Support Groups

Autism Berkshire runs local Support Groups for parents and carers of children and young people with autism in Reading, Bracknell, Maidenhead, Slough and Windsor.

Scroll down the page for details of your local groups.

Parent and Carers Support Groups

Meetings are free of charge, friendly and informal, with tea, coffee and biscuits provided, and give those attending the chance to talk, share experiences and learn new strategies in a supportive and non-judgmental environment.

Visiting speakers will talk about topics relevant to parents and carers of children and young people on the autism spectrum and answer questions. Subjects covered include managing behaviour, visual support strategies, anxiety, social stories and benefits advice.

The West Berkshire Sunshine and Showers Groups, which meet on a bi-monthly basis, are run by West Berkshire Council.

Reading Support Group

The group’s meetings are held on a monthly basis during school terms on a Friday between 9.30am and 11.30am at Autism Berkshire’s office at Unit 7, Richfield Place, Richfield Avenue, Reading, RG1 8EQ. Tracy White is the coordinator of this group.

Forthcoming meetings are:

2017: June 23, July 21, September 15, October 20, November 17, December 1.

At the June meeting, Autism Berkshire’s chief executive, Jane Stanford-Beale, will talk about access to further and higher education for people with autism and what support students are entitled to while at college and university, and answer questions.

2018: January 5, February 9, March 9.

For more information about the group, call 01189 594 594 or email contact@autismberkshire.org.uk

Bracknell Support Group

The group’s meetings are held on a monthly basis during school terms on a Monday between 9.30am and 11.30am at Forest Park Community Centre, Horndean Road, Forest Park, Bracknell, RG12 0XQ. Gemma Coventry is the coordinator of this group.

Forthcoming meetings are:

2017: July 17, September 18, October 9, November 20.

The guest speaker at the meeting on July 17 will be Andi King, Bracknell Forest Council’s family information officer, who will be talking about the council’s Local Offer web pages, which provide information about local services and support for families of children and young people aged up to 25 who have special educational needs or disabilities.

2018: January 8, February 26, March 19.

For more information about the group, call 01189 594 594 or email contact@autismberkshire.org.uk

Maidenhead Support Group

The group’s meetings are held on a monthly basis during school terms on the last Tuesday of each month, between 10am and noon at Larchfield Children’s Centre, Bargeman Road, Maidenhead, SL6 2SG. Gemma Coventry is the coordinator of this group.

Forthcoming meetings are:

2017: June 27, September 26, October 31, November 28.

2018: January 30, February 27, March 27.

For more information about the group, call 01189 594 594 or email contact@autismberkshire.org.uk

Slough Support Groups

We offer both daytime and evening support group meetings in Slough. Clare Johnson-Alem is the coordinator of both groups.

The daytime group’s meetings are held on a monthly basis during school terms on Fridays, between 10am and noon, at the YES Shop in the Queensmere Shopping Centre, in High Street, Slough, SL1 2TW.

Forthcoming meetings are:

2017: July 14, September 8, October 13, November 10, December 8.

2018: January 12, February 9, March 9.

The evening group’s meetings are held on a monthly basis during school terms on the last Monday of each month, between 7pm and 9pm, at the Community Room in Tesco Extra, Wellington Street, Slough, SL1 1XW.

Forthcoming meetings are:

2017: June 26, July 31, September 25, October 30, November 27.

2018: January 29, February 26, March 26.

For more information about the group, call 01189 594 594 or email contact@autismberkshire.org.uk

Windsor Support Group

The group’s meetings are held on a monthly basis during school terms on the first Tuesday of each month, between 10am and noon at Windsor Youth and Community Centre, Alma Road, Windsor, SL4 3HD. Gemma Coventry is the coordinator of this group.

Forthcoming meetings are:

2017: July 4, September 5, October 3, November 7, December 5.

2018: February 6, March 6.

For more information about the group, call 01189 594 594 or email contact@autismberkshire.org.uk

Grandparents’ Support Group

The group is open to all grandparents living in Berkshire who are the primary carers for grandchildren with autism spectrum conditions, New members are always welcome.

Meetings take place on a monthly basis and lunch is provided.

 

The meetings on Wednesday, July 12, and Wednesday, September 20, will both be about Memory Books. They will take place from 10am to noon at the Autism Berkshire office, in Richfield Place, off Richfield Avenue, Reading, and will be followed by lunch.

For more information about the group or to register for meetings, please call Sarah at the Autism Berkshire office on 01189 594 594 or email ssnow@autismberkshire.org.uk.

Craft Group – Reading

This group gives parents and carers an opportunity to socialise, get creative, learn new skills and help Autism Berkshire to raise funds.

Cushions, decorations, lavender bags, candles and other items created by the club’s members are sold at events we attend across Berkshire.

The group meets on Tuesdays during school terms, from 12.45pm to 2.45pm, at the Autism Berkshire office at 7 Richfield Place, Richfield Avenue, Reading, RG1 8EQ.

Forthcoming sessions:

2017: June 20, June 27, July 4, July 11, July 18.

For more information about the club, call 01189 594 594 or email contact@autismberkshire.org.uk

West Berkshire Sunshine and Showers Groups

These are run by West Berkshire Council for parents and carers of children on the autism spectrum.

Meetings in Calcot take place at the East Family Wellbeing Hub (formerly Calcot Children’s Centre), in Curtis Road, on Wednesday mornings between 9.30am and 11.30am.

Forthcoming sessions are:

2017: June 28.

Meetings in Thatcham take place at the West Berkshire Central Family Wellbeing Hub (formerly North Thatcham Children’s Centre) in Park Lane, on Thursday mornings between 9.30am and 11.30am.

Forthcoming sessions are:

2017: July 6, September 28, November 23

2018: January 25, March 15, May 17, July 5.

Meetings cost £1 per family, including refreshments. Children are welcome.

Melissa Hutchings, the council’s Autism Advisor for Families, will be available to answer autism-related questions.

Guest speakers attend some meetings to talk about topics relevant to parents and carers of children on the autism spectrum.

Amanda Walker, Autism Berkshire’s Home Visit Worker for the area, will attend on a regular basis.

For more information about the groups, email melissa.hutchings@westberks.gov.uk or call Melissa Hutchings on 01635 503651.

west berkshire