are you looking for someone for your adult child on the spectrum to live with? Do you want to promote an enterprise your autistic child is engaged in? Or maybe a call out for others on the spectrum who share your interests? ACN has introduced a Community Noticeboard to help with such things. It will work along similar lines as our Members’ Only Facebook pages, meaning we will use our discretion to promote your item, but via the website. Just send your notice to us at email@example.com and we’ll consider it.
FREE RECREATIONAL ACTIVITIES FOR ACN MEMBERS
If you are registered with the ACN, you are able to access at no charge a number of great activities across Sydney, through Reclink. These include fitness, bowling, dance, Pilates, tennis and more. Just click on the link below or the Reclink button on our website to see all upcoming activities.
ADVERTISE ON ACN
The Autism Community Network provides invaluable support to families in Sydney and beyond who deal with the challenges of autism every day. Our services are free to families and we rely on community support to continue to deliver all the programs and support that we do to so many.
If you would like to promote your business and at the same time support the work that we do, we are now allowing limited advertising across our website. For more information on packages available please click on the red ad mock up below or call us on 0431 724 229 or firstname.lastname@example.org
We are regularly approached to promote credible research programs seeking participants. As we believe the more research out there the better for the future for our children, we post these requests on the Research section of our website. You can view these or respond to them by simply clicking on the black Autism Research button on our website.
“FIRST OPTIONS” PAGE
When my son was diagnosed 13 years ago, everything changed. I needed to learn a lot in a short time. If only there was a document, ideally put together by other parents who knew more than me, to help me get started with navigating the autism world. There wasn’t, so we created one. We have now moved that to our website, in the form of pages providing advice on First Things to Do, Therapy Options, and available programs to consider. It also allows our members to send us your own recommendations so we can keep it current and helpful to those new families in the position every one of us have been in have something to look at. You can find the info in our Services tab on our website. – From Steve Drakoulis