Autism: Local advice resources

Children, young people and families that are experiencing mild or temporary difficulties or are adjusting to life circumstances may benefit from access to appropriate advice without needing to seek help or more help.

Children, young people and families experiencing chronic, fluctuation or severe difficulties where they are currently able to manage their own health and/or are on the road to recovery may benefit from access to appropriate advice without needing to seek help or more help.

Autism is a complex, lifelong developmental disability that typically appears during early childhood and can impact a person’s social skills, communication, relationships, and self-regulation. Autism is defined by a certain set of behaviours and is a “spectrum condition” that affects people differently and to varying degrees.

Getting the right support in early can help to improve a child or young person’s quality of life. There is a range of support and advice available prior to diagnosis that can support with some of the symptoms that affect how a child lives day-to-day. The following resources focus on autism generally and can help you understand and cope with some of the difficulties that arise with this condition.

Top tips for parents

These top tips have been created by parents of Swindon children who have ADHD that you may find useful as a starting point:

  1. Read the Information leaflet that you were provided with by the Paediatrician following diagnosis. This provides you with links to useful local and national websites to help you understand your child’s diagnosis.  
  2. Join an online support group.
    The SEND Room is an online Facebook support group for parents and carers of children and young people aged 0-25 in Swindon who have any Special Educational Needs and Disabilities in Swindon.
    Swindon SEND Families Voice is a group of volunteer parents and carers working together to improve services for children/young adults with disabilities and additional needs in Swindon.
    A Support Group for Parents (Swindon Autism and ADHD) is a group for all parents and carers of children with ADHD conditions. It is a place for us to ask questions, find support from others in a similar position and to have a rant, cry or share that achievement.
  3. Attend a peer support group.
    Branches is a local support group open to all parents and carers of children and young people with any special educational needs or disability, aged 0-25. 
    STEP (Swindon) is a registered charity providing a safe and supportive environment for children and young people aged 7 to 18. 
  4. Contact Aiming High for advice on accessible activities, social groups, short breaks and respite
  5. Register with Swindon Carers can help with benefit advice, carers support, signposting, young carers and run family activities.
  6. Get your child a Hidden Disability Lanyard from your GP practice or Great Western Hospital.
  7. Take a look at the autism positive practice visits reports to schools to give you some ideas of ways that children can be supported within a school environment.