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Please Support Homeless Autistic Man and his Dog

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A homeless autistic man and his dog need shelter over the Christmas and New Year period until a suitable flat is available. This gentleman has been sleeping in a tent with his dog for almost 3 months and recently in the freezing cold weather.

Please can you spare £5 towards a room and roof over his head until a suitable place is available in Oxford.

Click here to donate

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SEND in Museums Advocacy Film – an article by our Charity Champion Kellie Barker

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Oscar and I were honoured to take part in a short film made by #SENDinMuseums funded by @acenational.

Museums are very sensory for us and the reasonable adjustments that museums make including the sensory backpacks mean we can adjust Oscar visit even further, meaning we can enjoy a space together as a family.

The film is to promote how museums need to be on the agenda for education and leaker for families of SEND and marks a local school as they explore the Beaney museum in a sensory way.

Personally, museums hold a lot of joy for us they allow Oscar to explore history and nature and feed his sensory diet in a place that is calm, and we have only ever had positive experiences in museums, it’s wonderful to enjoy them together.

Oscar very much enjoyed taking direction during the filming and really enjoyed all the different area of the museum from dinosaurs to Egypt.

The film was commissioned by ace national at Maidstone museums, please watch!

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One tuff muvva and Born Anxious giveaway! 

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One tuff muvva and Born Anxious giveaway! 

@bornanxious and @one.tuff.Muvva have teamed up to offer one of our amazing, super soft, sensory weighted blankets from our ‘stay at home’ range to one lucky winner!

All you have to do for a chance to win is follow the below rules:

🖤 Like and save this post

🖤 Make sure you’re following @one.tuff.Muvva and @bornanxious

Shares don’t count as an extra entry but are very much appreciated 🙏🏼🙌

Giveaway will end on It’s all here the entry closes on 18th at Midnight and winners will be chosen and announced on 19th

Promotion is in no way affiliated with Instagram.

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Charity Ambassador speaks to Anna Kennedy about the build up to Christmas on Womens Radio

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Anna Kennedy’s guest on ‘All things Autism’ was Paul Isaacs talks about Christmas on Womens Radio this week.
Please click here to listen to these amazing shows!

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Anna shared:

“The big day is almost here! I think sometimes families of autistic children are under a lot of pressure to have the best, most magical, day at Christmas, and for a lot of different reasons, it is not always possible for us all.

I am aware lots of families of children with autistic children or adults struggle so it is better to have the very best day we can, under these uncertain times and whatever our circumstances may be .Although Christmas is a very special day for a lot of families, at the end of the day really it is just another day.

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Every year at Christmas as a family it takes a good while to prepare Christmas Dinner. We manage 15 mins at dinner table all together then the boys are gone to have down time and do their own thing. This is what works for them I am sure others have similar experiences. One year we managed 18 mins!!

I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy Holiday, as is traditional. I hope that each and every one of my friends and followers that they are with someone who is special to them, and that Christmas is the best it can be. All the best love Anna and all at Anna Kennedy Online.”

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Paul shared:

“Christmas can be both joyous and potentially challenging time of the year, so here are some guidance on how to aid and support people on the spectrum.

Paul Isaacs

Speaker, trainer, consultant & author

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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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Love on the Spectrum UK

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Our charity Overseas Ambassador Dani Bowman had a positive experience on ‘Love on the Spectrum ‘ in the US. Please click here to read about her experience.

The show is now coming to the UK, pllease see the poster below:

Love on the Spectrum UK

 

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Tips for Understanding Your Classmates with Autism

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When you go to school, you will notice that everyone is different. Sometimes, these differences make it hard to talk to a classmate. Autism is one reason that one in about every 44 students you see each day is not exactly like everyone else. To help, the Autism Hero Awards explains more about what autism is and how to be a good friend to classmates who have this diagnosis.

What Is Autism?

Autism is something that can affect a person’s ability to communicate. Someone with autism might have trouble looking you in the eyes when they talk. Sometimes, they might not talk at all. Some children who have autism might flap their hands around or rock in their chairs, and this can be scary to other kids. But you should know that their behavior is not without reason. Kids with autism can be overwhelmed by the things happening around them. Lights might feel too bright and sounds might be too loud. The rocking, shaking, or tapping — sometimes even yelling or crying — is how they cope with too much input coming into their senses.

One way to understand how they might feel is to think back to a time when your mom or dad turned your light on while you were still asleep. When you opened your eyes, the light was probably uncomfortable. Your first reaction might have been to cover your head, close your eyes tightly, and put your hands over your face. Children with autism might feel this way all the time, and they try to fight these feelings by moving repetitively. It is interesting to note that the same reflex that makes your eyes hurt has been studied as a way to diagnose autism in children.

How Can Parents Help?

