Canberra’s  Marymead Autism Centre has thrown its support behind AEIOU Foundation, which is establishing a world-class early intervention service for children with autism in Canberra.

Marymead Autism Centre Manager, Helen Gardner, said Marymead Autism Centre celebrates  diversity, promotes awareness and inclusion and supports people of the Canberra region who are on the autism spectrum, and explained young families with a new autism diagnosis will benefit greatly from the region’s first autism hub, AEIOU Canberra Region

“Through our work with children on the spectrum and their families across the ACT and surrounds, we know that having more resources and options available is a plus for families,” Ms Gardner continued.

AEIOU Canberra Region, which is made possible with $4.3 million in capital funding from the John James Foundation, will facilitate the delivery of early intervention for up to 40 children per year, along with capacity for research and training long-term.

Whilst the build was due to commence earlier this year, Covid-19 and associated disruptions has seen some delays. Construction commenced this week, with the centre now due to open mid-2021. AEIOU Foundation CEO Alan Smith said families can now register their interest for their child to join the centre’s waitlist.

“We recognise that receiving a diagnosis of autism can sometimes be a difficult time, so we want families in the Canberra region to know that we are here to assist them, and available to talk to them about the NDIS support available with the aim of gaining access to our programs,” Mr Smith said.

AEIOU Canberra Region will be located in Garran. The centre will cater for children aged 2 to 6 years who will be supported by a specialist team comprised of Speech Pathologists, Occupational Therapists, Behavioural Therapists and Early Childhood Educators.

“If your child has recently received a diagnosis of autism, or you are currently in the process of obtaining a diagnosis, you can also get in touch with AEIOU about the services offered, including our in-house NDIS support team who help families navigate the NDIS and establish what you may be eligible for in terms of funding. We can also review your current funding and assess whether AEIOU is the right fit for your child, and waitlist them accordingly.

“AEIOU’s service will complement the autism-specific supports already available in the Canberra region, and  we are so pleased to be in the company of such organisations as Marymead Autism Centre who offer great support and outreach for people with autism and their families or carers, as well as professionals. We encourage anyone in the Canberra region needing support to reach out to Marymead as well,” Mr Smith said.

For more information on Marymead Autism Centre and the support they offer via information and referrals, workshops, support and social groups, go to www.marymeadautismcentre.org.au

For more information and to complete your expression of interest to join the waitlist for AEIOU Canberra Region, go to www.aeiou.org.au/canberra-region  or call 1300 273 435.