Learning Disability and Autism Information Hub

Autism services and support in Surrey

On this page you can find a list of autism services and activities in Surrey.

Whether or not you are assessed as eligible for Adult Social Care services, you may still be able to get help from the following groups.

Some of these are autism specialists, and some are suitable for anyone. Some need to be paid for.


Information on community support

Information on community support for people with autism is frequently updated on Surrey Information Point.

EmployAbility

For people eligible for Social Care funding, EmployAbility offers support to find a job and stay in employment. This includes support and training for employers, and Supported Internships.

It also works with some schools and colleges to support autistic young people to find work experience placements and to access employment schemes like Future Choices.

It can help people not eligible for a funded Social Care service to access specific employment schemes, and support people who can get Access to Work funding, or who self-fund.

Email: EmployAbility@surreychoices.com
Telephone: 01483 806806

Job Centre Plus

Job Centre Plus provides employment advice, and information on employment-related benefits and Access To Work grants.

Access to Work grants

Access to Work grants may help to pay for practical support so that you can start work, stay in work, or start your own business.

If you get Access to Work funding, there are autism specialist providers you could use, such as Employability, The National Autistic Society (NAS) Workplace Support Programme, and AS Mentoring.

Employment Skills – National Autistic Society, Godalming

The Monday and Thursday afternoon sessions aim to provide the knowledge to understand all the steps required in getting a job. These include workplace relationships, interview skills, CV writing, job searching and coping strategies when difficulties arise in the workplace.

Places at the sessions can be paid for via Adult Social Care funding if the person is eligible, or can be self-funded.

Contact Gemma Fry for more information:

Telephone: 01483 521747
Email: gemma.fry@nas.org.uk

Advocacy

Surrey Disabled People's Partnership (SDPP)

Advocacy means taking action to help people say what they want, secure their rights, represent their interests, and get services they need.

Advocacy in Surrey is a partnership of independent organisations, SDPP and Matrix, who provide a range of statutory and preventative advocacy support including Care Act advocacy and independent mental health advocacy.

Advocacy in Surrey is for people who face difficulties in being involved, having their voice heard, and have no other independent person to help them do so.

Telephone: 0800 335 7330
Text/SMS: 07561392818
Email: info@advocacyinsurrey.org.uk

The National Autistic Society Assist and Aspire services

Assist - (Autism Signposting, Support & Information Services Team)

The Assist Service is for adults who either have an autism diagnosis or are seeking one. The service is for people who do not receive Adult Social Care support. The Assist team offer one-to-one support sessions, usually once a month.

Common issues people discuss include understanding autism, employment, college/university, anxiety, routines, sensory difficulties, relationships, and isolation.

Face to face sessions take place in Godalming (Saturdays and Thursdays), Reigate (Tuesdays), Aldershot (Saturdays) and Farnborough (Mondays).

Sessions can also be offered over the telephone or via skype.

Telephone: 01483 521743
Email: assist.surrey@nas.org.uk

Aspire social groups and support

Contact details the same as the Assist service (above).

Aspire Guildford Support Group

This service is for adults aged 25+. The support group meeting is on the first Thursday of the month from 6.30pm to 9pm. Members also organise a pub social meet up on the fourth Thursday evening of every month.

Guildford Young Adults Group

This service is for young adults who are 18 to 25 years old. The group meets fortnightly on a Wednesday from 7.00 – 9.00 pm. There is a rotating programme of discussion meetings, games evenings and pub meetings.

Redhill Young Adults Group

This service is for young adults aged 18+. Most members are in their 20's and some a little older. The group meets fortnightly on a Wednesday from 7.00 – 9.00 pm. There is a rotating programme of discussion/games meetings, quizzes, and activities such as comedy nights and bowling.

Godalming Women's Support Group

This service is for adult autistic women of all ages. The group meets once a month on a Saturday afternoon to discuss relevant topics and provide peer support.

Support / social groups

Oxted

Occasional meals, cinema, pub visits organised. Run by volunteers.

