Recent news articles


Code Club

Code Club Australia is a nationwide network of free, volunteer-led, after-school coding clubs for children aged 9-11.

We create projects for our volunteers to teach at after school coding clubs. The projects we make teach children how to program by showing them how to make computer games, animations and websites. Volunteers go to their local junior school or other venue, such as a library, for an hour a week and teach one project a week.

Code Club is about fun, creativity, and learning through exploring. It’s important that the children enjoy their time at Code Club. They should understand that they’re in charge of the computer, and can (and should) make it do what they want, not the other way around.

Other benefits of Code Club, such as learning about computational thinking, or developing expertise in coding, are secondary to these two objectives. Having said that, children will absorb all these wonderful skills as they work through the projects, rather than through didactic teaching.

We’d like to put a Code Club in every single primary school in the country. There are over 8,000 primary schools in Australia; it’s a big task, but we think we can do it!


The Cooking Crew (run by EACH)

The Cooking Crew will be up and running again as of next Wednesday 20th January. We will be meeting fortnightly for cooking only. Next week we are cooking red velvet beetroot cupcakes and focaccias. MMMMMMmmmmm.

The Crew is a group of young people who may be disengaged from school and community, are feeling isolated or are just looking for something to do. We meet fortnightly for cooking and just to catch up. If you like cooking and eating then this is the group for you! If not, you can just come and hang out. You don’t have to come to each session, just the days you feel like it.

It’s all free!! Don’t miss out!! 


Brain Training with Arrowsmith Program

Barbara Arrowsmith-Young has developed a brain training program based on neuroplasticity principles. 

From her website:

"The Arrowsmith Program is a cognitive program that harnesses the principles of neuroplasticity through the application of targeted cognitive exercises to overcome specific learning difficulties.

The Arrowsmith Program is based on the philosophy that it is possible to treat learning disabilities by identifying and strengthening cognitive capacities.

The Arrowsmith Program is a program of intensive and graduated cognitive exercises that are designed to strengthen the underlying weak cognitive capacities that are the source of the learning disabilities. Each student's program is based on a careful assessment to identify the specific learning difficulties.

Anyone who has taken up an activity that involves developing a skill, whether it is playing a musical instrument or learning a sport like tennis or golf, knows the importance of drills and of doing them properly. The same principle applies to the cognitive exercises that make up the Arrowsmith Program."

There are a few Melbourne primary school piloting the program. Further details, and links to media articles can be found here


Aspergers Vic on TV

Nat Chat is a locally produced chat show, on which host Mirella Rich has conducted a series of interviews with Aspergers Victoria representatives and people with Aspergers over the last few months.

These interviews are screening on Channel 31 on Thursdays at 2pm, and can also be accessed via the Nat Chat YouTube Channel 

Series 6 Episode 3 is with former President Lyndel Kennedy

Series 6 Episode 4 is with current President Tamsin Jowett

Series 6 Episodes 5 & 6 are with our friend Chris Varney, founder of the I Can Network

Later episodes will feature another friend of ours, Jeremy Samson, founder of Time 2 Train

We hope you enjoy learning more about the great work of Aspergers Victoria, and our wonderful friends and volunteers.


SPLAT Speech Pathology's Social Interaction Skills Programs for Term Four

SPLAT Speech Pathology services will be operating the following structured "Social Thinking" programs from the clinic office at 146 Springfield Rd, Blackburn North in Term Four 2015 - commencing Saturday 17th October (8 week programs).

1.  " We can make it better "   (Prep-Gde 2  @ 9.15am - 10.15am)   $90 per hour session x 8  =  $720 Term fee

Through the adventures of Bob and Maria, students are provided with the opportunity to learn and develop social thinking and related social skills in an enjoyable and engaging format.  Using the "We can make it better" stories, students develop a connection to the characters and are eager to learn about the new adventures each session, thus providing a strong foundation for teaching and developing a variety of ways to approach different situations. 

By reflecting on what the characters are "doing, thinking and feeling" throughout each story, the students have multiple opportunities to process and analyse verbal and nonverbal behaviours - a process that students then apply to problem solve their own social experiences.  

2.  "MOVIE TIME"  (Gde 3-6  @10.30am - 11.30am )   $75 per hour session x 8  =  $600 Termly fee

Movie time social learning helps to link the components of social thinking in a structured but dynamic learning process, supporting children in identifying contextual and fundamental "thinking with your eyes" information, expanding emotional vocabulary, understanding and tracking multiple perspectives, interpreting tone / facial/ nonverbal and gestural information, discussing expected and unexpected behaviours and consequences and experiencing empathy with characters.

SPLAT Speech Pathology also offers individual therapy to meet the specific needs of your child. Please contact Meg if you have any questions or wish to discuss any of the programs further.


Meg Dicker (Ba.Sp.Path)

Speech Pathologist  CPSP  M.S.P.A.   M.A.V.   M.R.C.S.L.T.

