Saturday, February 12, 2011

'I am, how it feels to be me' Art Exhibition - January 2011

Sharon Malpass thought, after watching her daughter express herself through drawing, that it would be a great idea to organise a small Art Exhibition.

Sharon discussed the idea with a group of parents who all had girls on the autism spectrum and then approached the City of Salisbury who were very pleased to be able to support the wonderful exhibition, providing girls living in the north and north eastern suburbs with an opportunity to display their artistic expression.  
Steve Davidson from City of Salisbury preparing the paintings for hanging

This Exhibition, which was very proudly support by the City of Salisbury and sponsored by Rainbowland Autism Services has provided the girls involved with a very important opportunity to showcase their talents and to express who they are through art.  Children with autism don’t often get these special opportunities. Holding events like this is essential for growing confidence and self belief and to provide avenues for individuals to reach their potential in life. The Art Exhibition is also a wonderful opportunity to raise awareness about girls on the spectrum, which the community knows very little about. 

On Thursday 27th January, the Art Exhibition official opening was a huge success.  The event was attended by 
  • Kelly Vincent – State Member of the Legislative Council
  • Mark Butler – Federal Member for Port Adelaide
  • Tony Zappia – Federal Member for Makin
  • Frances Bedford – State Member for Florey
  • Betty Gill - Councillor: City of Salisbury
A big congratulations to all the wonderful girls who submitted their art for this amazing and inspiring exhibition. 
Holly-anne, Kristie, Lucy, Jenna, Lily, Zoe, Charlotte, Isobel and Jessica.

This event was very proudly sponsored by Rainbowland Autism

     Holly-anne receiving her certificate

Kristie receiving her certificate

Below you will find all the wonderful art work on display at The Mawson Centre, Mawson Lakes (South Australia). 

Holly-anne - aged 7 "The Inner Star"

Holly-anne - aged 7 "The Robot"

Holly-anne - aged 7 "Water"

Kristie - aged 12 "Michael Jackson"

Kristie - aged 12 "Miku"

Kristie - aged 12 "Miku"

Lucy - aged 9 "My Head"

Lucy - aged 9 "This is Me"

Jenna - aged 7 "Happy Land"

Jenna - aged 7 "Holidays"

Lily - aged 8 "I Love My Dog"

Lily - aged 8 "Mosquito"

Zoe - aged 7 "Egyptian"

Zoe - aged 7 "I Love Rainbows"

Charlotte - aged 7 "Favourite Activities"

Charlotte - aged 7 "Home"

Charlotte - aged 7 "Charlotte Playing"

Isobel - aged 7 "Butterfly Friends"
Isobel - aged 7 "The Little Mermaid"

Jessica - aged 7 "Being Happy"
Jessica - aged 7 "Me"

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Autism Poem ~ Rainbows in a row By Erik Estabrook

This poem was inspired by the Autism Rainbow Day - Global Awareness Campaign

I am lucky

I see rainbows,
you are lucky to have seen one
Autism Rainbow Day - Friday 1st April 2011
but'  I see rainbows in a row
this one has a pattern that shines magenta bright,
the next one has colors lemon yellow,
they shine for understanding,
they shine for love
they shine with a glow that brightens over the sun
what's extra special is these rainbows can care
they just need you to learn
 listen and be aware
we are shining brightly because one may always show,
just open your heart
feel your spark,
and let your rainbow glow!

by Erik Estabrook

Erik Estabrook
Erik Estabrook biography (published on

Erik Estabrook is autistic and a young aspiring poet that writes for purity, purity of expression and the value of life. He is joyful about the fact that he has an international audience and isn’t just writing to himself. His best expressions are yet to come, even after being published over 60 times, and having authored 5 published poetry books.

Erik Estabrook, Poet & contributing writer Naturally Autistic International online newsletter

Erik wants to add a beautiful touch to the world, poetry is his way of fixing the planets’ problems. He enjoys community advocacy and volunteering. Writing has provided a window to his own soul and increased his relationship with God.  In the future with his writing he hopes to touch lives and increase autism awareness.
Erik is self-taught and not afraid to try any poetry form.  He had found the cinquain and villanelle to be 2 of his favorite forms.  In his words, “They allow an entirely new perspective and should be respected because they make poetry even more diverse.  When you get one right there’s no feeling like it. Getting one right to me means you add your way to the form.”
When asked what he enjoys most he says, “… a peaceful life with my family and volunteering brings me peace of mind with time to help others.”

You can learn more about Erik Estabrook by visiting his website at:

You can read about Erik’s journey as a young emerging and very talented poet in the Premiere Issue of Naturally Autistic magazine – Fall

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Kelly & Wyatt Green Launch AutismHWY.cocm


Kelly Green is the mother of a very sweet almost 12 year old non-verbal autistic boy. She is super excited to ANNOUNCE the creation of a very special website!!!! At people that are living on and around the spectrum can log~on and seek out friendships with like-minded individuals. Please, take a look at their Promo Video here on their Youtube channel! provides FREE MEMBERSHIPS! Affording you the space to share your thoughts, photos and videos with friends you enjoy. There are fun games to play and a forum to reach out to others on issues you choose. Articles and Event submissions will be continually coming in to keep everyone informed and up to date on our the interesting and ever-evolving A.S.D. world!! 

Kelly began working on way back in April of 2009. A lot of time, thought and effort has been put in to making it a fun, beautiful and informative environment for everyone to create their own FUN, friendship network!! Click here to read more about that!

