Thank you Bristol Autism Support post it note

Who we are

Bristol Autism Support (BAS) is a registered charity providing information, support and training for parents and carers of autistic children in BS postcodes. We believe the need for our support is self-defining. Parents and carers do not need a diagnosis for their child in order to access our services.

What we do

  • BAS is a membership organisation; most of our services are available only to our members. This enables us to deliver a high quality, tailored services. Membership is free and comes with a wide variety of benefits. Click here to learn more and become a member.
  • We create a wide range of opportunities for parents and carers of children with autism to connect with each other. Our strong community helps give parents and carers the knowledge needed to help them better support the children they look after. Click here to learn about our current service offering
  • We provide clear, relevant information about autism to parents and carers. By doing so, we hope to improve the futures and outcomes of autistic children. We use this website, our Facebook page and email to signpost information about local and national services and support. As much as possible, we share the voices of autistic adults because we know they are best placed to teach us about our children.
  • We provide volunteering and work experience opportunities that enable parents, carers and autistic young people to gain skills and improve confidence.

Due to the high volume of requests, we can no longer provide free advice about ‘autism friendly’ events. We would be happy to come to your venue to discuss this for a fee of £100 for a one-hour consultation, payable in advance.

Our structure

BAS is a registered charity, number 1186287. We exist to serve the local autism family community. As a registered charity, our annual accounts are a matter of public record and can be viewed via the Charity Commission website

Our Team

We have a core team of decision makers that runs the organisation:

Kate Laine-Toner

Kate Laine-Toner
Founder
Kate set up Bristol Autism Support in June of 2012 when she could not find the support she needed to help her daughter, who was diagnosed at the age of two. “I remember when I first realised my daughter may be autistic. I was afraid, lonely and isolated. I never want any parent to experience this, and that is why I do what I do.” Kate is autistic and has ADHD, and shares her experiences of not just parenting an autistic child but being a neurodiverse individual. Kate left the charity in June of 2022 but our trustees, management team and volunteers carry on her legacy.

Anna Hall

Anna Hall
Trustee
Anna has a background in advice service delivery, business development and commissioning having worked for the Citizens Advice service for many years and now for the Money and Pensions Service. She is mum to an autistic stepdaughter and autistic son (as well as a neurotypical daughter) and used BAS’ services initially when there seemed nowhere to turn after their diagnosis. Anna is passionate about ensuring that parents are supported in their journey as they parent an autistic child and raising awareness of neurodiversity in the workplace.

Caroline Clark trustee

Caroline Clark
Trustee
Caroline is an engineer by background and has worked across many sectors including academia, consulting, research and development, and innovation funding. Currently the co-founder and operations director of a Bristol-based quantum tech startup, she has a particular interest in how we inspire, develop and educate young people. As the parent of an autistic teenager, she is committed to supporting BAS in its mission to support parents and carers and to grow as an organisation.

Jane Walton

Jane Walton
Secretary

Jane is a firm believer that everyone should have the opportunity to sing to the best of their ability and reap the physical and mental benefits. She is a music teacher for several local schools and has a number of private pupils. She has also conducted several local choirs. Jane has been a member of BAS from its early days and has benefitted from support and advice, as well as the social activities for children and adults on numerous occasions.

Jason Thorne

Jason Thorne
Chair

Jason has practical experience of autism, one of his two daughters was diagnosed in February 2019. Jason feels that his 27 years experience of working in Local Government, qualifications in Business/Management and his involvement in local voluntary projects will help BAS develop. Jason became a Trustee after attending BAS’ What Do I Do Now? course, where he experienced first hand the vital work BAS carries out to support parents/carers and their children.

Jo Stokes trustee

Jo Stokes
Treasurer
Jo has worked in the local voluntary sector for the past 20 years, focusing mainly on older adults and adults with disabilities. She has lived in the city since marrying a Bristolian and now has two gorgeous boys, one of who has a diagnosis of autism. Jo’s ideal day is walking the dog and digging in the garden.

Laura Collins

Laura Collins
Trustee

Laura brings to BAS her a wealth of experience in community work, outreach, event management, and project management. Laura has a keen interest in supporting the local autism family community, and has first-hand experience of caring for young family members with autism and is passionate about giving parents and carers the knowledge needed to help them better support the children they look after.

