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Parent-led Islington group fighting to provide dynamic opportunities for young people with autism

PUBLISHED: 13:04 20 December 2017 | UPDATED: 13:05 20 December 2017

Members of Islington's Dynamic Autism Group at their exhibition at Lauderdale House in Highgate, Photo by Dynamic Autism Group

Members of Islington's Dynamic Autism Group at their exhibition at Lauderdale House in Highgate, Photo by Dynamic Autism Group

Dynamic Autism Group

A parent-led Islington group giving young people with autism more opportunities outside classroom put on a public art exhibition to show off kids’ achievements.

Members of Islington's Dynamic Autism Group at their exhibition at Lauderdale House in Highgate, Photo by Dynamic Autism Group Members of Islington's Dynamic Autism Group at their exhibition at Lauderdale House in Highgate, Photo by Dynamic Autism Group

Dynamic Autism Group, which was started by parents in 2011, is on a mission to provide those with autism between the ages of 14 and 25 with creative and energetic pursuits. Its members meet regularly in Spears Road, Hornsey Rise.

In the run-up to Christmas the group has been proudly displaying works of art in Highgate’s Lauderdale House – a project concocted by the volunteers as a way of helping their members express themselves, as well as seeing the fruits of their creativity exhibited on a grand stage.

Variety is the key for the group, which has performed in Grenville Road’s Timbuktu adventure playground over the years, but it is dependent on parents and businesses providing funding.

“We have the determination and desire to help teenagers and young adults to develop creative, active, energetic skills that can be used for their own pleasure and development,” a group spokesman said.

Members of Islington's Dynamic Autism Group at their exhibition at Lauderdale House in Highgate, Photo by Dynamic Autism Group Members of Islington's Dynamic Autism Group at their exhibition at Lauderdale House in Highgate, Photo by Dynamic Autism Group

“From magazine designing, sports, playing the guitar and singing to computer skills, photography and animation, the results of their efforts can be easily seen and used as examples of their creative and developmental skills.

“Our aim is to reach more parents to help support our activities.”

In her role as chief inspector of regulatory body Ofsted, Amanda Spielman released a report last week warning that children with autism and special educational needs are being excluded and forced out of mainstream education.

Alison Worsley, director of external affairs at Highgate charity Ambitious about Autism, has said that in the worst cases she has experienced kids with autism been routinely sent home early, taught in corridors away from their peers and banned from going on school trips.

“Too many children with special educational needs are being denied the opportunity to thrive at school,” she said.

“Children with special educational needs deserve an equal and fair chance at school and educators and decision-makers must act swiftly to solve the issues preventing this.”

For more information visit thedynamicautismgroup.weebly.com.

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