Like any day, today 982 babies will be born in Australia.
15 of those babies will have Autism. I'm just one of those 15 parents.
Autistic kids will struggle their entire lives to fit into this neurotypical world of ours. Things that you & I take for granted such as eating, brushing our teeth, sleeping, learning new skills, sensory processing, playing, making friends & education will be an ongoing struggle for them.
The only difference between my story & the 14 other parents that day is, when our daughter Emilia received her diagnosis, I trained in Early Intervention Therapy for Autism Interventions. It helped not only to reduce the costs but more importantly, it helped me be 100% there to help & support her in regaining the ground she lost when her skills & language faded.
Those early days were so hard, unrelenting & exhausting on so many levels!
Therapy training was intense & gave me skills I could use immediately. It also helped me understand how our child was perceiving the world around her & the struggles she was battling with every day. Sensitivities to fabrics, needing deep pressure to help her self-regulate, opportunities for stimming & burn off energy. It all helped.
Training also gave me a toolkit of proven, evidence-based strategies that therapists use to help & gently guide a child when they are feeling overwhelmed or on the verge of a meltdown. These strategies work on breaking through to a child uising visual communication rather than verbal. It worked wonders!
The Autism support strategies & Autism toolkit helped the child feel in control which promoted their sense of calm. This is what teachers commonly referred to as "the emotional green zone"; what I was doing was calming their minds & emotions to allow them to take in new information & learn. That's pure gold!
At that stage, everything was physical, nothing digital existed. I felt this was a major drawback, not just for myself, but for every parent who didn't have the resources or knowledge to lean on.
I worked on creating an easier digital solution, firstly for myself but as parents I worked with experience and other therapists saw it in action, it quickly gained popularity because of it's speed & ease of use. It made what we were doing in Therapy, to keep a child calm & on task, easy & fast to do ANYWHERE.
I created a toolkit of Visual Supports which an Autism Mom could quickly grab and use in an instant. I create a Kids Visual Schedule, Visual Timers for Kids which breaks down and shows time in way they understand. First Then visual schedules help Autistic Kids transition from an activity they are locked into onto the next activity. This also helps Autism Parents when dealing with Autism Meltdowns which we all know out strip the neurotypical level of temper tantrum.
Word quickly spread amongst parents & therapists outside of my circle, bringing it to the attention of ASD experts. They were pleasantly surprised by how easy a child with Autism could be supported & how easily my new strategies could be used at home or in the classroom to fast track a child's progress.
This was the solution everyone in the Autism Community could benefit from! So with my new techniques, therapist's toolkit & a parent's passion to see faster progress, I started development on the ASD TOOLS app.
The rest is history.
Today I'm proud to say that I'm supporting over 150,000 users worldwide who are helping children have a brighter, easier future.
It's been adopted as the go-to app for many therapists and schools across the english speaking world with USA, Canada & Australia leading the way.
Our journey is easier because we're standing on the shoulders of giants. We are the lucky ones because we have the power & opportunity to creative positive change in the world not just for our kids, but for us as parents too.
If you have any questions, please reach out, I'm here & happy to help.
I hope to be able to help & support you & your child soon.
Cheerio Jo x
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