Tammi Clark BAS Trustee

Tammi Clark
Trustee
Tammi’s daughter was diagnosed in 2020 after being on a ‘watch and wait’ list for six years.  She has previously volunteered for the premature baby charity Bliss as her daughter was born at 26 weeks.  Due to this she is keenly interested in links between prematurity and ASD for some children. She became a Trustee after attending a six week support group for parents of ASD girls – which she found invaluable! She has spent over 25 years working in Business Analysis in the global corporate world specialising in implementing new systems and processes. 

We also have an administrative team made up of volunteers and paid staff:

Christina Morgan

Christina Morgan
Bookkeeper
Christina is our volunteer bookkeeper, having worked previously in finance and accounting for over 20 years. She also provides parent support for BAS and is a co-facilitator for our courses. Christina has a son who was diagnosed with autism in 2015. She is committed to supporting BAS and the work we do in supporting autistic children. 

Jade Page

Jade Page
Operations Manager

Jade wears many hats within BAS. She manages the operational side of things, provides parent support and is one of our lead trainers. She also runs The Autism Page website and is a full time mum to two autistic boys. Before having kids Jade worked in Strategy and Information and has a passion for sharing information. She is calm, level-headed and has a wealth of knowledge to share with parents and carers of children with autism.

 

Lizzie Witchard
Helpline Co-ordinator and Volunteer Mentor

Lizzie has been a part of BAS for nearly 10 years. She wears many hats within the organisation, offering parent support, running in-person groups and mentoring our volunteers. She co-ordinates our helpline as well. Lizzie is the mother of a teenage autistic daughter and is studying to be a counsellor. 

 

Loren Snow autistic speaker and trainer

Loren Snow
Autistic Trainer and Facilitator
Loren facilitates our BAS Dads group as well as various support groups. They are the creator of Autism Academy, a website and YouTube channel filled with information about autism. Loren is autistic and has ADHD. They have spent the past decade studying health, psychology, relationships, identity and just about everything to do with why we humans think and act the way we do.

Louise Mills

Louise Mills
Policy & Procedures Manager 
Louise first came to BAS support meetings when her eldest daughter was diagnosed with ASD in 2018 after a 6 year long fight for support. Her daughter has since also been diagnosed with ADHD and her son received a diagnosis of autism during the coronavirus lockdown in early 2020. Louise undertakes regular courses to enhance her knowledge of Autism, ADHD and SEN support which will benefit the wider BAS community.

 

Mollie Pittaway
Social Media Assistant

Mollie is our Social Media Assistant, managing our social media platforms and engaging our community of followers. She is a freelance copywriter, content creator and autistic advocate after discovering she is autistic when she was 21 in her second year of university. Mollie is keen to promote awareness of autism in girls and acceptance of neurodiversity, particularly in the workplace. 

 

Pam Pluck

Pam Pluck
Parent Support Volunteer Manager
‘I was previously a parent volunteer for the PDA Society. I have two children aged 10 and 5; my 10 year old daughter was recently diagnosed with autism. I really enjoy being able to facilitate peer support so that parents can benefit from others’ similar experiences and knowledge, and that volunteers further along in their journey can offer their support and share their experiences.’

 

Sue Francomb

Sue Francomb
Membership Manager

Sue has two daughters, the eldest of whom was diagnosed autistic just before her third birthday. She is passionate about raising awareness and acceptance of autism and helping other parents of children on the spectrum. Sue manages the onboarding of our new members and makes sure they are well looked after. 

 

More about us:

What we’re not

Bristol Autism Support is an independent, registered charity. We are not affiliated with any other charities or organisations. We are not:

Bristol Autism Spectrum Service (BASS). BASS looks after autistic adults. Their phone number is 01275 796 200. Their email address is awp.bass@nhs.net.

Bristol Autism Team Education Hub, which is part of Bristol City Council. Click here to learn more about this team.

Bristol Autism Project, which provides activities for children diagnosed with autism. This is run by FACE Filton. Click here to visit their website

We are also not affiliated in any way with The National Autistic Society.

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