We're sharing Richard's story as part of our Accept My Autism campaign, running throughout April
Richard was a student at Portfield School from the age of 6, at which time he had very limited language and didn't speak, and would often be hiding under the tables. At the age of 9 he had started to put words together, and he said 'Mummy' for the first time. He enjoyed his time at Portfield School, and made some close friends as well as being awarded 'Student of the Year'.
When Richard was 16 he progressed to Life Skills, our provision based in Christchurch for students aged 15-19. He did well here, and his speech improved greatly.
Nervously, at the age of 19, he began studying at Bournemouth and Poole College where he is currently looking forward to beginning another year from September 2019. He has made some good friends at the college, and has been on the Student Council several times too.
His mum, Carol, comments
"Richard has grown into a very caring young man, who we are very proud of. If it had not been for the staff at Portfield School and Life skills, he would not be the young man he is today. He loves to go back and visit them, and when he leaves college he would love to go and help there."