Mother's 'long fight' to get the support son needs

14th October 2005 at 01:00
Korame Edumijeke, an eight-year-old from Greenwich, south London, has autism spectrum disorder.

His mother Rose said: "He did not have any speech until he was almost six and was in nappies until he was five-and-a-half. But he has got better and is talking but we still face many challenges.

"He can tell you what he wants and because he talks that reduces problems of frustration, which can make him hyper. But because he can talk he wants everything and his understanding is limited."

Korame is at Millennium primary, a mainstream school with an autistic unit, but Mrs Edumijeke said: "He needs to be prompted by adults to mix with ordinary kids and is more comfortable to be at home with his sister."

She says she has had "one long fight" since Korame was diagnosed aged two:

"In Greenwich you have to fight for everything," she said.

Mrs Edumijeke attends meetings run by the National Autistic Society, which is organising a series of conferences for parents of black and minority ethnic (BME) pupils diagnosed with autism.

The conferences in Manchester, Bradford, Birmingham and Cardiff will centre on ways to support BME familes affected by autism.

Many experts and parents are beginning to question why there is an increasing perception that a disproportionate number of children from these groups are being diagnosed with the disorder.

For details about the BME conferences contact Prithvi Perepa on 020 7923 5703

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