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Diagnosis

Some parents find out their child's diagnosis before or at birth, for others it can take several years and a lot of heart ache. Getting through this time can be challenging as you manage conflicting information and expectations while also parenting. Awhi is here to support you.

Awhi Articles

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Awhi Article

What is stimming?

What is stimming? Find out what stimming is - and how to explain it to others who don't know.

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Awhi Article

What is hyperfocus? What is hyperfixation?

Hyperfocus or hyperfixation are important terms to know if you're neurodivergent. Here's everything you need to know.

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Awhi Article

What is FASD?

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) impacts millions of children and their families. Here's your questions about FASD answered.

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Awhi Article

What is a meltdown?

Ever wondered what the difference between a temper tantrum and a meltdown is? This guide will tell you and help you understand how to manage meltdowns.

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Awhi Article

What is a “special interest” for autistics

"Special interest" is a very specific term in the neurodivergent community. Find out more about it here.

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Awhi Article

Pathological Demand Avoidance syndrome (PDA)...

Pathological Demand Avoidance syndrome can make toileting really challenging. This guide will help.

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Awhi Article

Inclusive Education - What is it?

We're sure you've heard of inclusive education. But do you know what it is?

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Awhi Article

How to support your neurodivergent child at...

Christmas can be a real challenge for neurodivergent kids and their families - here are some tips on how to make the holiday season a little better for everyone.

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Awhi Article

How to help children with Down Syndrome use the...

If your child has Down Syndrome they may have trouble with toileting. These challenges might be unique to your child and other children like them. Here are some tips to help support them.

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Awhi Article

How to ask your carer if they’re vaccinated

If you're unsure of how to talk about vaccination with your carers. This guide will help. Here are scripts for asking your carer if they're vaccinated against Covid 19.

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Awhi Article

How do I help my FASD child at school?

Foetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) can make mainstream schooling can be challenging. Here are some tips for helping you get through.

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Awhi Article

How do I help my disabled child with their anger?

Learning to control your anger is a crucial skill. Here's a guide to helping your child manage their anger and find emotionally positive outlets for it.

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Awhi Article

How can I help my neurodivergent child with...

This article outlines common causes of anxiety in neurodivergent and disabled children and what you can do to support your child if they have anxiety.

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Awhi Article

How autism can impact sleep

Autism and neurodivergency can have a big impact on sleep. Here are some of the ways that sleep can become an issue.

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Awhi Article

Help! How can I teach my teenager that good...

Teaching your child good hygiene is very important for their health and self esteem. Here are some tips and advice for teaching good personal hygiene.

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Awhi Article

Five tips to help you advocate for your...

Advocating for your neurodivergent child at school is so important. Here in the Awhi community we are lucky enough to have parents who share their wisdom on how best to support and advocate for children.

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Awhi Article

Early Intervention - What is available to help...

Early Intervention Services (EIS) operates under Learning Support at the Ministry of Education - here's everything you need to know about the service.

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Awhi Article

Early Intervention - What health services are...

Early Intervention Services (EIS) operates under Learning Support at the Ministry of Education - this guide outlines what services are available under the early intervention umbrella.

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Awhi Article

Early Intervention - How can I help my...

If your child needs early intervention therapies, the best place to start is at home. Here are some tips to help you support your child at home with early interventions.

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Awhi Article

Autistic children are more likely to be bullied...

Autistic children can face bullying at higher rates than neurotypical children. Here's how parents can help.

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Awhi Article

Autism and toileting - how to help your child

Toileting can be especially hard for autistic and neurodivergent children. This guide outlines the unique challenges your child might face and how to help them.

Books

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Book

Working with families of young children with...

"This user-friendly book presents research-based best practices for serving families of children with special needs from birth to age six. Expert contributors demonstrate how early intervention and...

Image for Understanding fetal alcohol spectrum disorder :

Book

Understanding fetal alcohol spectrum disorder :

"This is the essential guide to FASD - the most common non-genetic learning disability, which is caused by alcohol consumption during pregnancy. It explains how FASD affects individuals at...

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Book

Trying differently rather than harder :

"This book provides a readable, narrative discussion of the neurobehavioral approach for working effectively with children, adolescents and adults with FASD. After a brief review of the diagnosis,...

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Book

The Way I am is Different :

"In this children's book, a boy with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder is about to embark on his third grade year. The boy describes his anxiety, fears, and discusses his struggles from an honest...

