Neurodiversity Celebration Week 2024

 

This week is #neurodiversitycelebrationweek
Siena Castellon MBE founder of this campaign and one of our charity Ambassadors received an MBE for her Neurodiversity Advocacy!
I remember Siena sharing her idea with me when it was just a seed. Siena is an amazing and talented individual.

 

‘Together, we’ll embrace & celebrate neurodiversity in all aspects of life. ‘

 

www.neurodiversityweek.com

Watford FC Hosts AKO Fun Day: Inclusive Tour for Families with Autistic Children 

 

We had such a lovely day at our 3rd AKO fun day and tour at Watford football club. It’s a great opportunity for parents and carers to explore the ground at their own pace and in a quieter environment without being judged.

 

The tour was very autism friendly and we even had a volunteer who was on the spectrum who played for Watford ladies. We started off the tour at the club’s fantastic sensory room. A room that can be booked on match days where families can watch the game from a contained, quiet space that gives magnificent views of the whole ground but away from all the hustle and bustle.

 

Along the way, we met Ann Swanson who has the family enclosure named after her for her contributions to the club. She founded the family enclosure to create a safer environment for families watching the game and was also the leader of the junior Hornets.
The tour ended in the dressing room where they were surprised with the appearance of 3 of WFC’s players –
Tom Ince, Edo Kayembe, and Jack Grieves.

 

Many of the youngsters that came expressed their desire to come back to the ground for a real game and this is exactly what it’s all about. We had so many lovely messages thanking us for a wonderful day, it makes it all worthwhile. We hope to do another one soon as this proves so popular that we now have a waiting list for the next one. Thank you to Watford FC for their continued support and paving the way to make the club autism friendly.

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Sean Kennedy presents: EHC Needs Assessments

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Sean Kennedy presents: EHC Needs Assessments

The test that is applied once an EHC needs assessment is completed
How relevant case law can assist when applying the test
Things to consider when writing a parental contribution

This seminar will look at the test that is applied once an EHC needs assessment is completed and this will be done alongside a review of the relevant caselaw. All of this information will be used when considering what a parental contribution should look like.

This will take place on Tuesday 10th Jan at 7.30 PM.
Click here to book your place

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JAAQ 

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JAAQ is a new mental health social media platform and brings together world-leading mental health professionals to answer thousands of questions about all kinds of topics.

Anna was approached by Danny Gray and the JAAQ team to be one of the 50 first content creators for this new Social Media Mental Health platform since Anna Kennedy Online are recognised as a charity that support many families of Autistic children and adults.

JAAQ were so blown away by Anna Kennedy’s enthusiasm and drive that they agreed to film the well-known performing arts show Autism’s got Talent this year. They have also agreed to film next year’s show since they said this was a fantastic platform for talented autistic children and adults to showcase their talent.

Kieron Lee one of Anna’s charity Ambassadors and past Autism’s got Talent performer launched his debut single at the JAAQ Mental Health launch in Central London last week.

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Kieron shared:

“It has been an absolute honour and privilege to work with JAAQ on the official music video for my debut single ‘NYN.’ I cannot thank the team of lads for believing in me and making someone who often feels misunderstood so comfortable and appreciated.

The team at JAAQ have inspired my drive to raise more awareness surrounding mental health and autism, these people are helping shape a better tomorrow and it is so inspiring.

The official music video was premiered at the JAAQ launch and the experience was surreal. I was so proud and honoured to be a part of something that will change the lives of so many.

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I’d like to thank Ash & Yoni who stuck with me through this entire journey, two of the nicest people I have ever met. I can’t wait for what the future has in store.

It has been an honour to do this alongside, Anna Kennedy for whom I am super thankful.

Please check out the video on the official platform of JAAQ and browse the platform and get advice on a huge range of topics from world experts”.

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Anna Kennedy shared:

“I am so proud of our Charity Ambassador Kieron Lee he blew everyone away at the launch event. His voice filled the room leaving many in tears. Congratulations to Danny and Team JAAQ. an amazing Mental Health and Social Media Platform. The site is now live and will be evolving and populating each week.

I am proud to be a content creator of JAAQ. This is an amazing platform to spread the word about the work of our charity and to raise autism awareness and acceptance through my experience as a founder of autism services, founder of Anna Kennedy Online autism charity, and my own personal experience as a mother and wife.

Lots more to come on this Social Media platform and the perfect place to ‘Just Ask a Question’. This is going to be a fantastic platform for our charity sharing our work.  It is completely free no costs involved and such a useful resource.

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Register with JAAQ to keep updated www.jaaq.org

Born Anxious are delighted to be supporting Kieron Lee on the launch of his debut EP, ACRONYMS and single, NYN. We are delighted to support Kieron with a collaborative range of clothing to endorse the new EP and single. As Kieron is an ambassador for the AKO charity, £2.50 from every sale will be going directly to the charity. Click here to purchase a Born Anxious Kieron Lee ACRONYMS T-Shirt

The debut single from Kieron Lee is titled “NYN”, taken from his upcoming album “Acronyms”.
You can download on Spotify or Amazon: 

Kieron Lee “NYN” Click here to download from Spotify

Kieron Lee “NYN” Click here to download from Amazon

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Eilish Smith performs at Autisms Got Talent 2022 in London  

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Talented singer Eilish Smith, Year 8, performed a beautiful rendition of ‘Quiet’ from Matilda the Musical, in front of a live audience at the Autisms Got Talent 2022 show, which was held at the Mermaid Theatre in London…. Click here to read the full article

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Anna Kennedy Online wins Charity of the Year!