Contact Elaine Holloway:

Telephone: 07521 409124
Email: s.holloway541@gmail.com

The National Autistic Society (NAS) Surrey Branch

NAS Surrey Branch

The NAS Surrey Branch is a parent-run voluntary support organisation, which can provide information and peer support for families.

This is separate from the NAS services described on the previous page.

Telephone: 07423 435413
Email: nassurreybranch@nas.org.uk

Advice and information

Benefits advice

Information and advice on benefits is available from your local Citizens Advice organisation.

JobCentrePlus also advises on benefits and your local council can give you information and advice if it relates to Housing Benefit or Universal Credit.

Autism Diagnostic Assessment

The Surrey Neurodevelopmental Service

The Surrey Neurodevelopmental Service is run by Surrey and Borders Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. The Autism Act 2009 gave adults the right to a diagnostic assessment should their GP refer them.

You must ask your GP to refer you to the Neurodevelopmental Service for an assessment.

There is a waiting list for a diagnostic assessment. When it is your turn to be seen by the service you will be invited to a meeting with an autism specialist.

If you are diagnosed, you will be sent a letter that confirms your diagnosis. This is usually a five- or six-page letter.

Community Connections Services

Community Connections Services supports people who have mental health difficulties, offering emotional and wellbeing support through local support groups, activities, and courses. Each local area has a lead provider explained below.

Epsom & Ewell, Mole Valley, Elmbridge East and Banstead:

Mary Frances Trust is a mental health and emotional wellbeing charity for adults aged 16+ in Surrey.

Telephone: 01372 375400
Email: info@maryfrancestrust.org.uk
Text: 07929 0246722

Spelthorne, Runnymede, Woking, Elmbridge West, Guildford, Surrey Heath and Waverley:

The Welcome Project by Catalyst offers a range of services within the community to help people with their mental health and wellbeing.

Telephone: 014843 590150
Email: welcomeproject@catalystsupport.org.uk
Text: 07909 631623

Reigate, Redhill, Tandridge

Richmond Fellowship is a national mental health charity.

Telephone: 01737 771058
Email: redhillcc@richmondfellowship.org.uk
Text: 07867 448947

Counselling and mental health services

Contact your GP

Your GP can support you with your mental health and is able to refer you to services that can help with issues like anxiety and depression.

This includes support from GPimhs to help you find and link into other sources of support in the community.

Transforming community mental health services in Surrey Heartlands (YouTube)

The Surrey Virtual Wellbeing Hub

Surrey Virtual Wellbeing Hub lists activities, events, and support services for mental health.

The Surrey Autism Partnership Board

Autism factsheets

There are Autism factsheets and information from the Autism Partnership Board available to download.

The Autism Partnership Board works to implement the National Autism Strategy in Surrey.

Education and Leisure

Mainstream adult education and leisure facilities should make reasonable adjustments for people with autism and may have staff with some specialist training in how to support people with autism.

Surrey County Council Adult Learning

Find adult learning courses at different centres in Surrey.

Leisure services

Visit Surrey has information about things to do and leisure services available in Surrey.

Social Care Funded Services

The rules for eligibility for funded Adult Social Care services changed in April 2015.

There is a useful document explaining the changes on the Social Care Institute for Excellence website.

These criteria are a framework to look at an individual's needs and how they affect the person's wellbeing.

The criteria include difficulties with developing and maintaining personal relationships, and access to work, training, education, or volunteering.

Autism Trained Staff

If you let Surrey County Council know that you have autism, you can ask for the staff member carrying out the assessment to have had autism training, and they will try to ensure that this happens.

Surrey County Council Adult Social Care

You can get in touch with Surrey County Council's contact centre to arrange for someone to carry out an eligibility assessment.

If you are assessed as eligible, you can receive services funded by Surrey County Council to meet your assessed needs.

Phone: 0300 200 1005 (8am to 6pm Monday to Friday)

The Care Act Statutory Guidance says they must do this.

Surrey County Council Autism Lead

Thomas Moore is Surrey County Council Adult Social Care's Commissioning Lead for Autism.

Send an email to the Learning Disability and Autism Team addressed to Tom and he will respond.

Email: ldcommunications@surreycc.gov.uk