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Book

The Twins' Sensory Smarts /

"Strawberry & Cracker are twins with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) who live with their grandmother. In The Twins’ Sensory Smarts, Strawberry and Cracker emphasize their sensory challenges and ways...

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Book

The twins learn of their disorder /

"The Twins Learn of Their Disorder is one in the Strawberry & Cracker, Twins with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome series. In the story, the twins’ recent medical evaluation resulted in a diagnosis of Fetal...

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Book

The kids' guide to staying awesome and in...

"Packed with simple ideas to regulate their emotions and senses, this book will help children aged 7-14 years tackle feelings head-on and feel awesome and in control!... There are also useful tips...

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Book

The early intervention guidebook for families...

"Shows what early intervention looks like when it is based on current research and best practices. It focuses on how families and professionals can collaborate effectively so that young children...

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Book

The Down syndrome nutrition handbook :

Using her knowledge and expertise as a registered dietitian and experiences as the mother of a son with Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorder, and celiac disease, Medlen blends intricate science...

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Book

The best I can be: living with fetal alcohol...

Tells the story of a teenage girl who has fetal alcohol syndrome. Describes the daily experiences of living with the syndrome from her point of view and from her mother's perspective....

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Book

The Asperger teen's toolkit /

Dealing with the everyday realities facing teens with Asperger Syndrome, this book presents a toolkit of tried-and-trusted ideas to help them work through difficulties and find the solutions that...

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Book

The Asperger children's toolkit

"Growing up with Asperger Syndrome (AS) can throw up all sorts of challenges, but never fear, The Brain Guru, The Sensory Detective and The Social Scientist are here to help! These likeable...

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Book

Teaching individuals with developmental delays :

Offers detailed descriptions of current programs and addresses the critical issues related to developmental disabilities for professionals of Special Education, Law, and Psychology. Covers: Basic...

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Book

Supernourishment for children with autism...

"Full of simple yet innovative recipes, this book provides a comprehensive guide to keeping your child on the autism spectrum healthy through a nutritionally dense diet while addressing their needs...

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Book

Socially ADDept :

"Decodes the often confusing rules of social behavior for all children Socially ADDept helps educators and parents teach the hidden rules of social behavior to children with limited social skills,...

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Book

Small steps forward :

"When young children are diagnosed with conditions such as Down's Syndrome, autism, or other forms of developmental delay, there is much that parents can do to help. This new edition of the award...

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Book

Quinn at school :

"Early diagnosis and early intervention are both important factors in the lifelong success of those diagnosed. Quinn at School is based on vignettes that reflect the social challenges (interacting...

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Book

Prevent-teach-reinforce for young children :

"Now early childhood professionals have their own guide to the popular Prevent-Teach-Reinforce (PTR) model—the research-proven, family-centered approach used in schools nationwide to resolve...

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Book

Potty time for kids with Down syndrome :

"The guide discusses physical, medical, and behavioral issues that can complicate toilet training children with Down syndrome and offers step-by-step instructions for teaching and motivating...

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Book

Our FAScinating journey :

"Our FAScinating Journey, is an extremely valuable source of insight and intervention strategy for anyone working with a child or adult with problems related to fetal alcohol exposure. This book is...

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Book

Our brains are like computers! :

"In what ways do people think about other people? Just like computers save and share files, people save and share their memories of one another. This highly visual picture book uses computer...

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Book

Oli and the pink bicycle :

"It's Oli's seventh birthday - the first one since her new mamma and papa adopted her - and she's really excited about the present she has been promised. A pink bicycle! But Oli's special day...

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Book

Making sense of the madness :

Jeff thought he knew all about FASD until he started parenting a teenager with it! Jeff and his partner, Tara had been front line staff for many years and both felt they had the tools and...

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Book

Inclusion in the early childhood classroom :

"In this engaging book, the authors share stories from their practice and research about several young children with a variety of developmental delays and disabilities and their teachers. They...

Image for Helping children to improve their gross motor...

Book

Helping children to improve their gross motor...

"This guided curriculum offers a way to help children and young people aged 5-18 years. Activity worksheets provide instructions on how gross motor tasks can be accomplished through incremental...

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Book

Having a disability /

"An inclusive and accessible picture book for children that explores what it is like to have a disability. The Questions and Feelings About... series encourages children to explore their emotions...

