Resources for Neurodiversity (RFN) is an organisation that aims to create awareness about neuro-developmental conditions in children across Pakistan. Neurodiversity is the idea that there isn't one 'typical' type of brain. Instead, there are different variations of the mind, some of which result in Autism, ADHD, Conduct Disorder, Dyslexia, etc. More importantly, all these variations are equally significant.
At present, RFN does not provide psychological services of its own but works to connect different service providers with users (i.e. parents and caregivers). Additionally, we also aim to function as a liaison between various service providers to help promote a more connected field.
Many organisations have been carrying out vital work to create awareness about mental health. RFN adds to this work by not only creating awareness but also developing a recognition towards mental health conditions, especially those in children. Instead of working as a separate entity, we aim to work collaboratively with different organisations to bridge the gap that exists between different branches of this field. Moreover, we believe that our work should be based on first-hand research to have a real-world impact. Hence, we have our research department currently working on developing research studies of publishable-standards.
Neurodiversity is the idea that there isn’t one type of ‘normal’ brain. Instead, there are different variations, and all of those variations are equally important. These variations can include those labelled with Dyspraxia, Dyslexia, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Dyscalculia, Autistic Spectrum, Tourette Syndrome, and others. These conditions should not be treated as disease or injury since they are the result of genes and not the environment. Therefore, to be neurodiverse does not mean that there is a disorder to be fixed. The acceptance of Neurodiversity is essential in reducing stigma around thinking and learning differences. With this, individuals can fully participate as members of society as they are supported and given an equal opportunity to succeed.
Mental health issues experienced by adults have always been stigmatised in Pakistan, but slowly they are becoming part of the conversation, and the same needs to be done for conditions experienced by children. We want to spread correct knowledge, while creating a safe space for all individuals.
We aim to establish a list of therapists, organisations, inclusive schools and other resources, to make it easier for parents to find help. This will be done by collecting data from individuals who provide relevant services, verify the information and arrange it in an easy manner. The purpose of this directory is to be a one-stop resource, for early intervention.
Pakistan severely lags behind in the amount of psychological research that is being carried out in the country. Treatments and interventions are based on findings from other countries which may or may not apply to our population. That's why we want to carry out our own research, aimed at the Pakistani population.
HOW TO HELP
RFN prides itself in being an inter-disciplinary organisation that works with individuals and organisations in all fields. We believe that this is essential in adopting a holistic approach to mental health and neurodiversity. If you fall into one of the categories below, click 'read more' to find out more about how you can help out. If these categories don't apply to you, click 'get in touch' to speak to a member of our team to discuss personalised options for how you could contribute.