There are a lot of ways children with autism can get help from their parents. First, parents will let their teachers know that their child has autism. At home, they might do things like keep their house quiet and avoid painting the walls really bright colors that could hurt the child’s eyes and make it hard to concentrate. Parents often focus on making their homes as stress-free and relaxing as possible for their autistic children. Even simple things like getting rid of clutter or adding greenery (plants and flowers) can make a place far more inviting and comfortable for children with ASD.

Children with autism sometimes have trouble sleeping in their own beds or can’t sleep at all. When this happens, their parents might look for ways to make them comfortable in their bedroom so that they can rest. Children who don’t get enough sleep can be really cranky!

Getting to Know a Child with Autism

If you go to school with a child who has autism, take the time to get to know him or her. You might find that he or she is really interesting. In fact, children with autism or Asperger’s, which is a former term for a level of autism, have a lot in common with geniuses, and are sometimes better able to remember details about things better than everybody else. Don’t be afraid to talk to your classmates, even if they don’t talk like everybody else. It’s easy to misunderstand someone you don’t know. Try to remember that, to them, you are the one who’s different.

The National Autistic Society has a lot of great information about autism, and your own parents and school counselor can help you learn even more. There are even TV shows with characters who have autism. Ask your parents if you can watch an episode; it’s a fun way to learn something new about a misunderstood condition.

Remember, no two people are the same. It is our differences that make us unique. Just like you might be taller – or shorter – than everyone else, someone with autism has their own set of characteristics that makes them the person they are. And if you’re patient, you might be able to get to know that person and make a new friend.

The Autism Hero Awards proudly acknowledges and celebrates people and their accomplishments in the world of Autism. Learn more by exploring our site.

Image via Pixabay

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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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Guinness world record featured in the media – an article by Matthew Akpan

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Hi, my name is Matthew Akpan 33, from Cross gates, Leeds, England I wanted to speak to you about my Guinness world record that I ran in October 2021 as the fastest male marathon dressed as a wrestler (John Cena) I ran for the charity victim support and Bethany’s smile. I recently finished volunteering at the commonwealth games 2022 in Birmingham as a medal presenter at the national exhibition centre.

I grew up in Cross Gates, Leeds, to a Nigerian father who came over to England to study in 1980 and an English black mother whose parents were from Dominica, was educated in Leeds at St Theresa’s primary school and St John Fisher High School in Harrogate and studied Sport at college at Park Lane college (now Leeds city college).  In 2008 I attended Manchester Metropolitan University to study sports leisure and culture, but I failed a module which saw him resit the year. I then failed again and was forced to take a year out of study, and it was at this point I thought there was something holding me back.

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During this time at Crewe, I also lived on my own which I feel increased the onset of my Aspergers. I spoke with my family and discussed the idea that I might have Aspergers, with my mum helping me research the condition, which can cause impaired language and communication skills as well as repetitive or restrictive thinking and behaviour.

In March 2013, I was diagnosed with Aspergers and following a request for support I was able to continue studies at a different university and graduated from Leeds Beckett University in 2015 with a degree in Sport, Leisure and Culture. 

From there I began using my diagnosis to explore myself and get out of my comfort zone.

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Unfortunately, my father died in 2021 from Kidney failure, we watched wrestling for like 20 years and I thought that as a tribute to him and victim support, so I wanted to become a superhero, so I chose John Cena as he has done a lot for children. I thought he would be the best one to do, even though it was not easy it was easy in his style, I ended up with a lot of blisters, scars, and rash burns. It’s difficult for anyone to grieve, but for me I was able to use my condition to get on with life and I got more qualities out of him after he passed away. It was very hard, but because I am a catholic, I feel the Lord got me through.

I can speak three different languages; I link that to the Aspergers. I know my strengths and weaknesses, I know I have talents, I have been able to use my talents. It has projected me to have a Guinness World Record, that most people do not have, the qualities I do have, I have been able to use them and empower them. I see the world differently, because I do things differently, I had to educate people that I do it this way, this is how it is and why I do it. It was quite easy for me to understand having Aspergers, it was a really good way to understand who I was.

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I think the difficulty might have been for the people around me, especially the close ones, it was a bit of a shock to them. My mum adapted but they did not understand it straight away. 

Talking is a big thing, that’s the best way to move forward really,  found in my life, without my parent support I probably wouldn’t be as advanced as I am now. Look for any support that you can, if you feel like you are struggling maybe look for online help, find out a bit more about yourself.”

I also ran my second Guinness world record for the fastest half marathon world record I ran on 8th mMay 2022 in the same costume I teamed with former Hollyoaks actress Bethany Hare, where she raised over 600 pounds for her charity that affiliation I will continue.

It is a children’s charity aiming to set up a safe House where children with disabilities and other struggles can come she aims to raise 300,000, she has already raised over 150,000.

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I currently work 2 jobs and have had reports in the Yorkshire evening post, Leeds Live and a tweet from WWE superstar wrestler John Cena for my efforts and running for a cause. I have been sent a blue peter badge for my efforts this year and Yorkshire evening post have done an article on me. I am in talks at the moment with BBC Sport to become a journalist working for them.

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