I am Patricia, the Family Joy Expert!
I help families with neurodiverse children. Examples of Neurodiverse conditions are Autism (ASD), ADHD, ADD, dyslexia and others such as dyspraxia.
I support families to move away from stress, overwhelm, anxiety and worry to relief, happiness, better family balance and joy.
I achieve this in my programs by utilising my 9 step Family Joy Model and working with both the family and the child. I take a holistic approach whereby I look at the family as a whole rather than the child as an individual that needs to be “fixed.”
I have 2 boys who are neurodiverse, and having gone through many struggles with them, it prompted me to create Social Living Solutions. I wanted to provide parents with understanding and practical support, and to just know that there is someone working in this area that just “gets it.” This is one of the biggest compliments some of my clients with autism give me “you just get it”, “you understand me.” I get it. Yes! I get it, without any judgment or personal opinion of you and your circumstances.
I too have experienced the overwhelm, stress and worry from being an autism parent. I have experienced those same judgemental looks from strangers in shopping centres and been told your child needs more discipline by complete strangers as well as close family.
Having worked with neurodiverse children in the school system. Even when the child can integrate into school, they simply don’t get the attention and support they need to thrive. They are often viewed as the problem that needs to be fixed; rather than as one part to a whole equation. We examine and structure a plan and model to support a better life, more balance and more joy.
Not- For -Profit participation with Specialisterne
I also work as a Consultant with a Not- For -Profit organisation called Specialisterne. Specialisterne (which translates from Danish as ‘The Specialists’) is an innovative social business concept originally founded in Denmark in 2004. Specialisterne is internationally recognised as the first and foremost example of how autistic adults can become effectively included in society and provide valuable, high quality services to their employers.
Ongoing Business Enablement Support” (OBES) Consultant with specialisterne I support autistic individuals to become effectively included in their work environment and support them to provide valuable, high quality services to their employers.
I have also worked in public health programs and have extensive experience defining challenges, then researching and implementing solutions. This has enabled me to define and understand the needs of my clients.
Marymead Autism Centre Committee Member
Marymead Autism Centre is focussed on transforming the lives of children, young people and their families.
I am currently an active committee member of Maymead assisting in addressing the complex issues that surround the families of Autistic children. We provide specialist, early intervention, clinical therapeutic services and support programs and services. Marymead also offers innovative, person-centred support services for people with disability and their families. Find out more about Marymead here
“ We have been working with a wonderful lady, Patricia Falcetta from Social Living Solutions, she has helped me and my boys immensely. We are on our way to a brighter and happier future.”
LISTEN TO PATRICIA ON ‘LIFE ON THE SPECTRUM’ RADIO SHOW
– RADIO CANBERRA
Brought to you by Radio Canberra, Dougal Austin and Jeremy Samson have been taking their show: Life On The Spectrum around the country to increase awareness and understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
They were joined in Canberra by Patricia Falcetta who has two children with ASD and operates Social Living Solutions to help families with a lived experience of Autism.
All three spoke to ABC Radio Canberra Afternoons host Paula Kruger about what it is like growing up with communication difficulties and autism.
Global Goodwill Ambassador and Humanitarian
Global Goodwill Ambassadors (GGA) recognises good people performing humanitarian work while promoting initiatives to serve the people who need them most. GGA is an unbiased group with over 11,000 humanitarians in 208 territories.
GAA believe in taking action with urgency in order to raise public awareness about some of the most pressing issues facing today’s society with the goal to promote great opportunities for those in need.
Find out more about Global Goodwill Ambassadors here
With an abundance of personal and professional experience working with children with a range of special needs, I understand the frustrations parents, families and the individual with challenges face every day: dealing with the school system, supporting learning, helping them cope with change, encouraging friendships, dealing with bullies, and all the while trying to build confidence and self-efficacy.
I have a Diploma in Positive Psychology, and qualifications in education support and supporting children with disabilities. I also have qualifications in business, and have designed, implemented and delivered many training programs in both the private and government sectors. I am a qualified facilitator and tutor.
I also have a Working with Vulnerable People card and relevant police checks.