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The European Diversity Awards recognise achievement across all strands of diversity: race, age, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity and belief. Launched in 2010, the European Diversity Awards are now firmly established as the continent’s most prestigious and widely respected diversity event.

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Attended by leading lights from business, politics and the media, the EDA recognises those individuals and organisations whose outstanding leadership has made a genuine difference to the equality, diversity and inclusion agenda.

Linda Riley, European Diversity Awards founder, said:

“These awards exist to shine a light on those who have worked tirelessly to champion diversity and inclusion during what has been an extremely challenging year, particularly with the cost-of-living crisis and spiralling food and fuel costs. Every deserving winner has made real achievements in race, age, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity or religious belief over the past year.”

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Winner of European Diversity Charity of the Year 2022 was Autism Charity Anna Kennedy Online. The sponsor for this category was Optum who donated £5k to the charity. Anna founded the charity in 2009 to support and share information to the many families and adults diagnoses with autism.

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Anna said: “Ever since I started my own journey with my own sons Patrick and Angelo in 1999 and wanting to help and support those who like them have a diagnosis of Autism I am frustrated and disappointed with the lack of facilities and support across the UK. This is why it is so important that all of us who are involved with the autism community should continue to fight hard and make our voices heard in improving educational and other resources for autistic individuals, their families and carers.”

Anna shared “I was overwhelmed to receive Charity of the Year at the prestigious European Diversity Awards . I couldn’t do what I do without my PA Lisa Robins and my fantastic team of volunteers who have been with me for many years giving up their precious time to support the charity. We are a small charity made up of autistic role models, parents, siblings, and individuals who want to improve the quality of life for autistic individuals so they can make their mark in this world just like everyone else”.

Supporting the event were Dr Ranj, Emilie Sande,Claire Sweeney and BBC News Jane Hill.
Photo credit: Jonathon Phang 

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Breaking down the EHC needs assessment

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Sean Kennedy presents: Breaking down the EHC needs assessment including what evidence is required and what test and other factors should be applied when a local authority makes a decision.

This will take place on Tuesday 6th December 2022 at 19:30

Click here to book your place

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Awesometistic presents A Million Blankets

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The Autistic Adoptee – A Story about a boy from a troubled childhood to AUTISTICALLY AWESOME. It’s time to take off some of the blankets and show ‘it’s ok to be me!’

“Richie overcomes huge challenges presented to him by the ignorance to his condition, and ultimately emerges triumphant. His poignant and optimistic story is a must watch”

In Richie’s own words: “Growing up without a diagnosis of ASD was difficult to say the least; struggling immensely with everyday life”.

Not understanding where he fit into this world. carrying out different behaviours to others, but at the time he didn’t understand why he was doing them but really struggled to stop. Sharing his life through a story of how he seen the world growing up around him, struggling to understand his adoption and feeling rejected.

I felt like a freak for 34 years. I have felt throughout my life I have had to hide away and compress everything deep inside – resulting in some very low points in my life. Mix in my adoption and child abuse, it has been a roller coaster, that I’m keen to share. “I have learned a lot about myself and became very self-aware. I feel this puts me in a very good position to share my story from my heart of my life growing up.

Now it’s time to take the blankets off!

Click here to download the leaflet.

Please note, this show contains:Discussions around the topics of self-harm, overdose, adoption, rape, eating disorder, gambling.

Click here to book your tickets

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Buy your AKO Charity Christmas Cards 2022! (UK Only)

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Each of the previous winning designs from our Christmas Card competition, our talented supporters Chris Rathbone and Natalie Sherriffs, along with previous creations from the talented Patrick Steele-Bodger and our wonderful Ambassador Harvey Price – are all included in each pack of assorted cards.

Please complete your details and payment using the form below:-

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Toby Richardson – my experience at Autism’s Got Talent 2022

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Toby said that we was so grateful of the opportunity to perform to such a large audience and gave us a 10/10. He sang ‘Delilah ‘ and received a standing ovation. Both Toby and his Mum shared that they had the best weekend and loved everything about the experience.

Here is more about Toby:
Toby is 25 and is diagnosed autistic and has ADHD. He lives and breathes everything musical. He is an amazing person who loves creating stuff, dancing, singing, making his own music, and playing musical instruments. He loves going to concerts, playing at open mic nights, and helping to run a band workshop.

Toby is quite famous where he lives for his music and plays wherever he goes. Toby is quite comfortable on roller skates, barefoot up a tree or in his den. Toby also has a degree in computer games tech and loves gaming, comic con and Warhammer.

Click here – to apply for Autism’s Got Talent 2023

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Anna Kennedy Online
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