Phoebe Caldwell, expert practitioner in Intensive Interaction, works mainly with children and adults on the autistic spectrum, many of them with behavioural distress. She combines using a person’s body language to communicate with paying attention to those aspects of an individual’s environment which are triggering sensory distress. In 2010, she was awarded the Times-Sternberg Prize for work on autism and contribution to the community - and in July 2011, Bristol University awarded her an Honorary Doctorate of Science for on communication with people with autism. Her latest book, ‘The Anger Box’, is due out in late January, published by Pavilion Publishers. It is about sensory difficulties, confusion and pain in autism. Phoebe will be answering your questions about her perspectives on autism and her approach.
Anna Kennedy OBE is the mother of two boys, Patrick and Angelo, who both have autism. In 1997, Anna co-founded the registered charity Hillingdon Care and Support (HACS). Two years later, having been turned away by no fewer than 26 special needs schools when searching for appropriate educational facilities for her sons, she remortgaged her home and transformed a derelict council building in Middlesex, West London into Hillingdon Manor School. Anna is regularly invited to speak at conferences on the subject of autism and has also taken part in numerous TV talk shows and news programmes. In 2009 she won ‘Woman of the Year’ an award run in conjunction with The Observer newspaper and Smooth Radio and has recently been named Tesco Mum of the Year 2013 and now officially awarded an OBE.