Maria started a not-for-profit organisation for families affected by FASD called FASD Network UK and connects with over 1000 families who are facing the daily challenges of a lack of systemic support. Her interest in Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) stemmed from having direct experience of caring for a number of children with the condition. FASD is a permanent lifelong disability caused by prenatal alcohol exposure. FASD Network provide bespoke training for organisations to allow them to support individuals, support groups for families raising children with FASD, strategic development support, and conduct their own research and work with multi-agency partners.
Maria raises awareness and delivers training to multi-agency practitioners from health, education, community, addiction, justice, fostering, adoption, early intervention, social work, and other agencies. Her background is in social work, social care, community development and learning disabilities. She has worked within the voluntary sector for more than 30 years. She is the author of ‘Understanding FASD: A guide for parents, carers, and professionals’, which combines her lived experience as a foster carer with a practitioner’s perspective.See more from Maria Catterick