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An Autism Diagnosis - What Next?

<a href="/articles/an-autism-diagnosis-what-next">An Autism Diagnosis - What Next?</a>

On 13th May 2013 we are proud to be offering an exclusive webinar (online seminar) invitation to happychild visitors. Authors of the just-released Australian Autism Handbook will be presenting a one hour seminar on what to look for in an early intervention program and how to get funding and support. Five attendees will also receive a copy of the Australian Autism Handbook. Read full article

In a Different World, You Wouldn't Call Your Son Retarded

<a href="/blogs/2013/03/20/in-a-different-world-you-wouldnt-call-your-son-retarded">In a Different World, You Wouldn&#039;t Call Your Son Retarded</a>

by Meg Evans: I met you last weekend when I was leaving a crowded shopping centre. Your son, who might have been about ten years old, suddenly did a cartwheel in front of me while I was walking to my car. You took hold of your son’s hand and then glanced toward me and apologised by saying, “He’s retarded, sorry.” ...I have always believed in the power of stories to shape the future. In that spirit, I’ve composed a vignette describing another parking lot encounter, which takes place in the year 2025. Read full article

Giving Students with Autism a Creative Chance

<a href="/blogs/mihiriudabage/2013/03/19/giving-students-with-autism-a-creative-chance">Giving Students with Autism a Creative Chance</a>

At the Creativity Project event in Sydney last week, Professor Sandra Jones takes the stage, followed closely by her co-presenter, author, Lincoln P. Jones. Their topic is 'How educators can help and inspire young people and develop their creativity' and they have travelled a journey to find those answers together. Read full article

Breaking News - We Had Birthday Party Success

<a href="/blogs/benisonoreilly/2013/03/07/breaking-news-we-had-birthday-party-success">Breaking News - We Had Birthday Party Success</a>

Recently the Huffington Post featured an article called The Upside of Autism by Jackie Morgan MacDougall. It opened with these lines: "People often talk about the difficulties associated with parenting a child with autism..." MacDougall’s article rang many bells with me. Once you’ve stared into the abyss - as I did once when Joe, my then 3-year-old son with autism, was assessed as having moderate-to-severe developmental delay - any achievement, any milestone, is celebrated with extra fervour. Read full article

Reporting on Gun Crimes? Leave Autism Out of It

<a href="/blogs/benisonoreilly/2013/01/25/reporting-on-gun-crimes-leave-autism-out-of-it">Reporting on Gun Crimes? Leave Autism Out of It</a>

I have an 11-year-old son with autism. His lack of social understanding means he can occasionally be insensitive; he embarrassed me the other day by loudly pointing out the “fat lady” at the supermarket. He’s also the sweetest kid in the world. For no particular reason he will hug me and say, I love you.” Our son is socially naive, a babe in the wood; much more likely to experience hurt than to hurt others. When the dreadful news of the Sandy Hook massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, came through I crossed my fingers and hoped the words ‘autistic’ or ‘Asperger’s’ would not enter the equation, as they had after the 2007 Virginia Tech shootings. Read full article

An Argument for Using Science in the Treatment of Autism

<a href="/articles/an-argument-for-using-science-in-the-treatment-of-autism">An Argument for Using Science in the Treatment of Autism</a>

If Autism Spectrum Disorders are not treated with evidence-based interventions, it’s estimated that individual lifetime care costs could be as high as $US3.2million. Professor Karola Dillenburger from Queen’s University Belfast says governments investing in early, evidence-based intervention will be saving money for their communities and improving the chances of a child reaching their full potential. This article looks at the argument that parents should focus on evidence-based behavioural science to treat children with an ASD. Read full article

Changes to Autism Diagnostic Criteria - What Does this Mean for Families?

<a href="/blogs/yvettevignando/2012/09/19/changes-to-autism-diagnostic-criteria-what-does-this-mean-for-famili">Changes to Autism Diagnostic Criteria - What Does this Mean for Families?</a>

Benison O"Reilly, co-author of the Australian Autism Handbook, and Yvette Vignando appeared on Mornings on Channel 9 to talk about the changes to diagnostic criteria for children with autism - and more generally, about what is known about the risk factors for Autism Spectrum Disorders. Read full article

Early Intervention Funding for Children with Autism

<a href="/blogs/yvettevignando/2012/03/21/early-intervention-funding-for-children-with-autism">Early Intervention Funding for Children with Autism</a>

This segment on Mornings on Channel 9 discusses the benefits of accessing early intervention for children with autism. The recommended minimum number of hours for early intervention is 20 per week but Australian government funding does not cover these significant costs. What can families do? Read full article

Not Crushing the Dreams of My Young Video Game Creator

<a href="/blogs/nikkimoff/2012/03/05/not-crushing-the-dreams-of-my-young-video-game-creator">Not Crushing the Dreams of My Young Video Game Creator</a>

For a couple of months last year my then 8 year old son had an obsession with inventing a new video game. He expected to be able to dictate to me over my shoulder for a few hours on our home computer and ‘voila!’ - we would have a brand new highly-functioning, multi-level, multi-platform video game to distribute to the market at large. Then he wanted to be entered into the Guinness Book of World Records as the youngest child to create a video game. Read full article

Educating School Children about Autism

<a href="/articles/educating-school-children-about-autism">Educating School Children about Autism</a>

A 2007 study found that 1 in 160 Australian children has an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The majority of these children will be educated in mainstream schools, so it’s likely there will be at least one child on the spectrum - and quite possibly more - attending your son or daughter’s school ... Autism Awareness, one of Australia’s leading autism education and advocacy organisations, decided it was time they did something to help. Using a $300,000 grant awarded to them by the former NSW government, they have produced a short film about autism, targeted at 8 to14 year old children. Read full article