News, Events & Dragons!!

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Welcome to our July Newsletter!
express News in Brief

We are as always busy running the office, groups, fundraising and organising events. Our next big challenge is the Kingston Rotary Club, Dragon Boat Challenge! We need you! We have a number of young people on our team and we are looking for some more adults to join the team. See below for details.

In our other news, there has been so much going on! As you may already know we were due to go to the Growth Committee in March. However, the item was pulled from the agenda as a Freedom of Information request was submitted. It now transpires this was not from the person stated. Alongside this we have met again with the council, Adult Services, Children's Services and the Lead Commissioner and we are now required to provide even more evidence that there is a need for services! We need your help! Please do take a few minutes to complete our survey and share with other parents/carers.

We will keep you updated!

As you will know if you have been an Express supporter for a while we run 6 different support groups! We try to cover age groups and different issues over different times and days in the week so that hopefully there'll be one to suit you. We are also available in the office to drop in if you just need someone to talk to who gets it!

We run Rose Theatre talks and events bi-monthly which are always oversubscribed and where we meet many new parents. Dates vary so please do check the newsletter and our facebook page for details. 

Our support group on the first Thursday of the month  (term time) has now changed by popular demand to be our Mum's Group at the same venue as our Dad's Group - the Waggon and Horses pub in Surbiton. The first one will take place on Thursday 7th July, 7.30-9.30pm. All mums, grandmas and female carers of young people with an autism spectrum condition are welcome to attend. Email to register your interest.

We run a support group on the second Tuesday of the month 9.00-11.00am at the Express offices in Tolworth. Drop in straight from school drop off and/or bring your preschoolers along. This is an informal group for all parents and carers of young people on the spectrum whether pre-diagnosis, newly diagnosed or experienced with lots of support of what worked for you to share. This month it is on Tuesday 12th July. 

Our popular Dad's Group is on the second Wednesday of the month and takes place at the Waggon and Horses pub in Surbiton. This month it is on Wednesday 13th July, 7.30-9.30pm. All dads, granddads and  male carers of young people with an autism spectrum condition are welcome to attend. Email to register your interest.

We also run a specific support group for parents/carers of young people going through transition. Our TYA Group (Teens, Young Adults) runs on the third Monday of the month from the Express offices in Tolworth, 7.30-9.00pm. The TYA Group is a place where you can share similar experiences dealing with puberty, transition to secondary, college or work. These are parent/carer led and have proved much needed. Our next group is on Monday 18th July. 

Finally, we run a group at Moor Lane on the last Tuesday of the month (term time) 1.00-2.30pm. 

In addition we run an EHCP and DLA support service by appointment only. These are very specific 1:1 support to help you through the process. Email to arrange an appointment. 

Please do let us know what you like to see in the newsletter, what you would like to see more of or less of. Have a look at the links, we try to include as many informative articles as possible. 

Please could we ask as many people as possible to sign up to easyfundraising. It doesn't cost you anything and you can raise money for express when you shop online. You can also set up a regular donation via direct debit on our local giving page.
We have an excellent dedicated small team of volunteers but we really do need support with fundraising to help cover our increasing costs. Please do consider fundraising for us, however big or small it all helps! Some ideas ... Coffee mornings, cake sales, quiz night in your local, good as new sale or pamper evening. Please also nominate us in your local supermarket schemes or look out for community funds we can apply for. We really need your help!

Your comments are always welcome - please click here to contact us. We look forward to hearing from you. 

For further information on our upcoming events you can visit & for other events locally

best wishes,
Annette & Tracey

express Support Groups
If you haven't yet been to one of our parent/carer support groups, please do come along. We are all very friendly and these groups are run by and for you. These groups are for whether you are currently going through diagnosis, have just received a diagnosis or have valuable experience to share. We run both daytime and evening groups. 
Bi monthly (dates via newsletter) at the Rose Theatre
NEW Mum's Group 1st Thursday of the month (term time) at the Waggon & Horses 7:30-9:30pm
NEW 2nd Tuesday of the month at the Express Offices 9:00-11:00am  
Dad's Group 2nd Wednesday of the month at Waggon & Horses 7:30-9:30pm
TYA 3rd Monday of the month at the Express Offices 7:30-9:00pm   
NEXT: JULY 18th 
Last Tuesday of the month (term time) at Moor Lane Centre 1:00-2:30pm  
Every Tuesday EHCP 1:1 Support by Appt. - Express Offices 9:00-12:00pm  Contact or (to arrange appt.)
Take a look at our new video - An Introduction to Express CIC
Thank you to John Williams who made this lovely video for us.
Express Mum's Group

