9 year old boy diagnosed with ASD
Our son Darragh started level 1 with Michael in February 2018. Before he started the programme, Darragh suffered with very bad anxiety, had lots of meltdowns, was terrified of flies & bees and loud noises. In the first few weeks we noticed little changes in Darragh. He became less anxious about things and was able to self regulate himself if he got upset. He stopped trying to run out of the classroom and his teacher & SNA’s noticed he was a lot calmer in himself. When the summer came he became less scared of flies & bees and the kids screaming outside, he could tolerate the noise better. He is wearing his ear defenders less too. Darragh has started level 2 since November and is getting on really well. We’ve noticed more words and putting them into sentences which is fantastic. We are so happy and impressed with the programme. Thank u Micheal.
Mum Aideen, Cork
9 year old boy diagnosed with ASD
We started the ConfidentCalmKids programme in September 2017 and did it every week for 14 weeks. We noticed a difference from the first week. Week on week the difference was unbelievable. Our son eats, sleeps and behaves so much better. It has changed our lives. We would highly recommend the ConfidentCalmKids programme to any parents who has a child with ASD/ADHD. We have now started on level 2 of the ConfidentCalmKids programme.
Mum Kerrie, Mallow, Cork
6 year old boy diagnosed with ASD
My son Fawaz was diagnosed with ASD, with low communication, couldn’t construct a statement, no eye contact, he couldn’t express his feelings or ask for what he wants. We can tell what he likes or not, he would throw his words at us and we would have to arrange them like a jigsaw. He also struggles with frustration and stress, anything that moved around the house without telling him, would affect him. We would have to tell him things and give him time to process the words.
Ever since he started the ConfidentCalmKids programme, he has been joining his words more and making conversation, he gives me feedback from school, which he never did before the programme. He is playing more with his bother, while before he would play on his own. His lifestyle has improved and I am delighted about his progress.
I am super delighted with the outcome from level 1 of the ConfindentCalmKids programme, I can’t wait to start level 2 of the programme with him. I am so happy with the outcome, I am going to start Fawaz’s younger brother on the programme also.
Michael is very professional about handling and communicating with kids, friendly and mindful. I definitely recommend this programme to other parents.
Mum Tinuola, Glanmire, Cork
6 year old boy diagnosed with ASD
I would highly recommend the ConfidentCalmKids Autism intervention programme. My son James is 6 and we heard about the programme through a friend. From the 1st week we started to notice changes in James and his behaviour. As he progressed through the programme, he became more calm within himself. His speech became more fluent and his understanding and reasoning grew week by week. School and clubs, etc started to notice the positive changes in James, so we are delighted.
James has become more confident in social situations and meltdowns etc, have lessened. All in all, James is more relaxed and content in himself. The highlight of James weeks is heading down to Ladysbridge for his brain training as he calls it. We were so impressed with Michael and the programme, and the benefits James has achieved from level 1 of the programme, we are now on level 2 of the programme with Michael.
Mum Lisa, Cork
11 year old boy diagnosed with ASD, Sensory Processing Disorder, Auditory Processing Disorder and Anxiety
My son recently completed the ConfidentCalmKids programme level 1, with Michael. I was delighted with the results and I would definitely recommend the programme to other parents. Joey looked forward to his weekly sessions and was very comfortable and relaxed with Michael.
The main changes that I noticed:
- Leaving the house is a lot easier
- Joey can go to shops and knows what he wants to buy
- He is chatting alot more and having conversations
- Alot more understanding of situations and accepting of them
- My wall planners are gone, I still have to plan ahead and make sure he knows what is happening everyday, but he doesn’t need the planners anymore
- He is listening more in school and remembering what the teacher said
- Getting along better socially with his friends and making more of an effort
- Less time spent on Xbox
- I have play dates organised for everday over the mid term, this would not have been possible 12 months ago
- He is planning ahead organising go-karting with his friends in a few weeks, he would never have planned anything or asked for a trip out before
- Little bit more confident in himself
- He can see when other children are being mean to him, before I would have had to tell him
- Playing a bit more sport with school
Mum Rose, Douglas, Cork
11 year old boy diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Here are some of the changes I’ve seen since commencing the programme.
Its like he is awakening …he’s very grounded and calm 99% of the time. Stimming is WAY down , maybe once/twice a day, some days nothing. His voice has become louder and he has started shouting.
Some new phrases ..”mammy ready ..quick”, “I’m full”, “Cut the tag off”, “John is outside”.