Continued Education & Trainging
I believe in order for me to help you the most, I need to be armed with the most effective and up to date skills and tools available. This means I regularly attended conferences, short courses and workshops. Most recently I have attended:
- Professional development on Working to support the mental health of children with an intellectual disability through Emerging Minds: National Workforce Centre for Child Mental Health.
- Inclusive Education: The Advocate’s Kitbag for Families
- National Inclusion Conference: The National Inclusion Conference presented opportunities to hear from local, national and international speakers sharing stories and approaches of how a clear vision and self-direction can lead to meaningful and inclusive lives for people with disabilities.
- Towards a Better Life: A 2 day workshop that included:
- Developing an understanding of social devaluation and its consequences for people who are marginalised
- Social Role Valourisation as a means of addressing those experiences of devaluation
- Strengthened my motivation to counteract devaluation in the lives of people I know and support
- Clarify the features of a good life and the essential means of obtaining that good life
- Youth Mental Health First Aid course
- ACT Multicultural Summit Community Roundtables: examining how to continue strengthening Canberra as a diverse city September 2018.
- Autistic Womens and Girls Mental Health Symposium
- Emotional Management of Children and Teens with ASD Attwood and Garnett events
About this time last year when he was still in year 6 I really started to worry about how he would manage high school after several years of a really supportive primary school environment and being in essentially the same group of kids since year 2. I knew high schools offer one or two extra transition days to special needs kids but I knew S would need a lot more than that.
I contacted Patricia to see if she would be able to set up a transition program for S and help him successfully transition through to Year 7. We settled on a weekly session one afternoon after school for a bit of Year 6 term 3 and all of term 4, with the sessions to continue through terms 1 and 2 of Year 7 if necessary. I had these discussions around the time of our NDIS plan review so was able to ask for NDIS funds to cover the sessions (we are self managed).
So last year Patricia became a regular visitor to our home, each week bringing resources and examples about timetables and homework deadlines and assignments and how the school day is arranged and what lockers are for and the 1001 ways high school is different from primary school. And *really* listening to S’s questions and concerns. She also offered to come and advocate at any meetings with the school but this did not turn out to be needed in our case.
Patricia was so successful in preparing S for this transition that he actually sailed into high school. I was gobsmacked to say the least. We have had zero issues with staying organised, managing the homework load, coping with moving around the school and all the different teachers and their different expectations, and making new friends. In fact half way through term one of this year he announced to both Patricia and myself that he did not need her help anymore!
As I’ve said Patricia worked well with S and he felt super comfortable with her. She also worked closely with me and provided me with much needed support, with a considered approach. I can not recommend her highly enough. It was because of her thoughtful and insightful work with S that he (and we as a family) had the smoothest transition we have ever had in his whole life. He goes off to the school bus every morning with a big smile on his face.
Patricia saved us so much drama at what is usually a super stressful time in the lives of families like ours.”
What I do
Depending on your particular family situation I have a wholistic approach whereby I follow my 9 step Family Joy framework to help both your child and your family as a whole, move towards better family balance and peace. I look at all aspects that are affecting your child with additional needs and I work with and support your child to help them cope in times of transition or crisis; in areas of educational, emotional and social difficulty; and on their sense of worth and confidence in their ability to navigate situations. it is important to note that I look at the family unit as a whole and may suggest change that other family members may need to make to get the family to their ultimate destination of more family joy and better family balance.
In short, I provide practical assistance for your everyday family struggles.
You can find out more about my services here.
How I work
My goal is to provide a bridge of support between family, school and specialists.
I take a collaborative approach, and work with parents and any professionals involved in your child’s therapy. Increasing your child’s self confidence and decreasing their anxiety is paramount, because belief in their own abilities leads to improved performance and resilience.
My aim is to develop a relationship with your family and child, and help them in a practical way – whether in your home or at school.
Children and adolescents with additional needs have a lot to offer, but sometimes find it hard to reach their full potential due to lack of support.
I can help you to support your child: partnering with the family unit in a positive and practical way, reducing the stress on you, and giving your child another trusted source of care and positivity.