Professor Jacqui Roberts from the Autism Centre of Excellence recently returned from running a 4-day workshop for professionals working with people with autism in Porto Alegre and surrounding areas in the south of Brazil.
While resources for the autism community are scarce and hard to access in Brazil, the issues for those with autism and those working with them are strikingly similar to Australia. There was a great deal of lively discussion in between the lectures as students worked together to share their experiences and knowledge and apply what they learned.
The majority of the student group attending the course were teachers with a sprinkling of allied health professionals, and some parents of children with autism.
“It was a privilege to work with such an attentive and highly motivated group.” says Professor Roberts from the Autism Centre of Excellence
There was simultaneous translation for everyone throughout the 4 days which was very effective once everyone got used to working that way and ensured that as many people as possible could access the content.
The course was organized by the Pandorga Autism Capacity Building Program based in Sao Leopoldo. Pandorga was founded by Nelson and Heldi Kirst and provides education and support services for children and adults with autism and their families in addition to professional training programs.