Girls attending Skills for Staying Safe programme

Skills for Staying Safe Programme Supports Young Girls with ASD

Published Friday, November 15, 2013

girls staying safe programmeAutism NI’s Skills for Staying Safe programme is attracting more girls with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) than may be expected.  The life and social skills training which is embedded within the Lottery Funded programme is supporting young girls in their transition from children to teenagers, report their parents.

As there are more males than females diagnosed with ASD, Autism NI was pleased that half of one of the programmes, for 8-12 year olds were girls.  The high attendance of girls is especially important as research has suggested that girls may be slipping through the net, possibly due to the differing social expectations than boys.

The parents described the social difficulties that their daughters may face in secondary school and hoped that they could develop skills that would help them form positive relationships with their peers.

girls staying safe programmeOne mum commented that she felt that her daughter matured during the time she attended the programme and stated “she loved meeting kids like herself and didn’t feel singled out in any way”.   These feelings were reiterated by other parents, with another saying she felt her daughter “has blossomed since attending the workshops”.

The transition from primary to secondary school can be a worry for all parents but, through attending the programme, the young people may have already started to develop the personal and social skills to make this a bit easier.  A mum observed that this had already began as her daughter “has made more friends and gained confidence” during and since her attendance on the programme.