Joanne Watkins

Joanne Watkins

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Thanks for visiting our funraising page. Pam and I are running (non stop may I add!) The Birmingham Half Marathon for The FASD Trust. This is all Pam's fault may I add as when she text me saying she wants to run it for The FASD Trust..... what else could be my reply... since it is my adopted son affected by FASD.... and I work for The FASD Trust......... 'Ahh that's lovely Pam.... and I'll do it with you!!'

FASD (Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders) is an umbrella term for a range of mental, behavioural, physical and learning disabilities caused by prenatal exposure to alcohol. It is 100% preventable by not consuming alcohol whilst pregnant. Each child is effected slightly differently on a spectrum and is dependant on a variety of things including, amounts consumed and maternal age and health. More children are affected by FASD than autism in the UK but it is often misdiagnosed and definitely misunderstood.

For my son, he struggles with transitions and choice, has autistic traits and ADHD type bevaiour due to sensory overload, he struggles to process and order information, emotional dysregulation, sensory processing problems and has difficulty concentrating and staying focused. Children with FASD try, on average, 5 times harder at school to still be behind! 

The FASD Trust provide support, information and training for parents, carers, adoption social workers, health professionals and teachers, they coordinate UK wide support group run by volunteers (Jo runs the Solihull one), they have healthcare and educational professional forums, develop a range of resources and have recently helped form an All Party Parliamentary Group to raise awareness at Government level and encourage change in clearer alcohol labelling and advice to pregnant women. They do some wonderful work on a small budget. Hopefully in the next few years we will have better diagnosis, more trained experts and better support for all families affected by FASD. Thanks for doing you bit to help this!!

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