Barb Cook M.Aut.(Edu), Dip.HSc.(Nut)
Registered Developmental Educator and Integrative Nutritionist
Director & Founder – NeuroDiversity Hub & NeuroEmploy Pty Ltd
Barb is the founder of the Neurodiversity Hub in Gympie Queensland, a space providing allied health services for neurodivergent people, including one-on-one support, therapeutic groups, workshops and presentations and informal space to meet.
She is also a registered Developmental Educator, Deputy Chair of the Developmental Educators Australia Incorporated (DEAI), and an Autism and Neurodiversity Employment Consultant and Life Coach for neurodivergent adults (ADHD, autism and dyslexia).
Barb has extensive experience in working with adults on the autism spectrum and ADHD, in creating pathways in attaining life goals in the areas of self-determination and self-advocacy, education, employment, health and interpersonal relationships.
Barb holds a Master of Autism (education) with a focus on employment from the University of Wollongong where she is also a researcher and co-project lead in the area of self-determination and self-advocacy for adults on the autism spectrum.
Barb identifies as neurodivergent, being formally diagnosed mid-life with ADHD, Autism and dyslexia in 2009, and promotes a strength-based and person-centred approach in her life and work.
Barb is also the Director and Founder of NeuroEmploy Pty Ltd, a company providing a variety of neurodiversity specific educational and training programs for neurodivergent individuals, workplace staff, management and businesses.
A passionate motorcyclist, she enjoys riding the love of her life, Ron Strom Burgundy, a Suzuki VStrom DL1000, who assists her with good self-care and effective anxiety-reducing and depression busting practice.
As a Developmental Educator, Barb focuses on developing individualised learning strategies, tools and supports with positive outcomes for neurodivergent individuals across the lifespan, including but not limited to:
- Environmental audits/assessments
- Comprehensive Adaptive Behaviour Assessment & NDIS Functional Capacity Assessment (FCA) & Reports
- Assessments & Reports for NDIS (Vineland 3, WHODAS 2.0, LSP-16)
- Sensory profile Assessment & Reports
- Developing informative individual profiles
- Individualised support plans (person-centred approach)
- Positive Behaviour Support Plans
- Goal and vision planning
- Facilitating self-determination and self-advocacy
- Establishing effective communication skills
- Cultivating positive interpersonal skills
- Employment/Workplace Support – workplace social skills, executive functioning, sensory management
- Workplace mediation
- Staff/workplace training – autism, neurodiversity
- Transition Support – e.g. school to higher education, education to employment
- Developing independent living skills
- Enhancing Quality of Life (QoL) and community participation
Barb embraces a collaborative approach by working with health and educational professionals, support staff, employers, employees, families and caregivers to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding of a person-centred approach in fostering positive support and enhancement of life outcomes.
To make an appointment with Barb, please click HERE.
- Master of Autism (Education) – University of Wollongong
- Diploma of Health Science (Nutrition) – Australian College of Natural Therapies
- Certificate III Medical Business Administration – Medical Administration Training
First Aid Training
- HLTAID009 Provide cardiopulmonary resuscitation
- HLTAID010 Provide basic emergency life support
- HLTAID011 Provide First Aid
- Registered Developmental Educator #524
- Current Deputy Chair Developmental Educators Australia Inc. (DEAI)
- Professional Member – Australian Integrative Medicine Association
- Full Member – Nutrition Australia
- Professional Member – Blue Knot Foundation, National Centre of Excellence for Complex Trauma
Barb has extensive professional training, clinical supervision and clinical experience in the areas of autism and ADHD in adults. Barb works alongside leading world authorities on autism, Professor Tony Attwood and Dr Michelle Garnett, and co-created and co-delivers the Masterclass on Diagnosis and Intervention of Autism for Girls and Women for health professionals and educators. She has extensively worked alongside a variety of clinical psychologists, including working at the Minds and Hearts Clinic in Brisbane which specialises in autism. Barb works extensively in academic research, with published research papers on autism and mental health. Also, she has been engaged in casual part-time teaching in the Master of Autism (education) post-graduate degree program.
Barb is registered with the following professional associations with her relevant specialised degree qualifications and specialist assessment training to conduct clinical assessments:
- Pearson Clinical Level B
- Psychological Assessments Australia Level C, M, ADI-R & ADOS-2
- Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) WFP, spare 2, WFP1, WFP2, WFP1R, WFP2R, WFP-FC
Recognition for Barb
Barb was recently awarded the “A Different Brilliant” award at the Aspect National Recognition Awards in Sydney and the Leadership Support Award from the Neurodiversity Academy. In 2017 she received a Special Commendation from Queensland’s Governor, his Excellency, Paul De Jersey for the Autism Queensland Creative Futures Awards.
For more information on Barb and her extensive work click HERE.