The 23nd Lincoln Annual Autism Conference commences the week beginning Monday 22nd November, with the last presentation finishing on Friday 26th November. The Guest Speakers are as follows:
Geoff Evans – Monday 22nd November
‘Does the lives of autistic individuals need to be as traumatic as it often is?’
Over the last few years there has been a growing awareness of the trauma experienced by autistic children, young people and adults. Whilst this can be a result of life events experienced by non autistic individuals, for many autistic individuals this can be linked to their autism. This can include their sensory experiences, executive functioning and other areas impacted upon by autism. However, for many it can also result from not having their needs recognised, understood and met. For many, another factor can be their felt need to mask their autism and experiences in order to fit in.
In this talk Geoff discusses the causes of trauma for autistic individuals and how an informed approach that is also underpinned by proven good autism practice can result in significant improvements in the autistic person’s quality of life. Geoff makes use of the accounts of young people he has been supporting recently and also the growing research and written personal accounts of autistic individuals.
Becky Lyddon at Sensory Spectacle – Wednesday 24th November ”Becoming a Sensory Detective’
Research says 1 in 20 people have sensory processing difficulties. That’s HUGE!
It also means there are likely to be students or family members who don’t have an official diagnosis as their needs haven’t been identified yet.
In this session, I will take you through how we can become a detective to recognising and understand the sensory needs of someone with SPD, what certain characteristics mean, like chewing on things, squeezing things, covering ears etc. and how we can best support them throughout their day.
Elita Cozens – Thursday 25th November
‘Moving towards independence and preparing for adulthood’
Young people and their families are faced with big changes, at school leaving age (Post 16) in planning for the future. Preparing for Adulthood can be a very daunting time for families of young people with additional needs. Parents and carers have to make decisions, preparing young people to be a part of their community, finding a job, friendships and relationships, keeping safe and healthy, living independently.
This session aims to guide families through the maze that is transitions and preparing for adulthood. It will help parents and carers to consider how young people can move forward in a positive way. The session will also explore the range of services and support available to young people and their families, navigating opportunities in Post 16. Signposting and resources to enable families to plan for the future, ensuring required support is timely, will also form a part of the information and advice.
Post 16 and preparing for adulthood case studies will be examined to highlight some strategies families can use in planning and helping their young person to achieve life outcomes. The transition from Children to Adult Services will also be outlined.
Transitions Quality and Audit Officer
Lincolnshire County Council
Dr. Wenn B. Lawson – Friday 26th November ‘Gender and Sexuality in Autism’
Gender and sexuality are different things. Both gender and sexuality may be experienced differently by the autistic (AS) population when compared to the allistic population. In autism our brain is single focussed and not traditionally bound to being socialised in ways the allistic population experiences. This has implications for gender and sexual development. To date the research on gender and sexuality in autism is scanty.
The idea that males and females experience sexuality and gender differently in autism, compared to the allistic population, is not knew but, what will this mean for diagnosis, individual development of sexual and gender identities as well as how to support this diverse population?
This presentation explores these issues and more.