A new group for Mums by popular demand! The group will run from the Waggon and Horses in Surbiton 7.30-9.30pm on the first Thursday of the month. Come along, say hello and meet some other Mums. To register your interest, please email

Express Dad's Group
A new group for Dads facilitated by our patron, friend and comedian John Williams of 'My Son's Not Rainman' blog, show and soon to be released book!. The group runs from the Waggon and Horses in Surbiton 7.30-9.30pm on the second Wednesday of the month. Come along, say hello and meet some other Dads. To register your interest, please email

Team Express is entered into the Rotary's annual Dragon Boat Challenge taking place on Sunday 17th July 2016. This promises to be a great day for all the family to enjoy as well as supporting Express to continue to provide services. You don't need any experience to take part. All training is given on the day, so just bring lots of enthusiasm and a good sense of humour! 

Take a look at last year's event

We have a number of young people for our team but we need more adults to take part.

Please email us at if you are up for the challenge!

We have a local giving fundraising page set up for the event

Things Not To Say To An Autistic Person
Things Not To Say To An Autistic Person
'The Golden Binder'
A resource has been created by SEND Family Voices working with AfC and representatives from Health, Social Care, Schools, Early Years and Post 16 to create a complete set of guidance documents relating to “Support for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)”. The resource is nicknamed the “Golden Binder”. 
Parent Carer Needs Assessments
Parent carers of children under 18 years of age have a stand-alone right to assessments and services under the Children’s and Families Act 2014. This is called a Parent Carer Needs Assessment (PCNA).

Parent Carer Needs Assessment forms are now available on AFC Local Offer website.

RUILS Sitting & Befriending Service

We can help find a Sitter/Befriender to support your family, give you a break from caring or to be a companion to your child or teenager helping them to access social and leisure activities.Sitters are interviewed, DBS checked, referenced and trained. They can:

  • Babysit at home while you go out,
  • Help you with the children at home,
  • Accompany your child or young person to an activity they enjoy,
  • Take part with your child/young person at an activity,
  • 'Hang out' at home with your young person while you go out.

To register with the service - download our Registration Form and email or send it to Sue Robson: or call Sue on 020 8831 6083 to discuss your needs. She will arrange a home visit with you to tell you more about the service and to find out more about your and your family's needs. 

Summer Aiming High Short Break Funding

Funding is available to cover the cost of the place of out of school short break activities for up to two days per week. Also funding is available to support inclusion in mainstream out of school short break activities by covering the cost of a one to one support worker, if required for up to two days per week.

Interesting Articles :

Psychiatric Problems Common in Siblings of People With Autism
10 Things I Wish People Knew About Dating Someone on the Autism Spectrum

Schedule of events now updated including upcoming open meetings.

Did you know that whenever you buy anything online - from your weekly shop to your annual holiday - you could be raising a free donation for Express?


There are nearly 3,000 retailers on board ready to make a donation, including the holiday companies above as well as Amazon, John Lewis, Aviva, thetrainline and Sainsbury's – it doesn't cost you a penny extra!

It's really simple, all you have to do is:

1. Join.
Head to and sign up for free.

2. Shop.
Every time you shop online, go to easyfundraising first, pick the retailer you want and start shopping.

3. Raise.
After you’ve checked out, that retailer will make a donation to your good cause for no extra cost whatsoever!

There are no catches or hidden charges and Express will be really grateful for your donations.

Thank you for your support.

Express CIC - 'creating a hub in the heart of the community, supporting young people with autism and their families, a place for everyone'
Reg. no. 8202424
Copyright © 2016 Express CIC, All rights reserved.
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