picture of a woman with her son at home

Helping parents to support their child in the early stages of life sets the foundation for children to experience the world around them better. In 2019, our EarlyBird and Teen Life Licensed Users supported 2,105 families with autistic children and young people.

What are the programmes?

EarlyBird (under five years), EarlyBird Plus (ages four-nine) and Teen Life (ages 10-16) are support programmes for parents and carers, offering advice and guidance on strategies and approaches for supporting young autistic children. Both programmes work on understanding autism, building confidence to encourage interaction and communication, and understanding and supporting behaviour. EarlyBird Plus is the only autism family support programme which specialises in children aged 4-9 and focuses on a consistent approach between home and school.

Teen Life is a six-session parent support programme for parents of young people on the autism spectrum aged between 10 to 16 years.

Autism experienced professionals within education, social care or health, in the UK or internationally can train with us to become an EarlyBird Licensed User and support families with autistic children and young people in their local areas.

Find out how to apply

What is included?

Once licensed you will:

  • receive an initial 3-year license to deliver the programme (with the option to renew)
  • receive materials to deliver the programme
  • gain access to ongoing support from the EarlyBird team
  • gain access to our licensed user online network

As a parent I will be forever grateful for having the opportunity to go on EarlyBird when Daniel was very young, 18 years ago now, because these are the skills I learnt and have taken forward through Daniels life growing up and he’s doing amazing now as an adult.

- Parent attendee on the EarlyBird programme

What are the requirements for training?

To access training you must:

  • be a team of at least two autism experienced professionals
  • have experience of working with autistic children in the relevant age groups (EarlyBird – under 5 years, EarlyBird Plus – ages 4-9, Teen Life 10-16 years)
  • have experience of running workshops or training sessions with parents or professionals.

Scheduled courses

EarlyBird 3-day Licensed User Training

EarlyBird Plus 3-day Licensed User Training

Teen Life 2-day Licensed User Training 

Cost:  £1,095 + VAT per person

Cost: £1,095 + VAT per person1

Cost: £675 + VAT per person


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New dates to be confirmed

1 We offer EarlyBird Plus training at a reduced rate for EarlyBird licensed users with a current three-year licence who have delivered at least one full EarlyBird Programme

For an application pack and further details about becoming a licensed EarlyBird, EarlyBird Plus, or Teen Life trainer, please email us at training.enquiries@nas.org.uk

Email us to request an application

In-house training - at your workplace

We can also offer the Licensed User Training courses at your venue. This will be subject to minimum and maximum numbers, and all applicants would need to fulfil the applicant criteria described above.

For information on booking in-house training please get in touch by completing our training enquiry form. Our team will contact you directly to discuss this with you further.

Get in touch


Healthy Minds Programme

Over the past year, we have been reviewing all of our EarlyBird products. As part of this review, we have updated the EarlyBird Plus Programme. It will now include some of the areas which were previously covered by our Healthy Minds Programme. The updated EarlyBird Plus will be available to users from September 2019.

In addition, we have found that our Teen Life Programme also includes some areas which are covered within the Healthy Minds Programme. As a result, the National Autistic Society have decided to withdraw Healthy Minds Licensed User training.

We will continue to provide support to existing licensed users until their licence period ends and materials will be available until March 2022.

If you have any questions regarding these changes please address them to healthyminds@nas.org.uk