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“Legacy of Hope: Action for ASD’s Final Gift Empowers Four Charities to Continue Autism Support Mission in Lancashire”

After over two decades of dedicated service to individuals and families affected by autism, Action for ASD, a cherished charity based in Burnley, has closed its doors. In June 2023, the trustees, facing operational and organisational challenges, made the difficult decision to cease operations. However, in a final act of community support, Action for ASD has left a lasting legacy by allocating its remaining reserves of £164,347.20 to four deserving charities in Lancashire.

Liz Paterson, Trustee of Action for ASD, expressed, “While it’s been a challenging decision to close, we’re immensely pleased to distribute our remaining funds to four brilliant organisations. Each has shown exceptional dedication to continuing and building upon the work and excellent reputation of Action for ASD.”

The beneficiaries of this generous donation are Spring North, Carers Link Lancashire, Blackburn with Darwen Carers Service, and Understanding Autism North West, each chosen for their commitment to supporting the autism community.

Rebecca Hodgson, CEO of Carers Link Lancashire, shared her gratitude, “This funding is a game-changer for us. We’re now able to establish vital support for carers of individuals with ASD, launching a two-year pilot project to employ a dedicated worker. Their role will encompass supporting children, young people, and adults who care for people with ASD across East Lancashire.”

Rob Livesey, Project Director for Understanding Autism North West, plans to channel the funds into enhancing their specialist autism counselling service, providing tailored support for those in need.

Blackburn with Darwen Carers Service, represented by CEO Sam Morris, will introduce a new ASD Carers Adviser role. “This role is designed to inform and support carers of individuals with ASD, providing peer support, respite opportunities, and essential guidance to reduce the impact of their caring responsibilities,” Sam Morris explained.

Angela Allen, CEO of Spring North, detailed their plans to develop an Adult ASD Service across Blackburn with Darwen and East Lancashire. “We’re focusing on creating peer groups, offering 1-1 support, and building a nurturing environment for adults with ASD. Our services will include developing life skills, emotional regulation, and employment support, ensuring a personalised approach.”

The legacy left by Action for ASD ensures that their mission and values will continue to resonate within the community, offering support and hope to those affected by autism in Lancashire.

About Action for ASD:

Established over 20 years ago, Action for ASD has been a beacon of support for children, young people, adults and families dealing with autism in Lancashire. Though its operations have ceased, its impact and spirit live on through the work of the benefitting charities.

For more information, please contact: Martin Hartley-Smith mhartleysmith@springnorth.org.uk or 07368 134604

SEND Directory

An effective and simple structure of *SEND support, accessible to all who need it.

*SEND: Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

Home (sendunlocked.org)

Looking After Someone Guide by Carers UK

Information and support for carers in England

cuk-looking-after-someone-2022-23-england.pdf (carersuk.org)

About this guide
Every day 6,000 people in the UK become carers, looking after family or friends who are older, disabled or seriously ill. See guide for more information

Dementia Cafe

The café provides a welcoming space for carers and their loved ones living with dementia to enjoy a brew and meet other people. We provide some gentle activities and there is an opportunity to speak to an advisor if any information or support is needed. 

The group takes place on the first Tuesday of the month from 1-3pm at Kingsway. We’re also looking for a volunteer to help support the Dementia Café (approx. 6 hours per month.)

My Mental Health – Young Carer Voice

As part of the My Mental Health project, Carers Trust brought together young carers and young adult carers who were involved in the project to discuss their achievements and what being involved meant to them. Using this testimony, we worked together to create an animation showing the importance of giving young carers and young adult carers a voice to campaign on issues that matter to them.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z7t9Idp3Y-I

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Blackburn with Darwen Carers Service