Big Update! The OT show at the NEC
On the 23rd-24th November fidgetsandstims will be at the Occupational Therapy Show at the NEC in Birmingham. I will be featuring many new products and lots of old favourites. All my products are neurodiversity affirming, based on my lived experience and experience of working in a secondary school.
I started the fidgetsandstims Instagram project some time after a huge health scare in early 2022. I started to share my experience as an autistic woman and I got the pleasure of connecting with many people who shared the same joys and struggles as me. From there the online shop grew and I started getting in touch with schools and local organisations to share my passion for alternative forms of communication. I believe that all forms of communication from AAC systems, to communication cards, to actions and signing are valid and beautiful. I look forward to a more accessible world where all people feel heard and seen, even if they struggle to communicate in more ‘traditional’ ways such as speech.
PECS cards (Picture Exchange Communication Systems) have existed for some time but are often expensive, labour-intensive to produce and often are aimed at younger children. The PECS I produce are varied by age range from KS1-friendly to KS4-adult friendly. My PECS are affordable, have customization options available and are grouped by theme for ease of use. Some packs can be used by individuals to assist their daily life whereas other packs can be used with other professionals or carers to help young people or adults regulate themselves. These packs can be used by neurodivergent individuals. However their application can be even broader to those with MS, those who have suffered strokes or those who have any number of reasons why speech may be physically difficult for them.
I am so excited to share what I have made and talk with other people who are just as excited about alternative forms of communication as I am at the Occupational Therapy Show at the NEC, Birmingham!