The emotional, physical and environmental impact of the bushfires effects everyone differently. For those children with autism in fire affected areas, processing such a big and life changing event can be extra challenging. Senator Hughes’ son has autism so she understands how difficult it can be to process a devastating life changing experience. In order to offer a little bit of relief for these children please let us know if you are a bushfire affected family with an autistic child, or know of a family affected by bush fires that has a child with autism by completing the form below and we will endeavour to get the items listed to you ASAP:

If your child has a special toy or item that they are particularly attached to i.e. Thomas The Tank Engine, please select other tick box, advise what that special item is below, and Senator Hughes and her team will endeavour to source the item.

Social Stories

Do you need an individual “bushfire social story” for a person you know with autism or communication disability?

“Social stories” are visual supports that can help people with communication disability to understand what is happening during the bushfires, impact, and recovery.

Visual supports might help the person in evacuation, relocation, emergency warnings, smoke behaviours, long periods of waiting, not having access to their preferred items, or fearing for family who are fighting fires. Showing basic pictured information in a sequence with plain language can help to reassure the person and keep them calm.

There are a number of ways we can assist you in accessing social stories and visual aids.

Option 1: Please reply to the pinned tweet of speech pathologist Professor Bronwyn Hemsley  (CLICK HERE)  or email Bronwyn [email protected] to make a request privately. From there, the free resources will be developed using Google Docs and Spreadsheets, and uploaded so that any person can access and modify them to their individual needs. If you want to help to make the visual supports, or provide photos for the ‘bushfire social stories’, please reply to Bronwyn’s pinned tweet or send an email.

Option 2: Contact your current Speech Therapist to assist in developing a social story about your situation

Option 3: If you would like to speak to someone directly, please contact my office on 02 9159 9325 or [email protected]