In what ways can children who have a sibling with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) be supported, in partnership with the Rainbow Club Cork Centre for Autism
Community-Academic Research Links, University College Cork
This research was completed in collaboration with Rainbow Club Cork Centre for Autism (RCCCA) as a CARL project. CARL is an initiative by UCC that enables charities and community organisations to work in partnership with students to conduct research. RCCCA was set up by Karen and Jon O’Mahoney when they found out for themselves, how challenging it can be to access services and supports when needed for children with autism (ASD) along with support for their families. RCCCA supports the whole family with their needs, helping them to cope with the challenges they may encounter daily. RCCCA help raise awareness about people who have ASD, and what this looks like for the families involved. RCCCA supports the children with ASD, their siblings, and their parents in communicating effectively. RCCCA addresses how to cope with the diagnosis of ASD and supports the individual and family to develop new skills to navigate the world while providing an inclusive supportive space. RCCCA was set up by people who have a lived experience that they can share with others and understand their service users on a deeper level. The overarching aim of this research is to understand what ways children who have a sibling with ASD can be supported in partnership with RCCCA. This research is looking to aid RCCCA to move forward with their service and expand in the future to other supports through exploring the experiences of adult siblings with qualitative interviewing. The epistemological perspective that has been applied to this research is social constructivism which is based on and supported by an interpretive lens. From a social work perspective, it is important to advocate for the voice of the person, therefore interpretivism provides a grounding for the participants voice to be heard. This primary research was conducted through qualitative interviewing of six participants. The responses were transcribed and analysed for overarching themes. These themes are discussed to show the importance and need for sibling workshops, along with other forms of support in the findings and discussion. The conclusion and recommendations will identify the gaps in research and the importance of taking a holistic approach to exploring the family unit to better support the individuals. Several recommendations include family therapy, further education, awareness in schools, and a support line for siblings.
Autism spectrum disorder , ASD , Sibling with autism
Kearns, E. (2022) In what ways can children who have a sibling with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) be supported, in partnership with the Rainbow Club Cork Centre for Autism. Cork: Community-Academic Research Links, University College Cork.
© 2022, Emily Kearns.