I hope that you will become a member of and share with your social networks.  Please help to spread the word! 

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Rainbowland's 2010 City-Bay Fun Run Team

This year, Rainbowland is entering the Adelaide City-Bay Fun Run for the first time and is registered as a charity for the event.

How You Can Support the Rainbowland City-Bay Team
Why You Should Get Involved in 2011
  • Get fit while having fun;
  • Raise money for Rainbowland to support the autism awareness campaign 'Autism Rainbow Day', Family Support Group 'Rainbowland Play Time', online support and other important Rainbowland services;
  • Raise awareness for autism;
  • Receive a T-Shirt & Hat (colour of your choice);
We are extremely grateful to our sponsors who have enabled us to provide our team members with colourful shirts and caps to wear on the day. Ours sponsors are Adelaide Compounding & Wellness Consultants (Priceline Pharmacy at Firle) and Badge (Offices in Adelaide, Brisbane & Perth).

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Rainbowland Autism Services Featured at Learn to be Buddies

Guest post by Allison Dix from Rainbowland Autism Services....

Our Family...

Our three children were all diagnosed as having an autism spectrum disorder in July 2007. Kristie, who was 8 at the time, was diagnosed with a Asperger’s Syndrome. Our twin sons, Jacob and Aaron, were diagnosed with autism one week shy of their 3rd birthday.
Rainbow Play Time

Shortly following the diagnosis, Shane and I vowed to help support families through the whole process as we intently believed that it didn’t have to be as difficult for others as it was for us. This vow lead to the inception of our family support group, Rainbowland Play Time in March 2009. With a focus on family inclusion and support, this group runs once a month on a Sunday, has no age limits and welcomes the entire family and their support networks to attend for a gold coin donation.

Rainbowland Play Time has been a gift not just to the families who attend, but to our family. We have made some wonderful friends and been witness to some fabulous milestones experienced by the children and their families. My favourite moments have been when children ride a bike for the first time at Play Time. The delight on the face of the child and their parents is so precious and makes it all so worthwhile.

Into the political arena...

Shane & I were fortunate enough to be selected for a meeting with the Prime Minister, Kevin Rudd, at the Federal Cabinet Meeting & Public Forum held on 28th July 2009. We raised issues pertaining to the inaccessibility of the newly implemented early intervention funding from the Helping Children with Autism initiative, the crisis and inequities for children with autism within the education systems around the country and the struggles faced by families. To our surprise, we were also granted an impromptu meeting with the Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Children Services, Bill Shorten.

Rainbowland Autism Services...

Rainbowland Autism Services Inc. was incorporated in November 2009 and granted charity status. A board, comprising of 6 members was established. The incorporation of the organisation will ensure much greater opportunities for the families it supports.

Autism Rainbow Day...

After a family discussion in the kitchen regarding the lack of autism awareness within the community and how more awareness would greatly benefit families and society at large, Autism Rainbow Day was born. On 30th April this year, the inaugural Autism Rainbow Day was held, with 15,000 international members on the dedicated Facebook cause. The day was very uplifting and positive for those who participated and it was wonderful to see people greeting others with a “Happy Autism Rainbow Day”.

I have received some wonderful feedback from educators about how they now have a much greater appreciation of what autism is and how inspired they are when learning about the obstacles that need to be overcome for people on the spectrum to become functioning members of society. Our daughter’s Year 6 class teacher initiated meaningful discussions about autism throughout the week in the lead-up up to Autism Rainbow Day and Kristie’s life and achievements were celebrated by her peers. What has been really touching is how some young students from the school have since approached me in the court yard to talk about Autism Rainbow Day. I also got quite emotional when I saw pictures of the children wearing their special masks on the big screen at the school assembly. Autism Rainbow Day will be held on Friday 29th April in 2011.

A Tribute...

On 13th May this year, Tony Zappia – Federal Member for Makin paid tribute to the work we are doing through Rainbowland Play Time and Autism Rainbow Day. It was such an honour for us that he dedicated his entire Parliamentary Speech to our work.

In his speech, Tony says:

“In Australia autism is estimated to affect one in every 160 Australian children and around 30,000 Australian families. The estimated cost of autism to the Australian community is around $7 billion per annum. The social impacts on and costs to the children and those 30,000 families in the form of learning difficulties, limited social opportunities for the children and very high rates of parental depression and separation are immeasurable. There is no cure for autism but providing the right kind of early intervention can be very beneficial for children and, in turn, ultimately saves millions of dollars in costs later on.”

He then went on to say:

“Speech therapy, early intervention, occupational therapy and home modifications all help, but for the families they come at a cost, as does the destruction to the school life of the children, which raises an additional concern. Many schools are simply unprepared; they do not have the resources or the expertise to deal with children with autism. In that respect, autism-specific preschools such as that in Brisbane are a terrific start.”

Tony has been such a wonderful support to our organisation and is the Patron of Rainbowland Play Time. Through his work, he is also advocating for all families living with autism in Australia.

Our goal...

Rainbowland Autism Services strives to provide support services for the entire family. When you support the network of people who are the main influence in a child’s life, you are directly supporting the child. We also provide support to families of children with developmental delay. Too often these families don’t have access to support services in the absence of an ASD diagnosis. We continue to work assiduously in expanding our support services and generating awareness about autism at a global level through Autism Rainbow Day.

For more information, you can visit our website at, or email us at rainbowlandautismservices @

To find out more about having your charity, service or business spotlighted on the Learn to be Buddies Blog, contact us or visit