P.O. Box 330,Kerrimuir 3129

Ph: 0424 272 650

Specialising in Autism Spectrum Disorders and Inclusive Education


New Social Group starting 10th October 2015

Frossa Mrakas has asked us to let you know about a new social group she's starting:

"Rev heads incorporated

• Do you love cars?

• Are you between 18 – 26 years old?

• Would you like to share your passion with other like-minded car enthusiasts?

• Come and share your interest in all things cars and chat about your favourite motor vehicles

We are starting up a special interest social group that has cars as its central theme. These get togethers will provide you with the opportunity to share your interest and meet others who feel the same about cars. Come and participate in active discussion about the best car and have fun at the same time. You don’t have to be an expert, just someone who has a passion for cars.

Time: 2 – 3:30pm

Day: Saturday (starting 10th October 2015)

Cost: $5 (to cover room hire and refreshments)

Venue: 20 Banksia Street Burwood (Outside the Square psychology)

If you are interested or would like to know more please feel free to contact Frossa on 0418 174 545  "


Review of Program for Students with Disabilities - Survey now open

Aspergers Victoria has been asked to encourage our members to complete the the Program for Students with Disabilities (PSD) Review survey. Completing the survey will help inform how the Victorian Government can better meet the needs and maximise the learning of all children and young people with disabilities. The survey is now open. You can access the survey here.

The survey takes 10-20 minutes to complete. It will be open until 16 October. This is a great opportunity for the Government to hear from the voices of people with Aspergers, the better for all our children, and the better our educators will be trained in best practices to benefit all

NDIS Rollout for Victoria confirmed, over 100,000 Victorians to benefit

Last Wednesday one of PM Malcolm Turnball's first acts was to sign the NDIS Agreement with Victoria and NSW, which will lead to a doubling of funding for disability support at full rollout.

From the Victorian Government, Wednesday 16th September:

The Andrews Labor Government today signed an historic bilateral agreement with the Commonwealth outlining the rollout of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in Victoria over the next three years.

Premier Daniel Andrews was in Canberra to sign the landmark agreement with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and New South Wales Premier Mike Baird.

The Labor Government will contribute funding of $2.5 billion per year, with the Commonwealth contributing $2.6 billion, once the scheme is fully implemented – more than doubling the current funding for disability support.

Minister for Housing, Disability & Ageing Martin Foley joined disability advocates and stakeholders at the MCG to celebrate the achievement.

The bilateral agreement will benefit an estimated 105,000 Victorians – more than the number expected to fill the stadium at next month’s AFL Grand Final.

Following the successful Barwon pilot, the NDIS will be rolled out gradually across Victoria over the next three years starting July 1, 2016 in North East Melbourne, including Banyule, Darebin, Nillumbik, Whittlesea and Yarra.

The Central Highlands region will be next in January 2017 and the Greater Bendigo area in May 2017, with the rest of the state to follow. Victorian children under the age of six will receive priority help, in recognition of the developmental needs of young children.

The scheme will provide personalised care and support for people with a disability across the whole of Victoria by 1 July, 2019. Once fully rolled out, the NDIS will be the end of rationed services and waitlists for people with disability and their families.

Following today’s crucial first step, the Government will continue to work closely with people with disabilities, their families, the disabilities sector and other stakeholders involved in the roll out of this significant reform."

Source Premier of Victoria

For more detailed information, see Department Human Services Victoria

For rollout schedule by Local Government Area click here


PM announces newcomer as Social Services Minister

From ProBono Australia:

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has appointed a lesser known former WA State MP and Parliamentary Secretary to the PM, Christian Porter, as the new Minister for Social Services.

Prior to winning the Federal seat of Pearce in WA at the 2013 election, Christian Porter served as a Minister in the State Government, variously holding portfolios of Attorney General, Minister for Corrective Services and Treasurer of Western Australia.

“He is a formidable lawyer with strong public finance experience.He has a strong record of managing large budgets and making service delivery much more efficient,” Turnbull said in announcing the new Ministry.

- Click here to read the full article

Unfortunately the Liberal Government still hasn't created a Minister for Disability, which Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said, 'given the progress of the National Disability Insurance Scheme, the sector deserved its own ministry.'


Youth point is now live

Aspergers Victoria are excited to tell you about the Youth Point employment program. Youth Point is a free early intervention employment initiative developed by the IMVC and is now live. It aims to support young people to access real jobs – and improve their opportunity to build relationships and linkages with employers.

Please note, Youth Point currently covers the Local Government Areas of Boroondara, Manningham, Melbourne, Monash, Port Phillip, Stonnington, Whitehorse and Yarra.

Youth Point will provide 15-25 year olds with direct access to casual, part-time, full-time, traineeship, apprenticeship, volunteering and work experience opportunities.

Visit the Youth Point website for more information.


YouthSpark IT Career Pathways

Aspergers Victoria are pleased to let you know that applications for the YouthSpark IT careers program are open.

YouthSpark program supports young people, who face significant barriers to employment, to develop a career in IT.

Targeted at 18 to 26 year olds, the program involves pre-employment training, including a Certificate II in Information Technology, after which trainees apply for a six to 12 month traineeship with a leading Microsoft business partner in Melbourne. This is all done in a supportive environment that caters to young people facing barriers.

