18th December 2017
PEAT Celebrates 20 Years!
Belfastâ€™s Lord Mayor Councillor Nuala McAllister joined autism charity P.E.A.T (Parentsâ€™ Education as Autism Therapists) and the families they support at their annual Christmas Party to celebrate 20 years of providing autism support, assistance, intervention and training to parents and professionals across Northern Ireland.
P.E.A.T was founded in December 1997 by a determined group of parents frustrated at the lack of support and services provided by the government with the assistance of Ulster University Professor Mickey Keenan.Â Applying the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) with families and examining the causes and consequences of behaviour, they offer evidence-based support in homes and school settings.Â Over the last two decades, P.E.A.T has given families the tools to develop, promote and sustain life skills to empower all our children towards the goal of independence.Â
Despite the absence of government funding, the P.E.A.T charity has helped numerous families, bridging the gap in autism services throughout all communities in Northern Ireland, encouraging inclusivity for all children and young people on the Autism spectrum.Â
â€œSince our sonâ€™s diagnosis we contacted various voluntary organisations who help with autism. PEAT is the only organisation thatÂ offers a programme whichÂ provides professional expertise on a one to one basis thatâ€™s customised to help his specific needs.â€ (Parent of a child with autism)
Belfast Lord Mayor Councillor Nuala McAllister said: â€œItâ€™s been an absolute pleasure to meet members of PEAT and the families and children they support today as the organisation celebrates its 20th anniversary.Â PEAT is providing invaluable services in empowering children to reach their full potential and providing support for their families. I send them best wishes for a very happy Christmas, and every success for the next stage of their journey.â€
The charity wishes to thank all those who have supported them over the years and who continue to support them.Â â€œWe thank the Lord Mayor for celebrating this very special anniversary with us and for taking the opportunity to meet with our children and see how P.E.A.T has impacted on their lives.â€ said Stephen Gallagher, the charityâ€™s chair.