Annual General Meeting – 2009 End of Year Message
What a productive year 2009 has been for the Strive Support Group-Supporting Families Living with Autism. The group which formed in October 2007 now has over 60 members (parents, grandparents, carers and teachers) from the Cessnock, Singleton, Maitland and Newcastle areas. This in its self demonstrates how many people are dealing with this issue and how valuable such a service can be supporting them through their journey.
The Strive Support Group has not only provided emotional support to its members, it has allowed them access to healthcare professionals who have extensive knowledge and expertise in the field of Autism. Strive have been fortunate to have had leading experts such as Clinical Psychologists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Therapists, present at the monthly meetings. Also Government Departments, private support services, and public and private educational representatives have provided valuable information about services and funding available. Most insightful of all have been the presentations from parents of, and children with, Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Such a group cannot continue without the support of its community. Strive Co-ordinator Maxine Baird would like to thank Lee Faye of the Cessnock Ambulance Association for the money donated to our group from the Bowls Day and Cessnock Lions Club for their generous donation. Such donations have enabled us to establish The Strive Achievement Award- recognising the efforts of children with Autism who attend eleven of our local schools.
We also wish to thank the Cessnock Advertiser for raising the awareness of Autism and the events of Strive.
Our December meeting will be a celebratory function at the Australian Hotel Private Function room on 8th December. A very special guest, Michelle Finlay will speak on the night about the remarkable events she has coordinated in the Newcastle area to raise funds to support children on the Autism Spectrum. The night will commence at 6.30pm and canapés and light refreshments will be served. Any interested parties please contact Maxine Baird on 0419913033 before 4th December. Member please note that there will be no meeting held in January.
One in 160 children is diagnosed with Autism - it touches the lives of so many.