Autism and the Therapeutic Environment, Fri 11th October 2024

A one-day course exploring Autism.

This training is aimed at counsellors and counsellors in training.

The day will look at:

  • The underpinnings of autism – what is happening in the brain and the sensory systems. These areas are vital to understand as they are the foundations of working with an autistic person.
  • Anxiety & trauma and how this shows up in autistic people.
  • What difficulties autistic people can face when it comes to communication, processing and understanding other people.
  • Once we understand the ‘why’s’, we will work on ways of supporting to have the best chance of connecting and helping including a look at our own biases and assumptions to look at what we can change.

There will be a mix of presenting, discussion and activities to re-enforce concepts, understanding and how to move forward.

Date: Friday 11th October 2024

Time: 9.00am-5.00pm

Venue: This training will be run in person in our Garden Room at Wellspring House, 78 High Street, Starbeck, Harrogate, North Yorkshire, HG2 7LW.

Trainer: Jemma Swales

Cost: £100 per person or £90pp for Students.

Prices include VAT, CPD certificate and light refreshments.

Book here


About the trainer

Jemma is a trained and experienced professional, offering support to autistic individuals and their families. She has been working with people on the autistic spectrum since the completion of her Psychology Degree in 2006. She worked at a day service in London for adults with autism, primarily as a care worker and latterly, was given the post of ‘Positive Behaviour Support Coordinator’. In this role, she was responsible for working with each of the 40 service users to produce behavioural plans, support the care team with any behavioural challenges and to work with the psychology team to devise strategies to support each individual. During her time at the service, she completed a post-graduate certificate in autism from the University of Birmingham.

Following her time at the day service, she worked as a transition coordinator for Hertfordshire County Council. She worked with families to support them with the beginning stages of transition from children’s services to adult, helping them set up direct payments, develop care plans and arrange respite support. She worked with a range of disabilities and was often called on by co-workers to support them with more complex cases involving those on the autistic spectrum.

Since 2011, she have been working as a self-employed autism practitioner in the Cumbria area. Her service offers person-centred home support which is not constrained by time limits. In 2013 she co-founded Autus Cumbria Ltd, a not-for-profit organisation support individuals and families in the local area.

She has training in areas covering, OCD, anxiety, Intensive Interaction, epilepsy management, Makaton, positive dynamic handling and first aid.  She has experience working with conditions such as OCD and chronic anxiety and with behaviour such as self-harming, ‘violence’ towards the self and others and sexualised behaviour.

She works alongside Dr Phoebe Caldwell who has over 40 years’ experience working with autistic people and is one of the pioneers of intensive interaction and she is one of the co-authors of a book, Responsive Communication.


For more information contact: or 01423 881 881

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Wellspring House

78 High Street, Starbeck
Harrogate, HG2 7LW

01423 881 881

Opening times

Monday 9am - 8.30pm
Tuesday 9am - 8.30pm
Wednesday 9am - 8.30pm
Thursday 9am - 8.30pm
Friday 9am - 4pm
Saturday & Sunday Closed

We work to the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) Ethical Framework for Good Practice and the Association of Christian Counsellors (ACC) Code of Ethics.

Wellspring is an Affiliated Organisation number AT 326 of the Association of Christian Counsellors (ACC) and a partner in the Route One VCS Partnership.