Welcome news for carers in Scotland

£300,000 package for autism schemes

(UKPA) –

Almost £300,000 has been awarded to 16 organisations to develop new support services for people with autism and their families.

The package includes £84,463 for Richmond Fellowship Scotland to provide training opportunities for family carers.

A total of £10,590 is being given to Barnardo’s Intensive Behaviour Support Service (BIBSS), which will extend its remits to include families with autistic children, while Perth Autism Support is getting £11,000 for children and family support services.

Nine local autism co-ordinators will be recruited in the coming months to determine current service provision for people with autism and develop services to better support people with autism and their families.

The move is part of the Scottish Government and Cosla’s (Convention of Scottish Local Authorities) £13.4 million autism strategy, launched in November to build on improvements to autism services.

Public health minister Michael Matheson said: “We are making good progress towards delivering the goals of the strategy and in the coming months will be recruiting the local autism co-ordinators to improve support services available to people who need them.”

Sovay Adams, of Richmond Fellowship Scotland, said: “We will offer positive behaviour support training and guidance to family carers so that they are better able to deal with the emotional and behavioural challenges that autism brings.”

Koen van der Straeten, of BIBSS, said: “The BIBSS team works with families in their own home to implement strategies to increase the confidence, skills and knowledge of parents and carers of children and young people, and we are delighted that this opportunity can be opened up to more children.”

Angie Ferguson, of Perth Autism Support, said: “The funding will allow us to plan an extensive programme of social activities for all the family and specific therapies for the children diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder.”

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