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Book

Group play interventions for children :

"Group play interventions are used to meet a broad range of developmental needs in children from various backgrounds. This book is for mental health practitioners working with children aged 5...

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Book

Foetal alcohol spectrum disorders :

"This unique book has been written for those parenting children / young people with FASD (Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders) by Dr Mary Mather, widely regarded as one of the UK's foremost medical...

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Book

Fidget! /

"Strawberry and Cracker are twins with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome who live with their grandma and her dog, Thunder. The twins struggle with fidgeting. All children fidget, but a child with FAS...

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Book

Fetal alcohol syndrome :

"Based on academic research, tells the stories of eight New Zealand women who gave birth to children suffering from fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. Describes the struggles of these women to raise...

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Book

Fetal alcohol syndrome :

In 1973, psychologist Ann Streissguth was shocked by the lack of scientific documentation on the impact of alcohol on the unborn child. She sought to fill that void by dedicating her professional...

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Book

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders :

"Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASDs) have emerged as a major phenomenon within the education, health, criminal justice and social care systems of many countries, with current prevalence...

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Book

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder

"An estimated 40,000 children are born with a Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder in the United States each year. The impacts on school and family, and social life are immense. FASDs are a group of...

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Book

Family-based practices

"Addresses the topic of family-based practices describing specific strategies that will assist practitioners to collaborate with families in achieving the various components of the recommended...

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Book

Explained by brain :

"Dr Vanessa Spiller is a clinical psychologist and the parent of a young adult with FASD. She blends 20 years of clinical work with lived experiences to deliver practical frameworks and strategies...

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Book

Educating children and young people with fetal...

"The range of learning difficulties associated with children who have Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) has been highlighted as an emerging but little understood area of Special Educational...

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Book

Early learning goals for children with special...

Provides suggestions for those working with children with disabilities to utilise play as a means of helping children to learn. Shows how to use each work area of the early years setting as a...

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Book

Early intervention practices around the world

Describes effective early intervention practices at work in 13 countries. Describes innovations in four areas: service delivery models, family support, professional development, and organisational...

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Book

Early Intervention Every Day! :

"Effective early intervention doesn't stop when the provider leaves the family's home. That's why every interventionist needs this practical sourcebook, packed with research-based strategies for...

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Book

Early childhood intervention without tears :

"This essay describes an enhanced Team Around the Child (TAC) approach that supports families in finding a workable balance between interventions for the infant and quality of life for the whole...

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Book

Developing inclusive practice for young...

"Written by one of the UK’s top experts in the field, this practical and informative resource explores the complex and compounding socio-cultural, historical and political factors surrounding...

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Book

DEC recommended practices :

"Guides the development and implementation of an effective early intervention/early childhood special education program for fully integrating research evidence with the everyday truths faced by...

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Book

Cerebral palsy in infancy: targeted activity to...

"Cerebral Palsy in Infancy is a thought-provoking book which introduces a new way of thinking on the development and use of interventions. Relevant to current practice, it advocates early, targeted...

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Book

CARA's kit for toddlers :

"CARA's Kit stands for Creating Adaptations for Routines and Activities. In this approach, you adapt the environment, activities and routines so that all toddlers may participate as independently...

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Book

Autistic logistics :

"This updated edition is based on Kate Wilde's decades of experience and the latest autism research. Tackling day-to-day issues and more, the book offers tried-and-tested techniques to help you...

Ebooks

Image for Understanding fetal alcohol spectrum disorder :

Ebook

Understanding fetal alcohol spectrum disorder :

"This is the essential guide to FASD - the most common non-genetic learning disability, which is caused by alcohol consumption during pregnancy. It explains how FASD affects individuals at...

Image for The kids' guide to staying awesome and in...

Ebook

The kids' guide to staying awesome and in...

"Packed with simple ideas to regulate their emotions and senses, this book will help children aged 7-14 years tackle feelings head-on and feel awesome and in control!... There are also useful tips...

Image for The Asperger Teen's Toolkit

Ebook

The Asperger Teen's Toolkit

With minimal text and fun, comic book style graphics, this is a treasure trove of information for young people with Asperger Syndrome and their carers. Exploring the science of how the human mind...

Image for The Asperger children's toolkit

Ebook

The Asperger children's toolkit

"Growing up with Asperger Syndrome (AS) can throw up all sorts of challenges, but never fear, The Brain Guru, The Sensory Detective and The Social Scientist are here to help! These likeable...

