Support Groups

Parent and Carers 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.

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.

Scroll down the page for details of your local groups.

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: September 15, October 20, November 17, December 1.

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: September 18, October 9, November 20.

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: 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: 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: 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: 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 meeting on Wednesday, September 20, is about Memory Books. It 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: To be advised.

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 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: 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