LONDON, March 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Brookdale Care, the independent provider of residential care services for people living with Autism and other Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD), is inviting MPs and care commissioners to spend a day with residents and staff at four of its residential locations in Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire and North London, as part of a campaign to raise understanding of Autism and ASD in conjunction with World Autism Awareness Day on 2nd April, 2009.

World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) was first instituted by the United Nations General Assembly in 2007 with the aim of raising awareness about Autism and ASD in every member state. Each year charities and providers of support undertake awareness raising activities around this day.

This year, in conjunction with WAAD and as part of its 'Autism: The World As We See It' campaign, Brookdale Care is hosting a number of open days at Eynesbury House, St Neots; Ganwick House, Potters Bar; Kemble House, Friern Barnet and Sheridan House, Sandy. These events are designed to provide an insight into a day in the life of a person living with ASD and to help remove some of the common misconceptions associated with Autism and ASD.

Lesa Walton, Care Development Director of Brookdale Care, said today:

Over half a million people in the UK are living with Autism, yet many people have no idea what Autism is or what it means for someone to be on the autistic spectrum. This lack of understanding can have a severe detrimental impact on people who are living with Autism who simply want to live a normal life and are looking for the appropriate level of support to achieve this.

At Brookdale Care we work with people living with Autism and ASD every single day. We see the wonderful opportunities that open up for our residents when they have the right support and we sincerely believe that anyone with Autism should have this right. That is why we are doing what we can to help raise awareness of Autism and ASD on World Autism Awareness Day so that we can draw attention to the real and pressing needs of some of the most vulnerable people in our communities.

Notes to Editors:

Brookdale Care

- Established in 1995, Brookdale is a family-run company specialising exclusively in the delivery of dedicated hospital and residential care facilities for people with Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASD). - Brookdale Care provides specialist care services at our purpose built hospital at Milton Park in Wyboston, Bedfordshire - the first of its kind in the UK - and a range of residential homes in Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Cambridgeshire and North London. - Brookdale Care's philosophy is to deliver the safe, comfortable living environments and structured routines needed by people living with ASD and to provide individually tailored support and encouragement to help each service user maximise their potential. - Brookdale's Milton Park Independent Hospital and nine residential homes enable us to provide a complete range of services across the autistic spectrum, from those diagnosed with Autism and Learning Disabilities to those with High Functioning Autism or Asperger syndrome. - Brookdale offers the following range of services: - Specialist staff trained in ASD and challenging behaviours - Comprehensive and ongoing assessments and care plans - Specialist support from a multi-disciplinary team of clinicians and therapists - Structured education, employment and leisure activities - Bespoke educational courses at local colleges - Independent living skills - Community integration and involvement - For further information please visit our website at

World Autism Awareness Day

- The United Nations has declared April 2nd World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD), with the aim to increase and develop world knowledge of Autism and provide a voice to the millions of individuals worldwide who remain undiagnosed. - In the UK, WAAD will contribute to ongoing efforts to persuade the government to recognise Autism as distinct from other conditions, deserving urgent strategic planning, policy development and dedicated resource allocation. - Despite one in one hundred people having Autism in the UK, the needs of people affected by the condition often go unrecognised and the impact upon individuals can be devastating, along with the wider social impact. - Research suggests that Autism costs the UK approximately GBP28 billion pounds a year, but through investing in supporting people to make a full contribution to society, this figure could be significantly reduced. - Autism campaigners are calling for the government to guarantee: - Individuals with Autism are not unfairly discriminated against and their rights as people with disabilities as well as citizens are promoted - That action is taken to remove barriers to access and address the communication and sensory needs of people with Autism - including raising public awareness - The numbers of people with Autism are counted to ensure equality of provision of, and access to, services and support - Adequate research funds are made available to increase understanding of Autism and develop appropriate interventions and support - That resources are made available to support those living with Autism and to ensure those working with people with Autism are appropriately trained - For further information please visit WAAD's website at

For further information please contact Natasha Graham at the Brookdale Care Press Office on: +44-(0)207-819-6274

For further information please contact Natasha Graham at the Brookdale Care Press Office on: +44-(0)207-819-6274