Autism Month will see the official opening of a dedicated building in Alstonville that will deliver Aspect Far North Coast Centre services, including a new NSW Government-funded program as well as existing Aspect services.

The move to the new building, to be officially opened on Friday, May 1, was necessary after vast growth and a high demand for Aspect services and programs in the region.

Prominent members of the Far North Coast community and Aspect clients Jeanagh and Chris Condon, the parents of two boys with autism, were key players in getting services to the Far North Coast.

“The establishment of new services at the Aspect Far North Coast Centre is very important to the local community as the centre provides a great service to the Far North Coast,” Jeanagh said.

“The centre provides families with much-needed support, helping them to cope throughout the autism diagnosis process. No longer do parents have a feeling of hopelessness when they receive a diagnosis of autism.”

The Aspect Far North Coast Building Blocks® program will continue to be delivered throughout the region, with five centre-based programs being offered in 2009, as will Aspect Recipe for Success, a Statewide program that teaches parents to manage their child’s behavioural problems in the home.

The opening of the new building has also meant six new jobs for the region with nine Aspect staff members, both part-time and full-time, now staffing the Aspect Far North Coast Centre.

Jodi Rogers, Aspect Far North Coast Centre manager, says it was ideal for the centre to remain in the same community, with this attributing to a smooth transition to the new premises.

“Clients have commented on the welcoming environment of the new centre and staff are happy that we now have more space to allow for greater confidentiality and the growth of our library facility,” she said.

“We can now offer a more tailored, family-friendly environment.”

The building will be officially opened by Jeanagh Condon. Also attending will be Federal Minister for Page and community supporter, Janelle Saffin, Aspect CEO Adrian Ford and local Aspect partner and director of Jumbunna Early Intervention in Casino, Robyn Townsend.

The opening of the Aspect Far North Coast Centre will be held from 11am-12.30pm at the new address, 23 Commercial Road, Alstonville.