Classes start 5 October in Melbourne. Register your interest now or find out more on the YouthSpark webpage or by calling Emma Fawcett on 03 9418 7454.


Career exploration for young people on the spectrum

Aspergers Victoria are please to share with you information about a new program which has been developed to engage young people with ASD or learning dificulties in a career exploration program that focuses on their unique talents.  The program by Fingerprint Me, Australia’s First Youth Employment Academy, is run under the guidance of a Mental Health Practitioner and Careers Counsellor. 

The Insight Program has all the features of their core program (Scope) but with the needs of a young person with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) or learning difficulties in mind. Fingerprint Me see unique talents in all our students, and those on the autism spectrum or with learning challenges are no different. In fact, ‘neurodiversity’ can make a young person even better at certain jobs, so taking the time to discover these talents can make them succeed in their chosen industry.

FingerprintMe are hosting the following information sessions. Please feel free to register your interest by emailing Christine Kotsios at indicating which session you would like to attend:

Session 1:      Wednesday 9th September, 6pm – 7pm
                     Fingerprint Me Youth Employment Academy
                     50 Whitehorse Road Balwyn, Victoria

Session 2:      Thursday 17th September, 5pm – 6pm
                     OstaraAustraliaGeelong. 5/72 Gheringhap Street Geelong

Session 3:      If you are unable to attend Sessions 1 or 2, please register your interest to participate in a Webinar.

You can also visit their website for more information about the Fingerprintme Academy. 


Siblings Group 14th August cancelled

Unfortunately we've had to cancel tonight's meeting of the siblings support group 7:30pm Friday 14th August.

The Nerve Centre will not be open tonight.

Apologies if you are inconvenienced by this.  

The next siblings group will be on Friday 11th September 2015 from 7:30 - 9pm.

Please click here to email Helen, our Siblings Support group leader if you'd like more information.


Young Carers Encouraged to Apply for Study Support Funding

Aspergers Victoria is pleased to encourage young carers to apply for the 2016 Young Carer Bursary Programme which will open from 18 August 2015. 

The 2016 Young Carer Bursary Programme will deliver 333 bursaries worth $3,000 each to assist young carers up to 25 years old to continue studying and to relieve the financial pressure on them to work in addition to their caring.

The Bursaries programme has had overwhelmingly positive feedback from young carers and was developed in consultation with Carers Australia.

Online application forms for the 2016 busaries will be availabe on the Carer's Australia 'Young Carer's website at


This 'Sunday at the Stone Pony' donating proceeds to Aspergers Victoria, 12th July

Joe Wall from the small non-profit group 'Springsteen & Us' is hosting 'Sunday at the Stone Pony', a regular gathering at the Local Taphouse in St Kilda from 12 noon to 6pm.

For tomorrow's event, 12th July, all proceeds are being donated to Aspergers Victoria.

Thank you to Susan Robinson for suggesting Aspergers Vic.

From Joe: "If any of your volunteers, members, supporters were in the area they might want to come by and have an afternoon of great music (lots of Springsteen), craft beer and good people. Thanks."

Here's a link to the event:

Details on the venue:


Experts to inform National Carer Gateway

Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield, the Assistance Minister for Social Services has announced  this week the Australian Government's appointment of the members of a new Carer Gateway Advisory Group to lead an initiative to support Australia's carers.  The 12 member group consists of a variety of experts from service providers, peak bodies and individuals with a lived experience as a carer.   They intend to consult widely with carers and carer support agencies to ensure the gateway meets their needs.

From December 2015 the National Carer Gateway will provide the front door to Government services via a single phone number and website where carers can find relevant information about the services available to them.  The full media statement can be viewed on the Senator's website


Girls and Autism on Radio National

Radio National aired a 30 minute segment a few days ago on Autism and Women, with some fascinating interviews with Aspie women.  Host Lynne Malcolm speaks with Temple Grandin, Uk's Francesca Happé and Hannah Belcher,  Melbourne based clinical psychologist Dr Janine Manjiviona, and parent Donna Rigoni.

It will be broadcast again this Saturday 27 June at 5:30am on Radio National at 621AM in Melbourne or if you prefer you can listen to it by clicking on the link below to download the audio, read the transcript or access the podcast.

All In the Mind Girls and Autism


Spectrum Speech Winter Newsletter

Our friends at Spectrum Speech have shared their Winter newsletter, which contains some great information and activities to help make the winter school holidays enjoyable for all.  

Check it out by visiting their website


Are you in the loop?

Aspergers Victoria are pleased to let you know about the Disability Loop intiative run by the Australian Federation of Disability Organisations.  Its a great way to find out more about the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Through Disability Loop you can:

  • Find a great selection of resources relating to the NDIS
  • Find out how the NDIS is working for other people
  • Have your say about the NDIS
  • Keep up to date with news and events about the NDIS

Disability Loop is a project that has been paid for by the NDIS. It is run by, and for, people with disability and their allies. Find out more by visiting