I believe that each child has the ability to make connections in the social world. Quality of life is of paramount importance, so the needs and desires of the child must be taken into consideration. Through targeting strengths and identifying areas which require nurturing, an individualised approach to social skills development is achievable.
Laura Crowley, BA ECS (hons) MA Ed (open) PG Cert TLHE, has over 20 years experience working hands on with children and adolescents on the Autism Spectrum. She is a mother, lecturer, consultant and also diagnosed as autistic herself.
Having spent her initial years working in residential care settings and an Autism specific ABA school, Laura later took up a role in a Cork based Autism Charity in 2004.
Laura set up an Educational Support Service in 2005 for the charity, providing individualised assistance to children with a diagnosis of Autism in mainstream school settings. Laura has since worked with over fifty schools in the Munster area.
In 2009, Laura designed and co-ordinated the PALS (personal and life skills) Programme for the Centre, the first of its kind in this country. The programme has achieved huge success, and is currently in its eleventh year of operation. The Programme specialises in teaching social skills from a ground-up approach, mindful of barriers which may impede advancement. This has more recently been developed into an app format. The app "Mission Rescue Kloog: Social Skills For Autism" is now available on the App Store and Google Play. The app provides parents, carers, teachers and SNA's with the opportunity to provide elements of the PALS programme in the home/school classroom. The app stresses context sensitivity and social consequences and is suitable for children from approximately 7 years old (dependant on comprehension levels). The second installment of this series is also available, Mission Rescue Kloog 2: Return to Zugopolis. This app concentrates on the concept of friendship, relationships and safety. The third installment was released in 2018 and concentrates on the school environment. The series has now been downloaded over 200,000 times globally and has also been the recipient of two awards to date.
Laura has also been lecturing on the Diploma in Autism Studies in University College Cork since it's inception eight years ago and was heavily involved in formulating and devising content for the course.
What my clients have to say
I have engaged with Laura Crowley of Connect Autism Consultancy over the years with my son Michael. I have found her to be a wonderful support. Very knowledgeable and is able to not only give great insight into the world of autism and how to help the child but also she really knows how to connect and build trust with the child which is very important. I completely recommend her services for any parent of a child with autism who needs additional and ongoing support. Connect Autism Consultancy is the place to go.
My son has been working with Laura on various aspects of his social skills, which has had a positive impact on how he approaches and manages daily social situations. This has allowed him to form friendships with schoolmates by helping him understand the nuances of social interactions among his peers. At all times the sessions have been tailored to his personal needs, allowing him to work at his pace while still encouraging him to progress and develop. The feedback I received at the end of each session has allowed us to continue the work at home and has given me a greater understanding of his abilities and how to develop his skills. I would recommend Connect Autism Consultancy to anyone looking to help a child with ASD to advance their abilities in whatever area they may need help.
Both of my children have been working with Laura through Connect Autism Consultancy. The help, advice and individual care that they receive is an invaluable tool which has helped both of them develop their social skills and negotiate social situations. She has given them tools to use and has helped them manage anxieties which were overwhelming them. My son has formed friendships and is enjoying his life in Secondary School. He is a happy confident young man who is dreaming big and confident in his ability to achieve his dreams, thanks to the tools he learnt with Laura. Laura has helped my daughter to manage her stress levels at times of difficulty. She has learned the skills needed to maintain friendships and is now a happy, confident young woman ready to face the world. Each session is tailor made. The feedback from Laura to parents ensures that there is continuity between sessions. I would recommend Connect Autism Consultancy to Parents, as Laura will provide both you and your child with the support, advice and tools to assist you through your journey with ASD.
We as a family are so glad to be working with Laura. We have found in the last four years that no problem is too big, that there is always a solution and Laura always finds that solution. Thanks for doing such a good job.