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Support Directory

Whether you or a loved one has a diagnosis or not, it is sometimes difficult to know where to go for support and guidance. We have collated a list of both national and local organisations that you can connect with if you are looking for more information on ASD or ADHD, or simply want to know that your experience is similar to others', and you are not alone.

Our clinicians have put together an ADHD and Autism Support Directory aimed primarily at parents that contains details of other organisations and groups that relate to ASD or similar conditions. If there is any particular topic that you would find helpful to read about, please get in touch.

Do you have specific questions about ADHD or autism? Search our Resource Centre to view a range of resources written by our clinicians to address useful topics for parents, with additional content aimed at children to help explain their diagnosis.

Further information on Autism Spectrum Disorders

The NHS website provides information on what autism is, coming to terms with the diagnosis, where to get help and support, information for school-aged children and young people, support for transitioning into adulthood, and recommended further reading.

We also recommend that that the family and other professionals working with your child look at the National Autistic Society website.

The National Autistic Society has lots of useful information and resources to support families and children following a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder, including how to discuss the diagnosis with your child. Further information can be found here. Further information and resources on autism can also be found on the National Autistic Society’s ‘strategies and interventions’ page here. Information to help in the preparation for education transitions can be found here.

Further advice for parents and schools can be accessed via the Autism Education Trust.

‘Amazing things happen’ is a short introductory YouTube video about autism, which may be helpful to share with your child’s peers, if needed or when appropriate, to help them become more aware of life from your child’s perspective.

You may wish to explore the different bodies available to enable children to have a say in their own development. Further information can be found here.

The Rainbow Course is run by Hazel Smee and Angie Purdy, independent specialist teachers for children and young people with autism. It is an eight week programme developed for parents and carers who have children or young people recently diagnosed with autism, are on the diagnosis journey, and for those who are looking to explore more about autism. They present the course together through live video sessions on Zoom, addressing topics such as sensory processing, socialising, and emotional regulation. There is also an opportunity to discuss questions that are not covered on the course in a bespoke session. For more information, email Autism Support and Training.

Support from School and Essex Organisations

Essex Local Offer provides the details of services and support for special educational needs and disabilities, including emotional wellbeing, entertainment and leisure, and preparing for adulthood.

There are a number of local and national organisations offering support to children and families with autism spectrum disorder and additional needs:

Autism Anglia is an independent charity that supports autistic children, adults, and their families in East Anglia.

SAFE (Supporting Asperger Families in Essex) is a support group for individuals and families affected by Asperger Syndrome (AS) and High Functioning Autism (HFA) in Essex, including the unitaries of Southend and Thurrock.

Little Heroes ASD Support Group is a parent led support group for families of children who are on the autistic spectrum in the Southend-on-Sea area.

St Christopher School in Leigh-on-Sea signposts to courses and support for children with Asperger’s and ASD, including SAFE, Healthwatch Southend, and The Unravel Room.

Livewell Southend’s Early Help Family Support Service offers children and families, regardless of age, the assistance they require as soon as needs present themselves, to prevent escalation and more intensive support later on. They can be reached on 01702 215 783.

Further resources


SNAP is a voluntary organisation based in Brentwood offering support to parents and carers of children with any special need or disability.

The Maze Group

The Maze Group is based in Ipswich. This support group offers courses to help parents understand their child’s diagnosis and their additional needs.

Young Minds

Young Minds is a UK charity committed to improving the emotional wellbeing and mental health of children and young people, offering information for parents and carers.


MindEd offers online advice and support to help understand and support children through a variety of issues and worries.

NHS Choices

NHS Choices is a resource offering information for young people on mental health problems including depression, anxiety and stress.

Sensory resources

SenseToys stock sensory toys for calming, sensory input and curriculum-friendly sensory education resources. Rompa is a leading sensory company, offering sensory room design and installation in addition to sensory toys and resources. NRS Healthcare is a supplier to the NHS, with a range of mobility equipment and disability aids. The Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) Foundation offers books, resources and courses designed to expand knowledge, foster awareness and promote recognition of Sensory Processing Disorder. Fledglings is a non-profit shop that helps children and adults with special needs by supplying products and equipment that help with everyday challenges. 

‘Understanding Your Child’s Sensory Signals’ by Angie Voss is a practical reference book written for parents, teachers and caregivers to guide an understanding of their child’s sensory differences and needs. It contains over two hundred of the most common sensory signals and cues with a sensory explanation and inexpensive ideas to help.

‘The Anger Box: Sensory Turmoil and Pain in Autism’ by Phoebe Caldwell explores the sensory issues experienced by those on the autistic spectrum and their neurobiological roots in an effort to find new ways of alleviating the distress that can characterise adults and children on the autistic spectrum.

‘Raising a Sensory Smart Child’ by Lindsey Biel and Nancy Peske is a handbook for dealing with sensory processing challenges, providing insights, practical tips, real-life strategies and resources for a range of ages.

If you are looking for specific or niche support that doesn't appear here, please get in touch to see if our team can advise.

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