He called me during the night and woke me .”..Mammy..hug me”, he has never done that before.
When given a choice of what to watch on T.V rather than choosing one of them he is asking for something totally different (obviously what he really wants to watch). The S&L Therapist said his cognition has taken a huge leap forward in past 6 weeks and she is genuinely delighted with his progress since when started with her in early May.
- He is answering her in 3-4 word sentence replies.
- Pronunciation has improved.
- He will always answer you now when you ask him a question.
- Echolalia has decreased.
- Eye contact has improved.
- He is checking to see if I’m still in house.
- He is coming in to us to tell us that he is going outside – he is actually saying ” going outside now ,,see ya!”.
- He has become more assertive – standing his own ground with his brother/cousins.
- Is territorial over his toys etc.
- He is playing with toys that have been in his playroom for years – its as if he has only seen them now for the first time.
- He is no longer interested in watching just Kinder Egg when he has screen time … he’s watching Max & Ruby, Roary The Racing Car, Tractor Tom and Tractor Ted .
- We bought him the DVD’s of them and now he will put one on in his playroom and lie on the couch there and actually watch an episode rather than just switching them after a couple of seconds.
- He is referencing to other characters in Thomas The Tank along with Thomas e.g Percy
- His writing has improved , along with his reading.
- He’s receptive language has increased.
- I told him the code to my phone ONCE ..now he remembers it and calls out the number and opens it himself.
- He is writing on his blackboard independently …e.g I asked him What day is today?..he wrote unprompted “Today is Wednesday” across the board .
- He is spelling /writing words unprompted.
- Sitting for longer periods – 2.5 hours without a sensory break.
- His summer tutor feels there is a huge change in him academically.
- He is cleaning his own glasses when they are dirty – before he would have just worn them dirty , like he didn’t notice.
- He is dressing himself,
- When his swing was wet , he went inside , got a towel , brought it out and dried the swing …before he would have sat on it wet.
- He is more interactive with his brother and his friends , he wants to be upstairs with them.
- He is playing chase with his cousins and is “minding” his little sister when she was walking up the slide (she’s 3).
- He’s waiting his turn without whining about it .’
- If he wants something I’m using e.g my phone , he will come up to me, rub my face and give me a hug, smile at me and then ask me for the phone !!
Mum Val, Cork
20 year old girl with Down Syndrome and diagnosed with bi-polar who has completed the Changinglives Programme – level 1
Before Laura started the programme she was diagnosed with bipolar and had also suffered with anxiety, especially if we were out and about, and we were in a situation where there was too much going on or a place was fairly busy.This in turn would lead to her having a bad meltdown, where she would scream and roar and sometimes lash out at us. Laura used never be like this, and we were never used to her behaving in this way, which made it all the more upsetting for us. It made life difficult as we did not know when she might kick off. Sometimes it might be for no apparent reason at all. Meals times were another issue, where she would eat her meals very aggressively and nearly choke and again this would lead to another screaming session and lashing out which I dreaded. We even avoided going to restaurants as I used get too stressed and anxious myself about it..
Since Laura started the ChangingLives program, life has become a lot better. Her anxiety has improved greatly, she still get a bit anxious but its nothing like it used to be. Shes a lot calmer in herself and we had no meltdowns with weeks. Mealtimes is much better now, no more eating aggressively and we are able to go to restaurants again. I feel less tense and less stressed myself as a result. We still get days that might not be great, but big improvement to the way it used to be.
Mum Theresa, Cobh, Cork
8 year old boy diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder
My son Fionn is eight years of age. Fionn was diagnosed with Autism at age two. His symptoms of anxiety began around three and a half years which gradually got to a point where I had to remove him from school and home school him. Fionn at this point toe walked, self harmed – biting his knee and his wrist, had Pica and was all the time sick or constipated or both. When I started to home school him 80 percent of these stopped, what stayed with Fionn was his anxiety of babies and toddlers crying which was very hard to live with as children, toddlers and babies are every where. Fionn would hit other kids as a result of this anxiety of noise, he said it really hurt his ears.
I tried several therapies all which helped a little but his sensitivity to noise was at 90 per cent continually. Fionn started at age eight on the ConfidentCalmKids Autism Intervention Cork programme and he completed the level 1 of the program. The change in him is huge, it was the last piece of the puzzle for him. He is still challenged by everyday life with Autism but his sensitivity to noise is gone from 90 per cent I would say to 10 per cent. It has given Fionn a quality of life to enjoy other children and events in life, family and friends, I could never take him too before. Reasoning with Fionn is there now, which was never there before, he would just lash out and run because the noise hurt him so much. As a result of his anxiety being lowered he can now enjoy foods he could never eat before because of constipation. I am now happy and Fionn is happy to go back into school confident that he can cope.
