Autism Information Hub

After three successful years at Gateshead Central Library, the Autism Information Hub has outgrown its current space and is moving to the Elgin Children's Centre in Deckham, where we hope to expand further and offer an even better service to our visitors!

The Hub will operate from The Elgin Children's Centre from 17 June 2019 onwards, on the third Monday every month. Session times will remain the same 9.30 to 11.30am. Free car parking is available.      

We look forward to meeting visitors at our new venue in the summer.

Get directions and more details about what's on at The Elgin children's centre.

Our new venue will allow the Hub drop-ins and the parent/carer support group to share the space and all our resources and information will be accessible for all sessions.

The Hub parent/carer support group will also begin to meet at the Elgin Children's Centre from 6 September 2019, and then every first Friday of the month. Until then the support group will meet at Barnardo's SENDIASS offices, 20 Bewick Road, Gateshead. Session times will remain the same 9.30 to 11.30am.

The Autism Information Hub is free to access and offers resources about autism and a monthly face to face information and signposting service to people with autism, their families/carers and practitioners. You do not need a diagnosis to access the Hub. 

Every month, the Autism Information Hub at the Elgin Children's Centre offers face-to-face signposting and information sessions. This is an opportunity to speak with a professionally trained autism specialist and talk about your queries. There is a community cafe, a sensory space, play areas and toy library on site and we welcome parents and carers of children with autism to drop in and meet informally to relax and share experiences.    

The face to face information point provides: 

  • a friendly person to speak to who is experienced in the field of autism
  • guidance on how a diagnosis of autism works in Gateshead
  • information on autism training opportunities, events and group activities for children, young people, families, adults and professionals
  • guidance and signposting to appropriate support services and voluntary and charity organisations operating locally

Face to face sessions are held on the third Monday of every month from 9.30 to 11.30am (17 June 2019, 15 July 2019, 19 August 2019, 16 September 2019, 21 October 2019, 18 October 2019 and 16 December 2019).

A parent of a child with autism has written a helpful guide for parents wishing to claim Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for their autistic child. If you would like a copy of the guide, you can come along to the next Monday session, or email karen.thirlaway@blueyonder.co.uk 

For more information about the Autism Information Hub, contact the Elgin Children's Centre, Elgin Road, Gateshead, NE9 5PA, phone 0191 433 6300 or email gatesheadchildrenscentre@gateshead.gov.uk   

Gateshead Central Library, The Hub's previous home, also holds a wide variety of helpful books available to borrow covering a range of topics such as diagnosis, sensory differences, anxiety, sleep and social skills. TheIcon for pdf Autism book collection [841.08KB] leaflet highlights the books that are currently available. Librarians can show you how to use Picture Exchange Communication Software (PECS) which has been installed on one of the computers at the library so that you can compile and print out social story boards. These can be used to support communication for routines, behaviour and new vocabulary. There is a small cost for using the computers and printers at the library. A quiet space is also available. Directions to the Central Library, opening times, accessibility information and contact details can be found on the Gateshead Libraries website.

A small library of autism books and resources are also available at Pelaw Library. Directions to Pelaw Library, opening times, accessibility information and contact details can be found on the Pelaw Library webpage.

Autism Parent Support Group

Gateshead's Autism Information Hub now has a spin-off support group for parents and carers affected by autism.
The group will meet between 9.30 and 11.30am on the first Friday of each month at Barnardo's DIAS, 20 Bewick Road, Gateshead NE8 4DP.

All parents and carers are welcome to join the group for mutual support and information-sharing about their autism experiences.

For further details please contact karen.thirlaway@blueyonder.co.uk

Icon for pdf Gateshead Autism Service Directory [749.97KB]directory highlights local, regional and national support services and organisations, some of which are autism-specific.

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