Autism Awareness Training

Donegal Local Development Company Gaoth Dobhair is organising two evenings – one In Dore and one in the Carrick/Kilcar area – on Autism Awareness. This short training session is suitable for parents, carers, early childhood education workers, teachers etc.  If you are interested in attending please contact Angela or Bridget on 074 9532712


Session 1             11/09/2017         Ionad Naomh Pádraig, Dore        6:45pm – 8:45pm

Session 2             14/09/2017         Carrick/Kilcar Area                          6:45pm – 8:45pm


Course Title Autism Awareness 2 hours
Course Content




This introductory course aims to enhance knowledge about Autism.

The course will include:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder – Definition, characteristics and behaviours in the young child with Autism
  • How the features of ASD can impact on the young child
  • Communication and sensory difficulties associated with Autism


  • Participants will recognise the signs and symptoms of conditions associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Participants will have an understanding of the communication and sensory difficulties associated with Autism Spectrum Disorder
  • Participants will have increased awareness of working with parents, carers and other professionals

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Infant Mental Health Awareness Week runs from June 13th-19th.           

This week provides an opportunity to focus attention on the wellbeing, social and emotional development of our babies and young children. It highlights the importance of early relationships and a relationship based approach to interventions with infants and families. As our understanding of IMH and its evidence base develops, so also does our knowledge of how to apply this knowledge and an ‘IMH lens’ to interactions with infants, parents and caregivers in health and social services. 

What is infant mental health?

Infant Mental health (IMH) refers to the healthy social and emotional development of Infants starting at conception up to three years of age.

The first 1000 days of life are recognised as a critical period of opportunity to support infant mental health. Decades of research have shown that it is the quality of the early caregiver relationship that is a significant determinant of the infant’s healthy social and emotional development and in turn physical health, right up to adulthood.


The National Healthy Childhood Programme has embedded IMH as the foundation of the development of its resources and in the approach of the delivery of the universal child health service. This embedding of key messages can be seen in the My Child suite of books ( and also on  where key messages around bonding and relationship building have been embedded for the parent/caregiver.


In clinical practice the topic of IMH has been included for the first time in the National Standardised Child Health Record. To build on this, the National Healthy Childhood Programme have just completed a suite of three eLearning units which are now available on HSEland for healthcare practitioners / caregivers who are working with children and families.  


Throughout the week you will see videos and key IMH messaging being promoted on the HSE MyChild social media pages ( Facebook / Instagram ). Keep an eye out in the National Newspapers for articles from our experts also. (IrishTimes article)  


In addition The National Healthy Childhood Programme have developed a series of ten practical videos with HSE expert advice which are now available on YouTube and on the relevant pages on the website.

These videos (2-3 minutes each) are aimed at parents/guardians of children (0 – 3 years).

These new video resources are available here while lots more expert advice for every step of pregnancy, baby and toddler health can also be found at

There are a suite of posters available focusing on the promotion of IMH messaging to order from

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