Abroad, Landsforeningen Autisme, Visits

Princess Marie attends the Scottish Autism 50th Anniversary Conference in Glasgow, Scotland

Today, Princess Marie was in Glasgow, Scotland to attend the Scottish Autism 50th Anniversary Conference as Patron of the Danish Association for Autism.

Scottish Autism was established in 1968 by a group of parents and they are now the largest provider of autism-specific services in Scotland and a leading authority and advocate for good autism practice. Scottish Autism aims to “help those diagnosed with autism to lead full and enriched lives and become valuable members of the community they live in. We also seek to share our knowledge and expertise with parents, carers and other professionals in order to support the development of skills and strategies needed to provide the best care and support for autistic people. Building partnerships locally, nationally and internally provides us with the exciting opportunity to learn and share our knowledge of good autism practice with other countries. “

Scottish Autism Princess Marie-001 (1).jpg
©Tina Norris

Scottish Autism’s Deputy CEO Charlene Tait is a member of the Council of Administration for Autism-Europe which is an association gathering almost 90 national and regional organizations advocating for the rights of autistic people from 30 European countries. Autism affects an estimated 50,000 people in Scotland or 1 in 100 people. In Denmark there are approximatively 70,000 people diagnosed with autism, it is more than 1 in 100.

Scottish Autism offers a wide range of support services for people with autism in Scotland: “We provide a wide range of flexible and innovative support services for children and adults across Scotland, each with a focus on improving quality of life. Central to this is recognizing that each person has a unique set of needs. We create personalized support plans which are based on an individual’s own strengths and motivations and on achieving outcomes which are meaningful to them.”

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© Scottish Autism , New Struan School

These support services include children services such as outreach support, respite, and short breaks services and education service to “take the time to build up a deep understanding of each young person, taking into account their processing and thinking style in order to maximize their learning potential. Our dedicated team of practitioners receives regular autism specific training and they are equipped with the knowledge and skills to enable each child and young person to have positive life experiences.”

But the association also focuses on support for adults such as supported living services which aim to help developing independence but also transition support services that aim “to assess an individual’s needs and build the skills and strategies required to enable them to move on to the most appropriate, sustainable and longer-term setting.”

Another important part of Scottish Autism’s support services is dedicated to the families in order to help them understand autism better and to help them whenever they need it but also to the professionals. Indeed the association has an advice line as well as a toolbox and training service available.

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In order to celebrate their 50th anniversary, Scottish Autism organized several events all year with the big focus being this international two-day conference “Innovation in Autism Practice: The Future is Calling”.

The program of the conference was influenced by “a contemporary view that embraces autism as a developmental difference and focuses on a capacity view of the individual”. Scottish Autism also sponsored The Participatory Autism Research Collective (PARC) to host an Autism Fringe which included workshops, discussions and information sharing.

parc
© PARC

Princess Marie, as Patron of the Danish Association for Autism, made the opening speech after the welcoming speech by Charlene Tait. Sadly, the Court hasn’t updated Princess Marie’s speech yet but I’ll update the post as soon as they do. We do know she talked about the value of sharing knowledge and experience as well as the importance of working together to improve the lives of autistic people.

After Princess Marie’s speech, Charlene Tait made a keynote speech called ‘The Future is Calling’.

The second keynote speech was held by Professor Roy Richard Grinker from the George Washington University called ‘Autism and the Disappearing Stigma of Mental Illness.’

Here’s a very important quote from Ruth Moyse’s seminar:

About Princess Marie attending the conference, Charlene Tait said: “We had the pleasure of meeting with Princess Marie at last year’s ‘Meeting of Minds’ autism event in Copenhagen to discuss a number of areas where Scotland and Denmark are working together in close collaboration. She is a real champion of the autism community and has been a great supporter of the joint working going on between ourselves and Autism Denmark. We look forward to welcoming her to Scotland and to hearing her speak at this year’s conference.” 

Princess Marie indeed attended the Meeting of Minds conference last year in Copenhagen and I believe she will attend this year’s Meeting of Minds conference on November 29th although this wasn’t confirmed by the Court yet. This year’s theme is ‘Autism in Doubt’. According to the Danish Association for Autism’s website, some of the topics that will be discussed at the conference are :

  • “Co-occurring mental disorder”
  • “You don´t look autistic!”
  • “What is Autism?”
  • “Sex differences in boys and girls with ASD: Diagnostic criteria, stress, anxiety, and depression”
  • “Aging and being autistic: Lessons (not) learned.”

