Care Carnival to help connect parents of children with special needs
Her older son was 11 when he was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and dyslexia while her second son was three when he was diagnosed with autism.
Ms Lilian Kuan, 49, who is the main caregiver of Arvind Ramesh, now 14, and Ashwin, eight, said: "I was more worried for Ashwin as I had never heard about autism before... Four years ago, awareness was a lot less. And the more I read about it, the more I was worried as the condition is different for different children in their ability to function."
But it did not stop the working mum from running her own consultancy business."It helps that running my own business meant that I have the flexibility to manage my schedule," she said.
In 2017, Ms Kuan started two support chat groups where she connected with more than 130 parents of children with special needs to share experiences and frustrations and support each other.
She said: "I started the WhatsApp chat groups when I couldn't find any support before my boy started primary one."
Ms Kuan is the co-chair of the inaugural Care Carnival, a caregiver initiative led by parents, for parents. The carnival seeks to connect, enable and empower caregivers of children and youth with special needs.
Held at the Enabling Village in Lengkok Bahru, the one-day event tomorrow will feature experts who will provide insights on how to integrate therapy into everyday routines.
Another mother who will be attending the event is Ms Julia Chan, 35, whose son was diagnosed with autism when he was three. She is also a working mum, and one of her biggest challenges is getting her son to independently complete a routine.
The principal executive of the social media team at the National Trades Union Congress said: "For most of us, the routine of brushing our teeth and getting dressed for work or school every morning comes so naturally, and sometimes we take this for granted."