Image for Supernourishment for children with autism...

Ebook

Supernourishment for children with autism...

"Full of simple yet innovative recipes, this book provides a comprehensive guide to keeping your child on the autism spectrum healthy through a nutritionally dense diet while addressing their needs...

Image for Socially ADDept :

Ebook

Socially ADDept :

"Decodes the often confusing rules of social behavior for all children Socially ADDept helps educators and parents teach the hidden rules of social behavior to children with limited social skills,...

Image for Small steps forward

Ebook

Small steps forward

"When young children are diagnosed with conditions such as Down's Syndrome, autism, or other forms of developmental delay, there is much that parents can do to help. This new edition of the award...

Image for Our brains are like computers! :

Ebook

Our brains are like computers! :

"In what ways do people think about other people? Just like computers save and share files, people save and share their memories of one another. This highly visual picture book uses computer...

Image for Helping children to improve their gross motor...

Ebook

Helping children to improve their gross motor...

"This guided curriculum offers a way to help children and young people aged 5-18 years. Activity worksheets provide instructions on how gross motor tasks can be accomplished through incremental...

Image for Autistic logistics :

Ebook

Autistic logistics :

"This updated edition is based on Kate Wilde's decades of experience and the latest autism research. Tackling day-to-day issues and more, the book offers tried-and-tested techniques to help you...

Online Resources

Image for Autism NZ

Online Resource

Autism NZ

"Autism New Zealand is here to provide services and support, education and information on autism for autistic people and family/whānau, caregivers, and professionals who engage with them." - website

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Online Resource

NZ Down Syndrome Association

"The New Zealand Down Syndrome Association (NZSDA) has set itself the mission to Support, inform and advocate alongside people with Down syndrome, families, whānau and professionals. The NZDSA...

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Online Resource

Whaikaha – Ministry of Disabled People

Brief description of Child Development Services and how to access them.

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Online Resource

Plunket Whanau Awhina

"Plunket is a charity and Aotearoa New Zealand’s largest support service for the health and wellbeing of tamariki under-five and their whānau. We offer free health and development checks, a 24/7...

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Online Resource

My Brain, Me and FASD Interactive Comic

The all new, interactive My Brain, Me and FASD is here! Have some fun and learn about FASD Click to see a special interactive comic version of "My Brain, Me and FASD". It explains what FASD is, how...

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Online Resource

Me and my FASD

This website is for young people with FASD. It has information about FASD and things that can help. It was created in the UK working with a very experienced team including medical professionals,...

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Online Resource

Forsaken:

Reports on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) in New Zealand and backgrounds the documentary "Disordered: FASD in New Zealand".

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Online Resource

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder - Care Action...

Providing support services to families and individuals affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

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Online Resource

FASD Hub Australia

Australia's FASD hub for health professionals, teachers, justice professionals, researchers, parents and carers.

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Online Resource

Early Intervention Services

NZ Ministry of Education website explaining the Early Intervention Service (EIS), what support is available and how parents can access the service.

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Online Resource

Foundations

UK website Foundations, a result of the merger between What Works for Children’s Social Care (WWCSC) and the Early Intervention Foundation (EIF) in December 2022, is dedicated to ensuring that all...

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Online Resource

Coping with Christmas when your child has...

Nicola Bond, mum to a special needs child, has some tips for helping kids with autism spectrum disorder get through what can be a really stressful time of year.

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Online Resource

Community Child Health, Te Whatu Ora/Waitemata

Overview of Community Child Health and the services provided, including contact information.

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Online Resource

Children’s Health, Starship, Te Whatu Ora /Te...

Information on children's health services at Te Whatu Ora Te Toka Tumai Auckland.

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Online Resource

Child Health, Te Whatu Ora Health New...

Brief overview of the service and submission forms for a referral.

Image for Child Development Service, Wellington Regional...

Online Resource

Child Development Service, Wellington Regional...

Overview of the service, the professional staff on the team and contact information.

Image for Child Development Service, Te Whatu Ora/Health...

Online Resource

Child Development Service, Te Whatu Ora/Health...

Brief explanation of the Child Development Service, the type of specialists and their roles and contact information for the Service.

Image for Child Development Service, Te Whatu Ora Health...

Online Resource

Child Development Service, Te Whatu Ora Health...