Mum Jan, Cork
7 year old boy diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Before my son started the ConfidentCalmKids Autism Intervention Cork programme, his meltdowns were very bad if he didn’t get his own way, and would get angry. He also wouldn’t go to bed unless there was someone in the room with him. He would not go outdoors much to play also.
Since he started the program with Michael, it is only occasionally he has a meltdown, he is less argumentative or demanding, he is able to control his anger better. He accepts when you say no, it means no! He goes into bed himself and stays there all night. He also expresses his feelings better to us . And also goes playing outside more now . My son really enjoyed the sessions with Michael and I would recommend this program to any parent . Michael is very professional and friendly, and will help your child like he did mine, in any way he can .
Mum Gillian, Cork
11 year old boy diagnosed with High functioning Autism
Before commencing the ConfidentCalmKids Autism Intervention Cork programme my son found concentration on any task particularly difficult. He also struggled with communicating his thoughts and feelings and physical feelings accurately to me. I noticed a gradual subtle improvement in all these areas. He accepts our restrictions on technology time which he would have resisted prior to this. He reads books more now and creates various movable intricate items from random lego which he would have previously restricted himself to the plans with the set.
His theory of mind has improved. He is eating very well consistently and sleeping soundly and for longer rather waking at the dawn following a sound nights sleep. His physical pinching and hitting himself has reduced in occurrences also. He communicates his thoughts and feelings to us more often also. In conclusion, the program has shown to assist the existing structures we have in place between home and school and in my opinion is a complimentary therapy option to assist in reducing anxiety in my child diagnosed with High functioning Autism.
Mum Marnie, Cork
7 year old boy Diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder
My 7 year old son has Sensory Processing disorder, for him this means he is easily overwhelmed by Noises, Smells and Touch. He also struggles with Proprioception, Vestibular and Interoception. Also as part of SPD he has Oral Sensory Defensiveness which means he only eats certain foods, usually foods that are white in colour. He gets really anxious around changes in routines and the unknown.
I became aware about the ConfidentCalmKids Autism intervention Cork programme through my GP. I spoke to Michael on the phone, he emailed me information and I met with him in person before starting my son on the program. There was never any question unanswered, Michael was courteous, professional and friendly.
Through the three modalities within the program my son became more calm within himself, could transition between tasks easier, he even began to eat more food plus he tried new foods. He became more confident within himself and in social circumstances, asking children to play where he wouldn’t have done that in the past. He began to verbalise his thoughts and explain his feelings more, there were less meltdowns.
Michael is a real advocate for what he does, he believes in the holistic approach and this resonates in the way he treats his clients. When my son first started with the program he did a session of Brain training, then he incorporated Kinesiology and Primitive Reflexes. These were all simple non-evasive sessions, this was very important as my son gets overwhelmed by light touch, but he never once had a meltdown at a session or after.
Michael was amazing with my son from the first day that they met and as the sessions progressed, my son became more and more open, friendly and chatty with Michael. I know when I first heard that little sensors would have to go on my son’s head for the brain training, I was thinking oh I don’t know, my son doesn’t like anyone touching his head (hates getting his hair cut or washed), but I thought what have we to lose. After my first face to face meeting with Michael he gave me a few sensors to take home and show my son. I let my son touch them and that stood to him as he knew what was going to happen ahead of time, so it omitted some of the anxiety of a new situation and environment. Michael always explained to my son what he was going to do to him before he did anything which was really wonderful.
Michael is such a kind person and from day one he treated my son with the upmost respect. My son was happy to go every week and never once did he not want to go, that is testament to Michaels approach.
I would highly recommend the ConfidentCalmKids Autism intervention Cork programme to anyone who maybe wants to try an alternative type of therapy for children who are struggling with anxiety, sensory issues, have low concentration levels and poor social skills.
Mum Carol, Cork
14 year old boy diagnosed with Aspergers
Since beginning the ConfidentCalmKids Autism intervention Cork programme with Michael, my son has improved in areas that he previously had significant difficulties, such as communication, concentration and dealing with frustration and stress. He has always been very slow at copying things down off the board in school and has now made noticeable progress here. We have also noticed him having more confidence in himself. He has really enjoyed each session and comes away feeling very relaxed and happy.
Mum Noelle, Cork