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New all-age strategy to support autistic people in Norfolk

01 June 2020

The Norfolk All-age Autism Partnership Board has formally launched ‘My Autism, Our Lives, Our Norfolk’, a five-year strategy that sets out the county’s ambition to transform the support autistic people, their families and carers can access.

The Norfolk Autism Partnership Board, known as the NAPB, is a collaboration between autistic people, their parents/carers, voluntary and statutory organisations, working together to co-produce and implement a local autism strategy.

The strategy details nine priorities to be delivered over the next five years. It responds to what people have told us locally alongside guidance established nationally.

“I really welcome this, because having the voice of autistic people at the heart of the five-year strategy is vital”, says Cllr Bill Borrett, Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care and Chair of Norfolk’s Health and Wellbeing Board. “It is an important piece of work that I am very pleased to have been involved with.  I think this should give us a real vision to extend equal opportunities to people with autism across the county.”

The strategy also lays out the responsibilities of delivering the ’Think Autism’ statutory guidance, as well as the priorities in the NHS Long Term Plan. ‘My Autism, Our Lives, Our Norfolk,’ has been created with the input of autistic people at every stage, alongside family carers, voluntary sector organisations and community groups.

Trevor Key, NAPB Co-chair said: “As the Co-chair of the Norfolk All-age Autism Partnership Board, I am delighted to welcome you to the official launch of My Autism, Our Lives, Our Norfolk. The launch also heralds the publication of a questionnaire, we want to hear from autistic people about how your life, and the care and support you receive, has changed during the coronavirus.  As the parent of an autistic adult, I invite you to get involved. If you have an interest in autism there has never been a better time to make a real difference; to enable autistic people to enjoy the opportunities that fellow citizens of our beautiful county take for granted.”

The NAPB would like to find out more about how children and adults with autism have coped with the coronavirus lockdown and what support and advice they need as the lockdown is eased. Most importantly, the Board are keen to hear about the impact on mental health, anxiety and behaviour, and what services have been helpful over this period. They are also keen to find out what might help support people over the coming months. The information from this survey will help to make sure that autistic adults, children and their families in Norfolk get the help and support they need.

To take part in the autism survey, please place into your web browser the following link:

https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/NAPBcovid19survey/ or click on the web friendly link: www.norfolk.gov.uk/autismcovid19survey

You can also visit Norfolk County Council’s website and search for Norfolk Autism Partnership Board. The closing date for the survey is: 29 June 2020

The NAPB, has the responsibility of overseeing the implementation of the strategy over the next five years, including reviewing plans each year to ensure they continue to reflect local and national priorities.

You can access ‘My Autism, Our Lives, Our Norfolk’, as well as an Easy Read version, on Norfolk County Council’s website.

Autistic people of all ages and their families can give their views and be part of the wider conversation by joining the partnership. To hear more about the partnership and sign up and find out about these opportunities and how to get involved, go the Norfolk Autism Partnership Board webpage and complete the consent form, available at this link or email: autism@norfolk.gov.uk.

As part of the launch, a newsletter for anyone with an interest in autism is available on the NAPB website.

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