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Children and young people with autism

This is a short film which tells the story of a few Enfield families on their journey from diagnosis to independence.

If you are concerned that your child is showing symptoms of an autism spectrum disorder it is important to know what to do next. 

A referral should be made by the professional or person who holds the most information about the child or young person’s needs.

Under six

If your child is under six, they will be assessed by the Child Development Team (CDT) which is a multi-disciplinary team based in Community Pediatrics at Cedar House. Anyone can make a referral, the most common referrers are:

  • Your child’s Health Visitor
  • Your child’s Speech and Language Therapist
  • The Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCo) at your child’s school or nursery
  • Your child’s Doctor or GP

You can refer your child directly to the CDT, although it is always helpful to have information from the professionals involved with your child. Find out more about the referral criteria.

Over six

Autism Spectrum assessment for children and young people over the age of six is undertaken by the Enfield Child Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS) multi-disciplinary team. At present, CAMHS do not accept direct referrals from parents, carers or young people. Referrals are usually made by the child’s educational setting or from a professional already involved.

CAMHS may liaise with the CDT team where there is concern over a child or young person’s global development.

If you think your child or young person has autism you can find out more about getting a diagnosis on the National Autistic Society website.

Once your child has received a diagnosis from the Enfield Child Development Team (CDT) you will be invited to a series of parent information sessions called Making a Positive Start (MAPS). MAPS is a series of four weekly sessions for parents or carers of children under six, recently diagnosed with autism and living in Enfield. The sessions are run by representatives from Enfield Speech and Language, Educational Psychology, Occupational Therapy and the National Autistic Society.

Cygnet parent information sessions involve five, core, weekly sessions to parents and carers who have a child or young person aged between 6 and 18 years, with a diagnosis of autism, living in Enfield and still in education. There are additional sessions on sibling relationships as well as puberty, sexual wellbeing and relationships. Cygnet sessions are run by Educational Psychologists and Parent Support Advisors who work in the Enfield Advisory Service for Autism (EASA).

You can book your place by downloading the application form on the EASA website.

Understanding autism - All About Me is a short intervention designed for positively disclosing and explaining their autism diagnosis to individual children and young people. Peer awareness can be built on the individual work with your child or young person. If they are struggling with their diagnosis, other therapeutically informed approaches may help.

For more information, see our preparing for adulthood page.

The Enfield Advisory Service for Autism (EASA) multi-professional team provides comprehensive advise, guidance and training for those working with or caring for children and young people with autism. This includes  training, support, workshops and further advice for parents and carers and a range of useful links and resources.

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