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Bridge Forward Training Programme

Recently, we at AsIAm obtained funding from the Late Late Toy Show Appeal to the amount of €100,000 to fund our Bridge Forward project: the newest of our autism training programmes.

The Bridge Forward programme was designed in response to the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on community participation for autistic children and their families. This project was developed with a series of 6 workshops that focus on the fundamentals of child development as outlined by the International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) which was approved by the World Health Assembly 2001. The ICF model provides a framework for conceptualising body functions and structures, activities (functioning at the level of the individual), the participation of the individual in all areas of life and the environmental factors that affect these experiences.

The aim of this project is to train qualified facilitators (e.g., Speech and Language Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Psychologists, Social Care Workers) in a programme to further upskill the community and social group leaders in working with autistic children and their families in returning to (or indeed beginning to engage in) community participation.

Programme overview

  • 5 facilitators are to be recruited via expression of interest form to go live Thursday 2nd September.
  • Successful applicants will be funded to attend 6 bridge forward workshops.
  • Each workshop will be themed in different areas of child development.
  • Themes include; Function, Family, Friends, Fitness, Fun and Future.
  • Workshop start date: 2nd October

The aims of the workshops will be to upskill communities in strategies promoting positive self-esteem and confidence in autistic children and young people in getting back out into community activities e.g local sports clubs, drama, art and social groups etc.

Each of the facilitators will then train 3 community group leaders in their locality in the Bridge Forward programme.

Interested in applying?

We are now welcoming applications from leaders of social and community groups to apply for the Bridge Forward programme.

A trained group facilitator will work in collaboration with group leaders to provide autistic children and young people with support in participating meaningfully within their community. Each group will receive 6 support workshops and also have access to an online resource hub to support the children and young people on an ongoing basis.


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