MOM-annonce_mindre

After the keynote speeches at the Scottish Autism Conference, seminars started while Princess Marie left the Grand Central Hotel where the conference was held to go to the Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum along with Deputy CEO Charlene Tait. The museum is part of an initiative along with the other eight Glasgow museums to become more autism aware. This year they launched a new programme of early openings, autism-friendly workshops, and resources. In 2017, three of those museums already made improvements and now have trained Autism Champions to raise staff awareness, visual storyboards and pre-visit information to help plan the visit and sensory kits that can be borrowed.

Kelvingrove_Museum,_Glasgow._-_panoramio
© Robert Powell,Wikicommons

At the Museum, Princess Marie met with students from the Iceberg Productions including Jason Donaldson, Daniel Page, Lee Roibrown, Emma Stanley and John Sapseed. According to Scottish Autism’s press release: “Iceberg Productions is a group of young autistic film-makers which is based at Blue Central, one of Scottish Autism’s Day Services. This project is led by John Innes and Ian Noble of the Untold Motion Picture Company. Ian and John have considerable experience in film-making, photography and sound recording and work closely with Scottish Autism, running a number of film-making taster courses for the individuals supported by the charity. The aspiration is to enable autistic individuals who are interested in film-making to be part of an in-house production company.” 

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©Tina Norris

One of the students, Jason, was able to interview Princess Marie and he then took a selfie with her which was shared on his school’s twitter account. Jason is a student at the New Struan School which is a day and residential school for students between 5 and 19 years old. Their vision is “to enable our pupils to become included, confident learners in the community. We know that young people with autism can be successful learners and we strive to provide the structured and supportive environment which enables them to reach their full potential. ” 

When asked by Jason what was the best thing about being a Princess, Marie said : “The best thing is to be out for a day like this and meet people like those I’ve met here today in Scotland.”

The school even has a rabbit named Freddie and he has his own twitter account! He even congratulated Jason for his meeting with Princess Marie and said that the class had been checking Twitter all day to see if there was any photo of Jason! Jason said Marie was lovely and it looks like it was an amazing moment for everyone involved!

Princess Marie and the students posed for a photo in front of their taxis at the end of the event and Glasgow Taxis tweeted that they were honored to be transporting Marie today.

You can see a video of Marie’s day in Glasgow here.

In the evening, Princess Marie attended the evening dinner at the Grand Central Hotel which is the Hotel where she stayed. Sadly, there is only one photo so far. I believe Marie wore a new dress but I’m not sure.

In their report about the day, the Danish Association for Autism said: “The Autism National Association expresses its sincere thanks to HKH Princess Marie for the great involvement in the autism area, both nationally and internationally – and for the amazing work of the protector and in the meeting with autistic people and their families. “

For this day in Scotland, Princess Marie wore a fully recycled outfit. She chose to wear a Giorgio Armani double-breasted that she first wore in 2014 and black trousers.

giorgio
©1st Dibs

She paired the outfit with her Etui Bags grey clutch and ufo pumps from 2010. In one of the photos, we can see Marie carrying a new purple tote bag but I don’t have any ID for it yet.

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She wore the same outfit except for the trousers when she debuted the jacket in 2014 at an event to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the Epilepsy Children Hospital of Dianalund.

We’ll next see Princess Marie with Prince Joachim this weekend in Braine, France where they’ll commemorate the end of the First World War.

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Landsforeningen Autisme, Visits

Princess Marie visits ‘Ready to Start’ and the Youth Education Center

On Friday, Princess Marie visited a project sponsored by the National Association for Autism as Patron as well as the Youth Education Center.

The project ‘Ready to Start’ which aims to help young autistic people getting a job was created in collaboration with the Youth Foundation who helps autistic people since 2007: ‘ ‘Ready to Start’ is a graduation process targeted at the majority of young people with an autism diagnosis. The course is conducted throughout the country in cooperation with a number of educational institutions and partner companies, offering nothing less than job guarantee for the course participants.’

Several Danish companies have accepted to collaborate with the ‘Ready to Start’ program – including Fakta and ILVA – ensuring that every person taking part in the program will have a job in the end.

