In early April Autism CRC Participants attended a one-day workshop in Brisbane. Participant Day 2019 was attended by over 90 people representing 27 organisations, including 13 Essential Participants and more than 20 alumni from the Academy Research and Future Leaders programs.
Several Participants, including Aspect, Autism West and the Tasmanian Autism Specific Early Learning and Care Centre showcased the collaborative research outcomes that have come about through their involvement with Autism CRC. The event gave all stakeholders an opportunity to share experiences and ideas with others participating in the CRC, to gain an overview of our progress and achievements as a CRC to date and to discuss our future direction, goals and operating structures beyond our current program.
The keynote address was given by Belinda Robinson, Chair of the CRC Association, who offered strong words of encouragement and support. As a network she encouraged us all to think about how we can each be champions for Autism CRC and evidence-based autism research and outcomes we deliver to enhance the lives of people on the spectrum. Belinda suggested we look for champions amongst politicians and influences who can advocate for continued investment in Autism CRC to continue beyond our current funding cycle. She stated “Where need is articulated and return on investment clearly demonstrated, governments will respond.”
Feedback and outcomes from the day will help to inform future directions and activities as we move towards a future beyond 2021. Feedback from the day was positive, with attendees indicating they appreciated the opportunity to hear about our achievements and contribute to our vision for the future. One attendee said, "The truly inclusive nature of the day and the CRC approach really struck a chord."
Our sincere thanks to all who attended for their collaborative contributions to the day. Particular thanks to those who gave presentations or facilitated the discussions throughout the day.