Mum on the autism spectrum helps others

Mother and two sons walking at sunset

The full spectrum of advocacy in Orbost

Julie Storey talks about her journey raising two sons on the autism spectrum

Julie Storey isn’t the average mother. Not only is she raising two young boys with Asperger’s Disorder, David, 12 and Damon, 6 but she has recently been diagnosed with the same disorder. Julie is also a full-time time Psychology student.

The journey began with Julie’s oldest son David, who had issues from a very young age and struggled with challenging behaviour, anti-social tendencies and hearing problems.

“While I was able to meet his sensory and ritual needs at home, it was a shock to know that at times he would have to be restrained in day care for the safety of other children and himself. David was later diagnosed with Asperger’s Disorder at 7 years old,” said Julie.

David, a bright and articulate child, understood that he was different. Unfortunately other students did not understand him, which led to bullying. Despite the support of many teachers, this ultimately led Julie to home schooling, which she viewed as the best option at that stage.

When Julie discovered Positive Partnerships she felt empowered to be a strong advocate for David and Damon, and the autism community in general. She was inspired to share with other parents the type of services, information and workshops provided by Positive Partnerships.

Julie is currently in the process of creating a resource centre, which will allow parents, educators and health professionals to borrow sensory aids for children, evidence based readings, as well as act as a local hub where parents can find support.

“I want to create a resource room where parents can borrow aids and find information on different strategies to help their child learn and develop. So many times I have purchased items that just don’t work for my boys and I know this is the case for many other parents, due to each child’s unique needs. This would be a great opportunity to donate any unused aids to the resource room so parents, carers and teachers can try different learning aids before buying.”

Julie is a passionate advocate for her boys, herself, and others in the autism community. Her mission is to be a support for parents, share studies and new findings on autism and ultimately help families maintain a loving bond while learning how to cope with autism.

Julies’s recommendations for support groups and networks in Victoria’s Gippsland area include:

[link to] Watch our video about community development in Orbost