As Patron of the National Association for Autism since 2011, Princess Marie visited the Fakta store where two young autistic people got a job thanks to the ‘Ready to Start’ program. These two people explained to Princess Marie how important it was for them to have a job, to be a part of the workforce and to meet new people in their everyday life. Since the beginning of the collaboration between Fakta and the ‘Ready to Start’ program,  70 autistic people have been employed at a national level in the chain’s stores.

After her visit to the Fakta store, Princess Marie visited the Youth Education Center -created by the Youth Foundation- where she took part in the graduation ceremony of six students. She then had the opportunity to learn more about the various activities in the education center.

You can see a photo of Marie’s full outfit here and a video of Marie at the event here.

For these events, Princess Marie wore one of her classic outfits. The jacket is old and still UFO but she wore a new blue top by Tara Jarmon. It seems like Tara Jarmon is becoming one of her regular brands now.

tarajarmontop
© Tara Jarmon

She wore black pants with her By Malene Birger grey pumps and her very old UFO clutch.

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© By Malene Birger

Marie also wore the brooch she first wore at Prince Henrik’s funeral. I can’t help but wonder if maybe it was a gift from Prince Henrik but unfortunately, I don’t think we’ll ever get confirmation of the origin of the brooch. It seems that she also wore her Christine Hvelplund ‘H&A’ necklace.

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© Anders Riis

We will see Princess Marie and Prince Joachim next Friday when they will attend the premiere of a play.

Kattegatcentret, Landsforeningen Autisme, Visits

Princess Marie visits Katrinebjergskole and attends Kattegatcentret’s 25th anniversary

Yesterday, Princess Marie attended two events for her patronages. She first visited Katrinebjergskole in Aarhus as Patron of the Danish National Association for Autism.

Autisme
© Landsforeningen Autisme

Princess Marie received a warm welcome from the children upon arrival!

Katrinebjergskole is a model school for the Danish NEST program. The NEST program is established in New York and is based on the idea that children are more alike than different. The NEST classes were established in 2016 and autistic students are in class with neurotypical students. (ie students who are not autistic).

Princess Marie had the opportunity to meet with some of the children and their teachers to learn more about their experience in NEST classes.

 

In the afternoon, Princess Marie was in Grenaa to attend the 25th-anniversary celebrations of Kattegatcentret, of which she is Patron since 2013.

Kattegatcentret is a sea center which opened in 1993 and it has over 250 different animal species. Its mission is to mediate knowledge about the sea to the general public, so more people are able to enjoy, understand and guard the seas.

More about the Kattegatcentret:

“The Kattegatcenter is a charitable fund and is run on a non-profit basis. In addition to the exhibition areas, the Kattegatcenter has an active schools service, which is used by over 12,000 pupils and students each year.

We work with public aquaria and zoos around the world via our memberships of DAZA (Danish Association of Zoos and Aquaria) and the world’s largest zoo and aquaria organization, EAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria). These memberships are very important for our breeding programs and for exchanging animals.”

Princess Marie at the opportunity to visit the center and to meet with the children who were very eager to take part in all the activities set up by the center for its anniversary. She also took part in some of these activities, such as decorating cupcakes- she decorated hers with a starfish- and helping children making animals out of paper.

The aquarium’s logo is a shark and sharks is a huge part of the Kattegatcentret,  you can also have a dive in their Oceanarium and give the five shark species a high-five.

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© Kattegatcentret

For these two events, Princess Marie wore a new dress by Tara Jarmon. This dress has a clover print with puffy short sleeves and a keyhole neckline. She decided to bring some color to her outfit by wearing her orange/red Alexander McQueen jacket first worn in 2015 for an UNESCO meeting in Paris.

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© Tara Jarmon
mcqueen
©Lyst

She accessorized with her Jimmy Choo black suede ‘Romy’ pumps which she debuted last month and her Carlend Copenhagen clutch first worn last December.

jimmychoo

Carlend Copenhagen
©Carlend Copenhagen

 

We’ll next see Princess Marie on May 15 when she’ll attend an UNESCO meeting in Copenhagen.

Landsforeningen Autisme, Visits

Princess Marie attends SIKON Conference as Patron of the Danish Association for Autism

Today, Princess Marie was in Odense to attend the SIKON Conference hosted by the Danish Association for Autism.

The SIKON Conference is held over two days and celebrate its 30th anniversary this year. Princess Marie is Patron of the Danish Association for Autism since November 2011 and she attended the SIKON Conference in April 2015.

Those who take part in the SIKON Conference can attend presentations, participate in courses and share their knowledge about autism.

