These are some of the websites and books that have really helped me over the past year. They are definitely not comprehensive – remember I have a 2.5 year old toddler so I have a definite bias towards particular types of pages. For a more comprehensive resources list I recommend going on to the Autism Awareness Australia website and scrolling through all their offerings.
Autism Awareness Australia – a fantastic NGO that aims to provide information, empower and advocate on behalf of people on the spectrum. This website has all the resources you’ll need for all stages of life. Run by an autism mum/ABA therapist because we’re pretty cool.
Carers Australia – explains the NDIS to carers, including how to prepare for it and contains planning resources.
First Signs – a site educates parents, doctors, and other care givers about the earliest sign of potential developmental needs and importance of early intervention
KidloLand : a great App for kids that involves interactive nursery rhymes, games and learning to read. Specifically geared for kids with autism.
National Autistic Society – U.K.-based site devoted to raising awareness and providing guidance on ASD. Site also contains some good information on girls/women with ASD
National Institute of Health – USA based site with up to date autism info, stats and resources
Raising Children Network – many articles on autism and how to deal with various behaviours. Also fantastic list of all therapies available and a ranking of them in terms of how much research has been done and how useful they are.
Research Autism – Provides info about some of the issues, problems and challenges facing individuals as well as info about a wide range of treatments, therapies and services used to help them
Sesame Street and Autism – great website with resources for parents of children with autism, including games, daily routine cards and social stories
Tony Attwood – Well respected author, psychologist and international speaker on Asperger’s and ASD
Tuck.com – a great resource for help with sleep disorders and problems
In a different key: The Story of Autism by Caren Zucker and John Donvan
Let Me Hear Your Voice: by Catherine Maurice
Life, Animated: A Story of Sidekicks, Heroes, and Autism by Ron Susskind
Making Peace with Autism by Susan Senator
Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism by Steve Silberman
Any book at all by Temple Grandin
The Complete Autism Handbook by Benison O’Reilly and Kathryn Wicks
The Reason I Jump: The Inner Voice of a Thirteen-Year-Old Boy with Autism by Naoki Nigashida
Where to Find Toys
Kmart/Target/$2 shop – always go here first, because CHEAP! . My son seems to particularly like Fisher Price. Whatever works! You can do your shopping online and save on delivery fees if you buy a few things at once.
www.specialneedstoys.com.au – fantastic website, I never go on there because if I do I spend at least $300 on massive amounts of very useful sensory therapy toys. Everything you can imagine or ever need. My neurotypical niece and nephews also love all the toys I have bought off here (especially the spiky squishy balls but then WHO WOULDN”T?)
https://www.kidsmusictoys.com.au: title says it all really. Lots of really great kids music toys, some appropriate for very young children without small parts, and other more complex ones for older children. I have kept this place in business single handedly over the last six months. I think I’ve bought three different types of drums, alone.
http://www.pecsaustralia.com: For all picture communication needs
http://kidstuff.com.au: If I can’t find what I need anywhere else I will find it at Kidstuff. They have the most amazing, and well made, toys here. At least three times more expensive than an equivalent item anywhere else but also less likely to break after three uses.
Amazon: I know the delivery fees are huge, and they really creep up on you if you’re not paying attention. But if you’re really stuck for ideas and can’t find anything anywhere else, Amazon will probably have three copies of things you didn’t even know you could get.
The best source of information on ABA therapy, in Australia, is the Autism Behavioural Intervention Association. They have a lot of information on their website about how ABA therapy works. They also have a list of ABA service providers, as well as some things to consider when choosing a provider.
My little boy attends the Lizard Centre. They are currently located in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide, and run three day training workshops. They offer ABA programs, speech pathology, social skills groups, in-home behavioural therapists and parent training workshops. For information on ABA Therapist Training or to attend a workshop have a look at their website. Please note that your child does not have to have an autism diagnosis to attend there or to access funding from NDIS to pay for their programs.
Some Paediatricians that Specialise in Autism and Developmental Delay
Please note there are a lot of cranks operating under the general autism and care of it umbrella. Just through a google search many come up and look respectable but are in fact using completely unproven theories, some closely allied with the anti-vaxx movement. Generally, if anything about ‘biomedical intervention’ is mentioned – stay away. Do not touch with a ten foot pole. These treatments have never been proven to work in any kind of academic journal, they are currently complete and total rubbish. These people prey on parents when they are at their most desperate and vulnerable. They are also very expensive. Stay away.
Bankstown and Fairfield: Dr Sam Nassar
Bondi Junction: The Children’s Clinic Dr Suzie Gardner
Chatswood: Sydney Kids Clinic
Hurstville: Dr Chris Elliot
Hurstville: Sydney Paediatrics Dr Karen Knoll
North Strathfield: The Paediatric Specialists Dr Yvette Vella, Dr Justine Noble and Dr Jane Son
Pennant Hills: Child Development Paediatrics Dr Sandra Johnson