Autism expert comes to Maitland

CatholicCare Social Services HunterManning, in partnership with the Federation of Parents and Friends Association in the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle, invited Dr Tony Attwood to present a free information session in Maitland for carers, parents and teaching staff of children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).

Dr Attwood is a clinical psychologist who has specialised in ASD since he qualified as a clinical psychologist in England in 1975 and is renowned worldwide for his work. He currently has his own private practice, is an adjunct professor at Griffith University, Queensland and a senior consultant at the Minds & Hearts Clinic in Brisbane. As a published author, Dr Attwood has been invited to be a keynote speaker at many Australasian and International Conferences.

He presents all over the world and is a prolific author of scientific papers and books on the subject.

It was an absolute privilege to have him present to our community on topics including;

  • Making Friends: Strategies to improve social understanding and friendship skills,
  • The latest research in Autism Spectrum Disorders.

In addition to offering insight and information, Dr Attwood was also available to answer questions at both these sessions.

CatholicCare and the Federation of Parents and Friends Association took the unique step of offering complimentary registration so that we could instill a greater understanding and awareness of ASD and consequently provide greater support to the local ASD community.

Registrations was open to parents, carers of students and staff from Catholic schools in the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle as well as to parents, carers and clients of CatholicCare Social Services HunterManning and their families.

“Having been interested in Autism Spectrum Disorders for nearly 50 years, I’m passionate about sharing my understanding and working with parents and professionals to help children and adults who have autism,” said Dr Attwood.

“In the last few years I have learned so much more about Asperger’s syndrome, especially the value of special interests in the daily lives of those who have Asperger’s syndrome, relationships where one partner has Asperger’s syndrome and the characteristics of girls and women who have Asperger’s syndrome.”

The event was well attended with over 200 people registering, and many had the opportunity to ask Dr Attwood questions providing them with immense insight into their experiences with ASD.

CatholicCare provides a thorough Autism Assessment Service for children, adolescents and adults utilising gold standard assessment tools.

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