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Convention helps people learn to cope with FASD
A preventable disorder is still a concern in Saskatchewan. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder affects a person's ability to cope in life. Conventions, like the one held in Saskatoon this week, hope to give a better understanding of FASD, so those with it can lead a better life.
Sandy Overs adopted two children. She didn't know they both suffered from FASD. "Once they started getting into school, into kindergarten, grade one, we started seeing some of the behaviours."
But like many parents, Overs didn't know what was wrong, because 20 years ago the disorder wasn't well known. Since then, a growing understanding has led to better support in school and in the community.
Overs says that's made all the difference. "They both graduated from high school in an alternate education program and my son is working full time."
Conventions like the one held in Saskatoon this week gather people who live with and work with FASD to share knowledge and support.
It's put on by the FASD Support Network of Saskatchewan. A group of parents started it 20 years ago, and now it's the province's key educator and support service.
It's believed one in 100 people in Saskatchewan have FASD, even though it's preventable. FASD affects emotions, reactions, even memory and language.
Many with the disorder need extra help, like an alarm reminding them to take medication or a mentor to help with certain daily tasks.
Marion Tudor works with the FASD Support Network of Saskatchewan. "People with FASD can be very successful if we can find the keys to supporting them."
This convention shows there is hope and there is help. And the network wants the people here to spread that message into the community to help prevent FASD and better support those living with it.