Child Development Service website, includes a description of the services available, an explanation of how family and whānau can work with the service, links to helpful online resources for family...

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Online Resource

Child Development Service, Te Whatu Ora Health...

Contact information for the Child Development Service, Southland, Southern Te Whatu Ora

Image for Child Development Centre, Te Whatu Ora/ Waikato

Online Resource

Child Development Centre, Te Whatu Ora/ Waikato

Summary of services and contact information for the Waikato Child Development Service

Image for An autistic person's guide to an...

Online Resource

An autistic person's guide to an...

Covers how to handle societal and family expectations at Christmastime and looks at how to cater for sensory issues.

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Online Resource

A Neuroinclusive Christmas

Looks at ways to make the holiday season more inclusive for neurodivergent people.

Research Articles

Image for The Strengths and Positive Influences of...

Research Article

The Strengths and Positive Influences of...

People with disabilities have not been adequately represented in strengths-based research. This study is the first to examine strengths and positive influences of young children with fetal alcohol...

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Research Article

Self-care in caregivers of children with FASD:...

Background Caregivers of children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) have elevated levels of stress, which can negatively impact family functioning and caregivers' mental and physical...

Image for Raising a child with foetal alcohol syndrome :

Research Article

Raising a child with foetal alcohol syndrome :

Observes that learning of a child's disability can be a difficult time for parents. In this study, families shared their experiences of raising a child with foetal alcohol syndrome. These were then...

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Research Article

Feasibility study of a family-focused...

Growing evidence shows that children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) can benefit from interventions, and specifically interventions focused on improving self-regulation. The...

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Research Article

Caregiver and family quality of life for...

The current study provides increased understanding regarding caregiver and family quality of life, in families with children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. This information was gathered...

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Research Article

Adaptation in families raising children with...

Notes that there is limited research investigating the lived experiences of parents raising children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD). Uses qualitative analysis to identify how parents...

Image for Adaptation in families raising children with...

Research Article

Adaptation in families raising children with...

Identifies and explores unique stressors that hinder family adaptation for parents raising children with FASD. Highlights one critical challenge that inhibits successful family adaptation for...

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Research Article

A qualitative evaluation of caregivers'...

Points out that the effects of prenatal exposure to alcohol are wide-ranging and pervasive in nature. In response to growing concerns about the lifelong disabilities related to prenatal alcohol...

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Research Article

"It's ignorant stereotypes": Key stakeholder...

People with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) and women who drink alcohol while pregnant can experience stigma, possibly exacerbated by stereotyped media portrayals.Method To understand...

Videos

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Video

What is FASD?

To improve the educational success of learners with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum (FASD), we have to understand FASD. This eLearning module shares current research and explains the common language of FASD...

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Video

What is Early Intervention?

Early intervention means identifying and providing effective early support to children and young people who are at risk of poor outcomes. Effective early intervention works to prevent problems...

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Video

The Power of Early Intervention :

Early intervention - tackling problems before they become more serious and more entrenched - is the right response to improve the lives of children, young people and the families, and to strengthen...

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Video

My Perfect Family: The Cookie Project

In 2012, Hamilton couple Graeme and Chris adopted their foster daughter Ngā Hou - who was born with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and other disabilities. After Chris’s tragic death, Graeme struggled to...

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Video

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

Being an adolescent male can be hard. But add to that an invisible disability affecting how you learn, how you think and how you behave… it can soon become a nightmare. Daniel and Jakob are two...

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Video

Disordered: FASD in New Zealand, the...

The number of people in New Zealand with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) may be grossly underestimated. The call comes from health professionals, teachers and advocates for those with FASD,...

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Video

Dan Dubovsky - Common Strengths of Students...

Dan Dubovsky talks about the importance of looking for and utilizing the incredible strengths our students possess. Corey Andrews: "I am enjoying Dan telling me about myself. I don't think every...

Image for Crips in Cars: Willie & Darya

Video

Crips in Cars: Willie & Darya

Crips in Cars: The social experiment that celebrates differences. We chuck two strangers in a car and watch them connect through the simple act of conversation. Willie Waiirua is a social media...

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The Awhi Ngā Mātua team would like to thank Takai, the IHC Foundation and the Dines Family Charitable Trust for their generous contributions to our work. A huge thank you also to the IHC Programmes team, in particular the IHC Library which has worked so hard to make their remarkable collection available to us.

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