Who Are We?

The Autism Advice Service provides support, advice and guidance to individuals, families and professionals. The team have extensive knowledge of local services, offering free information and can signpost to other support agencies. 

Our Autism Advisors provide confidential support, a listening ear and information to individuals, families and professionals living in Essex Suffolk and Norfolk.

Please note; we are limited in the advice we can provide to individuals and their families who do not have a diagnosis.

The team can provide telephone, email and written information guidance on:

  • Educational matters, including education, health and care plans
  • Strategies and communication
  • Seeking a diagnosis
  • Preparing for meetings with professionals, for example, schools or Local Authority
  • Putting forward your views both verbally and in writing
  • What to include when writing letters and reports or filling out a form.
  • Obtaining a free Autism Alert Card
  • Applying for benefits and filling in forms for example, Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and Personal Independence Payment (PIP).
  • Advice clinics
  • Practical advice

The Autism Advice Service is funded by donations and relies entirely on fundraising and voluntary income to maintain and expand its services.

Due to the high volume of referrals the team receive there can often be a waiting list. Please be ensured a member of the team will contact you as soon as they can.

If you would like to get in contact, please click here.

Advice Line: 0300 1233 122. Open 9.30am – 3pm Monday - Friday

In a crisis contact:

  • The Samaritans - 116123
  • Essex Social Care (out of hours) Adults 0300 123 0778 Children 0845 606 1212
  • Suffolk Social Care 24 hours 0808 800 4005
  • Norfolk Social Care 0344 800 8020
  • Police – 101 or 999
  • Visit your local A&E Department

Working with You

We understand the challenges and frustrations that some people can face and we are here to help.

All Autism Anglia staff are committed to working with you in a professional and courteous manner and have the right to work in a safe and supportive environment.

We, therefore, ask you to behave in a polite, kind and respectful manner in return.

The Team

Jo Keys, Head of Autism Advice Service

Jo has worked for Autism Anglia since 2006. In that time she has seen the organisation grow from a local charity to the regional charity it is today.

Lindsey Heard, Senior Autism Advisor

Lindsey had worked for Autism Anglia since 2004 as an Autism Advisor based in Norfolk and has developed good relationships with many professionals and families along the way which is invaluable when supporting families.

Annie Sands, Welfare Rights Advisor

Annie started working for Autism Anglia in 2012, originally covering Suffolk. Annie has over 20 years’ experience in welfare rights and represents at benefit tribunals.

Jemma Bradford, Autism Advisor

Jemma began working with Autism Anglia in 2014 as a student social worker and began as an Autism Advisor in 2015. Jemma has developed her knowledge base which has broadened around many subjects in relation to Autism.

Helen Leckie, Autism Advisor

Helen has worked for Autism Anglia since 2007. Helen has seen our service grow from strength to strength as has Autism Anglia. She has learnt much throughout the years that allows her to support individuals and families.

Courtenay Panton, Autism Advice Enquiries Coordinator

Courtenay has many years of personal experience with autism and began working the Autism Advice in 2015 when the service reopened. Being able to provide a listening ear and a genuine understanding and support for people is really rewarding for her.