OTARC Folk Out & About – October to December 2016

Prof at MIND, US Davis, USA

7 October

Professor Cheryl Dissanayake visited Stanford University and presented an invited address. She also met with the Stanford Autism Research Group, hosted by Prof Antony Harden, Prof Joachim Hallmayer & Dr Chongying Wang.


8 October

Professor Cheryl Dissanayake visited UC Davis and presented an invited address at the MIND Institute. She met with Dr Cynthia Zierhut, Professor Sally Ozonoff, Professor Sally Rogers, Dr Marjorie Soloman, and attended Professor Sally Rogers’ lab meeting. aShe also had a roundtable with interested post docs at the MIND.


14 October

Dr Nancy Sadka and OTARC Lab Manager, Alex Aulich manned a booth at the Maternal & Child Health Conference, Melbourne Exhibition Centre.


Melinda Denham attended a talk on Autism and Employment by Vicky Little, Employment Coordinator at Aspect Capable, to gather information for ASCareers (an employment hub for people with autism that we are currently building in partnership with Salesforce, ACRC and Specialisterne).


26 October

Melinda Denham attended a workshop in Sydney on philanthropy and fundraising with Kingsley Aikins, provided by Social Ventures Australia, to learn about new techniques in fundraising.


28 October to 17 November

Dr Josephine Barbaro visited Nepal together with our PhD candidate, Rena Shrestha. Rena’s research, supervised by Professor Cheryl Dissanayake and Dr Barbaro, aims to build capacity and knowledge about early manifestations of autism and to implement SACS  in a local community in Kathmandu, Nepal. To this purpose, Dr Barbaro trained 60 female community health volunteers at Kirtipur hospital to monitor children between 11–30 months and to identify those “at risk” of ASD.

Rena is the recipient of an Ausaid scholarship.

Rena Shrestha

Our PhD student, Rena Shrestha, summarised the SACS study in Nepali – Social Attention and Communication Survelliance, Nepal Partnership


Dr Barbaro at AutismCare Nepal Society.

Dr Barbaro facilitating the workshop for psychologists on “Identifying the signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder on Infants and toddlers” on November 7, 2016 at AutismCare Nepal Society.

Dr Barbaro is in Nepal to train Female Health Nurse Volunteers

Dr Barbaro is in Nepal to train Female Health Nurse Volunteers on the early signs of ASD and SACS. This project is being undertaken with AutismCare Nepal.


16 November

Kristelle Hudry visited the Judith Lumley Center at La Trobe University to meet staff and attend a presentation by Dr Jay Buzhardt, Associate Research Professor, Life Span Institute, Juniper Gardens Children’s Project, Kansas City, USA.


17 November

Melinda Denham attended a workshop by Amaze on Autism and Employment, with panels of disability employment providers, job-seekers with autism and career professionals, to gather information for ASCareers.


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