This is Phillida Eves’s bright idea for Galway.

Fun in Nature for kids with autism to make hands-on nature connections together as a family.

HOW WE WILL SPEND THE MONEY

Children with autism and their families will come together in the beautiful and tranquil environment of Brigit’s Garden in Co. Galway.

By taking the children with autism’s needs into consideration we will provide a series of 6 autism friendly afternoons for families to engage with nature together as a family unit. It is an opportunity for families to meet other families and to have relaxed fun together and make connections with nature. I facilitate workshops with a Galway based autism charity and we have surveyed the parents and they would be thrilled with this project. We would have 25 or so participants, 5 or 6 families taking part in each session.

I am passionate about inclusion in our society. I run my own business called Creativity West, Galway, and facilitate workshops for children, young people and families using crafts and story-telling performances to build relationships, promote creativity and support inclusion.

I worked as a teacher for special needs children for over 15 years and have seen how difficult the simple things in life can be for families of children with special needs. So many times families become split up at weekends.

One parent staying at home with the child with special needs, while the other parent takes the siblings to the cinema, or another activity. Outings as a family can be fraught with parents and siblings feeling anxious about the potential for a melt down or people staring or making comments about behaviours that they don’t understand.

I am also passionate about the benefits of the outdoors and being in nature and exploring and experiencing the beauty of the natural world. I want to make it possible for families to get together and have fun as a family unit while experiencing the transformative effect of engaging together in nature. Jenny Beale, Director of Brigit’s Garden shares my vision.