1-day Training for Professionals

A very successful training day, ‘Introduction to Conditions on the Autism Spectrum‘, was presented by our Clinical Director Ben Truter (Clinical Psychologist) in Hermanus on 14 September 2018. The event was attended by various professionals from the fields of Psychiatry, Paediatrics, Psychology, OT and SLT, as well as a few parents. This was a wonderful opportunity for all to learn and share experiences among one another. Many thanks to Dr Michelle van Niekerk from Hermanus, whose initiative and support helped make this day possible!

Ben also presented this training to a group of health professionals, educators and students on 18 August 2018 at Stellenbosch University’s Ukwanda Rural Clinical school in Worcester.

The next opportunity to attend this 1-day training will be on 02 November in Paarl/Klapmuts.

6 CPD points (General CEUs, Level 1) have been approved for this event.

For more information, contact training@neurodiversitycentre.co.za

30th Aug & 01 Sept 2018: DISCO Training 

  Clinical Psychologist Ben Truter, Neurodiversity Centre’s Clinical Director, is the first clinician in Africa to have registered as a Licensed DISCO Trainer with the Lorna Wing Centre (NAS), UK.  He has teamed up with Consultant Psychiatrist Dr Wendy Vogel (Head of Division: Child & Adolescent Psychiatry and Senior Lecturer at UCT) to deliver training to local professionals working with conditions on the Autism Spectrum, in the use of this assessment framework.

Part I of this course took place on 30 Aug & 01 Sept 2018, at Feathers Boutique Guest House in Durbanville. We look forward to our 10 very experienced and knowledgeable delegates reconvening for Part II on 26 & 27 October 2018.

18 & 19 May 2018:  Facilitator Training 

Another successful Facilitator Training course was presented in Durbanville on 18 & 19 May by two Neurodiversity Centre team members, Bianca Kuffner (Educational Psychologist) and Juazel de Villiers (Clinical Psychologist). This two-day training focuses on equipping facilitators that work on a 1:1 basis with learners on the Autism Spectrum, with the basic knowledge and skills required to do so.  Attended by 14 trainees, the feedback from this event was extremely positive, and we are ready to start organising the next Facilitator Training as soon as possible!

Some of the comments from attendees:

  • “All the practical ideas were fantastic- motivating me to try new things. Thank you for your time, enthusiasm and sharing your knowledge. I feel re-enthused”
  • “The discussion times and being able to discuss different barriers and solutions was incredibly helpful”
  • “Thank you for offering a very valuable course at a reasonable price and keeping the group smaller to allow for interactive format. The question and answers and brainstorming plus your experience in the field helped me to give more context to my limited knowledge. Hearing the side of one of the facilitators who himself is an Aspie, was very valuable”
  • “Clear and well presented”

Contact training@neurodiversitycentre.co.za to enquire and/or express your interest.


16 March 2018: Dr Judith Gould delivers ASD presentation at Joint Academic Lecture, Valkenberg Hospital

Dr Judith Gould, international expert and authority on Autism Spectrum Disorders, addressed a group of multi-disciplinary professionals from the three main academic hospitals around Cape Town, on Friday 16 March at a Joint Academic Lecture Meeting at Valkenberg Hospital.  She spoke on the topic of Women and Girls on the Autism Spectrum, sharing her experience of over 40 years of working in this field. Dr Gould was one of the early pioneers in the field of Autism, having worked alongside the late Lorna Wing, who introduced the work of Austrian peadiatrician Hans Asperger to English-speaking countries in the early 1980’s. Dr Gould is currently based at the National Autistic Society’s Lorna Wing Centre in Bromley, UK. 

The Joint Academic Lectures occur about 3 times per year and are attended by Psychiatrists, Psychologists, Clinical Social Workers, Occuptational Therapists, Clinical Nurses as well as various trainees from the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Teams at Red Cross, Tygerberg and Lentegeur Hospitals. Dr Gould’s talk was received with great interest and enthusiastiasm by this group, with many staying afterwards to speak to her some more! This was indeed a unique opportunity for professionals to tap into Dr Gould’s extensive insight and knowledge.  


14-15 March:  Part II of DISCO training completed 

The group of 14 professionals who were part of the first ever DISCO training on the African continent, completed the second leg of this specialist diagnostic framework on 14 and 15 March 2018.  This follows on Part I of this training which took place on 05 and 06 Dec 2018.  We were once again extremely honoured to host Dr Judith Gould and her team of trainers from the Lorna Wing Centre, Dr Sue Sheppard and Mary Webb, and to have access to their incredible expertise. The professionals who received this training, included all the psychologists from the Neurodiversity team, as well as psychologists and peadiatricians from other parts of South Africa, and even as far afield as Kenya! 

The training allows clinicians to become accredited users of the DISCO (Diagnostic Interview for Social Communication Disorders), which is considered one of the gold standard assessment instruments for the diagnosis of conditions on the Autism Sectrum. It not only informs a clear diagnosis, but also already provides guidelines for intervention through the diagnostic process, and empowers parents/families in truly understanding the diagnosis.  


First Group of Learners Start ‘Bridges in Social Understanding’ Programme

We are delighted to announce that our first group of learners have commenced the ‘Bridges’ Curriculum on 01 March 2018.  They will now be able to access the programme in a paced manner, with weekly online-based sessions, for the duration of one year. We are very excited to see how these young pioneers will benefit from this evidence-based training.

Further intakes will be aligned with the school terms, so that our next group of learners will be able to start at the onset of the 2nd term, on Wednesday 11 April 2018

Registration and payment for this ‘batch’ of learners will close on Friday 06 April 2018.

Please contact training@neurodiversitycentre.co.za for more information.


Bridges in Social Understanding 

Neurodiversity Centre hosted very successful training for professionals in the use of the Bridges in Social Understanding social skills curriculum on 30-31 January 2018. This was attended by 31 professionals, and was followed by a training day for parents on 02 February 2018, attended by 15 parents. The response was overwhelmingly positive, and we are now ready for our clients to start using this online social skills programme. The programme is available at R2750 per child per year (the year can run across two calendar years, if it is started halfway though one year). Though ideally delivered in groups by a teacher or professional, it can also be conducted at home by a parent, with the support of an appropriate professional (such as the child’s Psychologist). 

For more information, contact us at training@neurodiversitycentre.co.za or have a look at the links below:

Bridges Curriculum Info -Parents

Bridges Curriculum Info-Professionals




Women and Girls on the Autism Spectrum

We have been extremely honoured to host one of the top international experts in the field of Autism, Dr Judith Gould, for professional training here in the Western Cape in December 2017. She and her team from the Lorna Wing Institute (National Autistic Society) in London presented the first part of specialised diagnostic training to professionals in December, and will return in March 2018 for the second leg.

During her December visit, Dr Gould presented an extremely relevant and enlightening talk to the general public on the topic “Women and Girls on the Autism Spectrum“. Despite it having been one of the hottest days this summer, over 120 people filled up Bridge House Preparatory Hall in Franschoek on 07 December for this rare oportunity to listen to one of the leaders in the field of Autsim Spectrum Disorders. And they were not disappointed! What an honour to have someone of Dr Gould’s caliber share their expertise with us. We look forward very much to her and her team returning in March.



We also offer regular training events for professionals, teachers and facilitators – watch this space!