During today’s event, Princess Marie was on hands to give the Autism Prize before meeting with lecturers and participants and learning about the different stands. The Autism Prize 2018 went to Felix Munch and Ellen Vallentin for their important work on research into parents with autism.

She also had the opportunity to test a new rocking chair that is used to soothe autistic children as part of a new therapy.

Here is Princess Marie’s speech:

Congratulations on the anniversary!

The SIKON conference has been held 30 times. The first time was in Copenhagen in 1988. It was then when autism was a rare diagnosis and therefore the conference was also quite small, only approx. 5% of the participants present today. 

At that time, only a small group of parents and professionals had seen autism. Today we are many, more than 800 people.

Because we’ve gotten better to spot things that are hard to see!

An anniversary is always a good opportunity to correct the eyes of the years gone by. 
You can ask yourself some questions about,

  • Why you took the choices you took in your life, and you can reflect on whether you actually achieved what you had set for. 

Or if everything went according to plan, whether it was attained its goals or whether it was more coincidental. And what had you really done if you had chosen to do something completely different from what you did … would you have been somewhere else right now?

You can also choose to look at everything from above, looking at something other than yourself. Look at the community around, the life you live, and dive into some social issues and ask for example:

  • How was the quality of life for people with autism 30 years ago?
  • What was their biggest challenge then?
  • What have we been doing in the 30 years and how do they have it today?

One can look at their opportunities to develop their identity and ask:

  • Are autistic children part of our kindergartens and schools today?
  • Will autistic young people get in education and do they get work in our businesses? 
  • Do they earn money, and do they gain independence from others, or should we always care for them – and how do we do it in the best possible way?
  • Will they meet with the acceptance and recognition of other people in our society or are we trying to “file them a bit” so they are easier to fit?

Some time ago, I met Lasse at Novo Nordisk where he is employed by Project Opportunity. Lasse was employed as an operator in the production department, he did the job perfectly. It was quite accidentally discovered that Lasse had “hidden talents”, he could find visual errors in language patterns – Lasse suddenly became invaluable because he was ” seen “.

Because we see autism now. We recognize the behavior that characterizes autism, so the question must be whether we also see the talents of autistic people. Have we been better at finding their skills? 
Have we changed our attitudes and our view of diversity, we have become more open to diversity, and more tolerant?

We are, maybe …

But now we are going to look forward and SIKON has again, this year, gathered some highly skilled researchers, professors and speakers who will inform us and make us even more aware of our topic Autism!

I wish you a very good conference!

You can see a small part of her speech here and a short video of Marie handing the Autism Prize here.

Princess Marie wore a recycled outfit today! She chose to wear her Hugo Boss white printed dress. She first wore it while visiting the HC Andersen Children Hospital in 2017.

© debijenkorf.nl

She also carried her old Yves Saint Laurent black tote bag and she wore black pumps. I believe they are the Jimmy Choo ‘Romy’ suede pumps she debuted earlier this month.

© YSL
©Jimmy Choo

We’ll see Princess Marie tomorrow again when she’ll attend the spring concert of the Children Association.

Landsforeningen Autisme, Visits

Princess Marie attends ‘Meeting of Minds’ conference

Today, Princess Marie , as Patron of the National Association for Autism attended the ‘Meeting of Minds’ conference at the Bella Sky Center in Copenhagen.

The sixth edition of the Meeting of Minds conference was organized by the National Association for Autism as well as the University of South Denmark (SDU), Studio3 and Samradet. Marie also closely works with SDU on a number of topics.

© Meeting Of Minds

The topics for this year’s conference are “Participation”, “Identity” and “Self-Awareness”. Princess Marie attended a presentation by English researcher Laura Crane , who works at the Center of Research on Autism and Education (CRAE) in London, named : “Something’s got to change : mental health of autistic young adults”.

After the presentation, Princess Marie meet and had lunch with the six keynote speakers of the conference , including Laura Crane.

We have limited photos of this event but we can see that Princess Marie wore a new checked blazer that I suspect might be Zara and a new red top.

 She also wore her Christine Hvelplund and she carried the Yves Saint Laurent tote bag she debuted in Greenland earlier this year and her Jimmy Choo ‘Romy’ pumps.
© Christine Hvelplund
© YSL
© Jimmy Choo

We’ll next see Princess Marie next Wednesday as she’ll be in Paris to officially launch the Danish Christmas Months at the BHV Marais store.