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(Ireland) Dad to walk 350 miles to show lack of ASD services; 'the case with a lot of families'

THE father of an autistic boy is taking on the 570-kilometre [354 miles] Malin Head to Mizen Head challenge to raise money and to raise awareness about the lack of support and services for families like his. Next month Dermot McGann will set off to walk the entire length of Ireland motivated by the problems he knows other people also face.

“We have a little boy called Tom who has autism and is preverbal and myself and my wife Kay have really been disappointed and frustrated at the support, services and waiting lists out there both publicly and privately as is the case with a lot of families.”…

His six-year-old son Tom was diagnosed with autism at the age of three and currently has to go to a school outside his area in County Laois.

Dermot feels that Tom fell through the through cracks when it came to accessing services because of Covid lockdown.

He described Tom as ‘preverbal’ because they hope that he will, with the right therapy, learn to talk.

He fears that the lack of services where he lives in Ballacolla has made Tom more isolated from kids the same age in the area….

Dermot and Kay McGann with sons Tom and Jack


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