"We just wanted to write to thank you so much for all of your help and support for our son. Without your skills, knowledge and experience we have no doubt that he would still be at home without work or purpose. It's only been a short time but already we have noticed a big difference in him. He is really quite chatty which we haven't seen for many years and his quirky sense of humour has returned! Your style of working has been to build a positive relationship with him and go at his pace and this has built his confidence. Just as importantly has been your connections with possible employers. This enabled you to find him the perfect job and to support him to get it which he wouldn't have done without you. He is now talking like a man with a future and we know he feels good that he is contributing to the family. Thanks again Karen your support has been invaluable."
Karen specialises in working with Young People between the ages of 16 – 30, specifically to manage educational or employment transitions, or support individuals and families pre and post diagnosis. Karen has an excellent track record of supporting her clients into appropriate and successful educational placements, apprenticeships and jobs.
Karen initially trained as a Psychodynamic Counsellor, achieving an advanced certificate in Counselling Skills and Theory, before starting her career in educational support in 2002. Karen is a fully accredited Mental Health mentor, a professional member of UMHAN and the National Autistic Society.
Karen has worked in many different settings supporting young people and adults with AS or an ASC, including delivering and running therapeutic support services at a Further Education college, Guidance management at a Sixth Form college, running Sussex wide Youth Work projects, Specialist Mentoring at a University and since 2009, as an independent ASC coach. Karen also set up, secured funding for, and ran the first Social Club specifically for young people with AS or an ASC in Sussex.
Karen has completed many professional training courses throughout her career including an NVQ 4 in Supporting Children, Young People and those who care for them and is able to draw on many different techniques, such as Motivational Interviewing and Brief Solution Based Therapy, to tailor her approach to individual need.
Karen has a full clinical diagnosis of AS, which affords her an intrinsic understanding of her clients and the barriers they often face, her sessions are solution focused and work towards agreed goals which are client led
The support I received from Karen was a massive help to both my confidence in finding employment and interviews. In particular, she significantly aided me in learning interview techniques and stress management in such conditions. Her help in my becoming employed in February this year cannot be underestimated.
Karen has been an invaluable independent support for our son who has a diagnosis of high functioning autism. Over the last year, she has tailored her support to help him identify and apply for jobs, and coached him in interview skills. He has now been offered a permanent part-time contract locally, which fits in beautifully with his part time distance learning. Karen has kept him motivated and positive, and helped build his confidence and self-esteem, as well as focusing on practical skills. She has been proactive in suggesting a reduction in support, though on this we are for once reluctant to take her advice!