Autism One Stop Shops
In line with Recommendation 11, Strategy funding was dedicated to the roll-out of 6 new One Stop Shops across Scotland. Two successful One Stop Shops had already been established in Glasgow and Edinburgh. Based on voluntary sector models and working in partnership with Local Authorities, the NHS and local groups representing parents and those on the autism spectrum, each One Stop Shop is tailored to local needs. New facilities are now up and running in Fife (Dunfermline), Highland (Inverness), Lanarkshire (Motherwell), Grampian (Aberdeen), Ayrshire (Kilmarnock) and Perth and delivery within the One Stop Shops is being led by Scottish Autism, National Autistic Society Scotland and Autism Initiatives.
One Stop Shops offer people with autism, their families and professionals information and advice about autism and help people gain access to local support services. As well as acting as an information hub, the One Stop Shops work closely with other groups and agencies, collaborating to understand and respond to the needs of the autism community. Each One Stop Shop will have local variances, however, they each aim to provide:
- support to access services
- guidance to overcome barriers such as an unaddressed diagnosis and delayed intervention of support
- access to a library of information and resources about autism
- a safe and friendly place to speak confidentially to someone who understands autism
- one-to-one sessions, workshops, training days and group activities for children, families and professionals
Autism Initiatives' One Stop Shop - known as 'No.6' - and the One Stop in Dunfermline recently hosted an event for the Scottish Government, supported by young people on the spectrum. The Dunfermline facility show-cased their work, including several written statements of positive feedback from parents and carers saying how much the One Stop Shop had improved the quality of life for their children. Our visitors from England, Wales and Northern Ireland were all extremely impressed with what they saw.
This contributes to goals 1,2,3 and 4 of the Foundation stage by empowering families through increased knowledge and support to access appropriate services and giving them a voice via appropriate advocacy support.
An evaluation of the One Stop Shops is currently underway and a report will be published around November 2014.
Further information about the One Stop Shops can be found on the Strategy website:
Email: Ali Taylor
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