FASD-CAN Webinar Recordings


On this tab you'll find post-webinar information including recordings (where possible) and feedback responses from our ongoing programme of FASD-informed webinars.



Click on the headlines below to jump to post-webinar info.

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: The Basics

Trying Differently Rather than Harder

FASD: Setting up our Tertiary Students for Success

Cristina Fon - 'Why can't you just be good!'

FASD at School – What works for students

What Works in Schools for Tamariki and Rangatahi Māori with FASD

Overcoming School Exclusion of Rangatahi

Focus on Health: The Clinician's Perspective

Te Whare o Oro: Neurodiversity through the matapihi of the Whare Tūpuna 

PATH: Planning Alternative Tomorrows with Hope – a tool for change

Focus on Justice - FASD in Youth Court 




Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: The Basics

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

Basic knowledge of FASD is something we're asked for all the time – by caregivers and whānau, professionals and educators. And even for the most knowledgeable of us, it's sometimes good to get a refresher. 

This webinar is particularly designed for people who have limited knowledge about FASD but it is also useful for people wanting to review the basics. It will be of interest to caregivers/whānau who may be caring for an individual with FASD, as well as frontline professionals such as teachers, social or justice workers who interact with tamariki or rangatahi who may have FASD. 

Our presenter

Rose Hawkins works to create awareness of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD) and other disabilities and to support people living with these differences and those around them to live their best lives. Rose has created FASD resources and has presented about FASD at many workshops, forums and conferences in Aotearoa and internationally. She is committed to promoting simple ways to help understand and respond to FASD. Rose is a Regional Disability Advisor for the Ministry for Children in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Rose was introduced by FASD-CAN Navigator Anna Gundesen: Anna brings lived experience to her pilot role as Navigator in Tāmaki Makaurau, where she has been directly supporting caregivers and families caring for tamariki and rangitahi affected by FASD. She has just co-facilitated our first Aotearoa-centric training course in Auckland. 

Resources from the webinar

Rose mentioned a number of resources which came from the Oranga Tamariki FASD Practice Centre where there is a wealth of strategies.

She is also a fan of the 5S's - Structure, Support, Supervision, keep it Simple, build on Strengths.

Resources on this site

• Our 'Understanding FASD' page 

• Our 'Professionals' page




Trying Differently Rather Than Harder

Our second webinar for 2024. 


FASD is a brain-based condition with behavioural symptoms. This webinar will educate you on a best-practice approach for increasing understanding of FASD (and other neurobehavioural conditions), reducing frustration, and expanding options. It is intended for professionals, parents, whānau members, and caregivers working with and living with individuals who have confirmed or possible brain-based differences, including FASD.

You'll gain a new understanding of why traditional behavioural treatment techniques are frequently ineffective for individuals with brain-based differences. 

The FASCETS Neurobehavioural Model looks at the link between brain and behaviour and creates a good fit between the person, their abilities, the environment and our expectations around them. It also addresses the stresses and strains this places on the professional teams and whānau around the individual. It can open up a whole new world of more positive interaction with your tamariki or rangatahi. 

Our Presenter – Anna Gundesen

Anna is our FASD Navigator in Tāmaki Makaurau. She has facilitated many FASD trainings for FASD-CAN for whānau/caregivers and professionals. Anna brings living experience of FASD via her teenage daughter who was diagnosed at nine years old.

In 2022 Anna completed the year-long FASCETS Neurobehavioural Model Training for Facilitators developed by Diane Malbin; a brain-based approach to neurodiversity. Anna is the first Certified Facilitator of the this model here in Aotearoa.





FASD: Setting up our Tertiary Students to Succeed – March 2024

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

Our first webinar for 2024 addressed the misconceptions and stigma often associated with FASD, specifically in terms of people with FASD as tertiary learners. This webinar first appeared as a presentation at the Neuroabilities Symposium for tertiary educators held in Dunedin in October 2023, gaining an enthusiastic response from tertiary educators.

People with FASD can and do succeed in education and training beyond secondary school with the right knowledge, supports and accommodations. When we talk about ‘tertiary education’ this is not just universities and polytechnics – it includes any learning after secondary school. It is also known as higher or vocational education and can take place anywhere from building sites to farms.

This webinar will:

• present the experiences of some of those who have accessed tertiary education in Aotearoa / New Zealand
• explore educators’ understanding of the effects of prenatal alcohol exposure on the brain
• present research related to FASD within the education system
• look at disability support policies in tertiary education institutes in Aotearoa
• examine FASD-informed strategies, accommodations, modifications and supports that work well in a learning environment
• address how the employment outcomes, subsequent to gaining qualifications, can be enhanced.

Presenters: Kim Milne, Dr Leigh Henderson, Professor Anita Gibbs and Dr Joanna Chu

Three of the presenters (Kim Milne, Dr Leigh Henderson, Professor Anita Gibbs) are caregivers of people with FASD. Kim Milne is the FASD-CAN Principal Advisor and Dr Leigh Henderson is FASD-CAN's Chairperson. Professor Gibbs is an academic at the University of Otago, who has published many articles on FASD. Dr Chu is also an academic at the University of Auckland who has led extensive research into cross-sector Knowledge, Atttitudes and Practices (KAP) surveys on FASD among other research.

Please note: Educators and school support staff keen to find out more about FASD can access many resources on the Professionals / Educators page on our website.




Cristina Fon: "Why can't you just be good!" - 28 May 2022



Resources from the webinar

Although her webinar was not recorded, Cristina has kindly given us a list of her favourite FASD resources below.

Ministry of Education: Te Kete Ipurangi, strategy and education guides

Understanding FASD: A Comprehensive Guide for Pre-K-8 Educators, Duke University, North Carolina

Edmonton FASD Network – Strategies Not Solutions Handbook

The 5-Point Scale

The ALERT programme (how is your engine running?)

Andrew Huberman – the physiological sigh: breathing to relax (video)


Parenting with Positive Behaviour Support: A Parent's Guide to Problem-solving Solutions for Difficult Behaviour

Dianne Malbin: Trying Differently Rather Than Harder: Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders

Feedback from participants

"More understanding of the challenges of those with FASD and their caregivers. The need for caregivers' skills, patience and empathy for the long haul."

"That FASD is a brain injury. Learn patience and understanding; that my response to him is a cry for help to me; that there are resources out there to use; that I can ask for better help for my child. That I'm actually doing ok!""

"Some new ideas to use in our situation."

"Information. Strategies that go across neuro-diversity and not only relevant to those living with FASD; some parenting skills."

About Cristina Fon

From an interest that began over 20 years ago, Cristina has focused on developing competence in FASD over the last six years, undertaking further academic study, supervised practice and completing trainings in the assessment and interventions with FASD.

This has taken her to an online individualised training in the neuro-behavioral brain-based approach to intervention run by Diane Malbin’s organisation FASCETS Portland Oregon, and an in-person, week long intensive training with the Families Moving Forward programme run by Dr Heather Carmichael Olson from the University of Washington, Seattle. Cristina has also completed the FASD training offered by Queensland Health.

Realising that there was a central role for psychology in driving best practice and knowledge of FASD in New Zealand at this critical time, Cristina embarked on delivering a series of workshops to colleagues, whānau and professionals (lawyers, youth workers, alt ed, social workers). She also works with whānau who have children with FASD, and draws together her knowledge from her trainings as well as from her experience of working with challenging behaviour across a range of settings.

Cristina is the current Chairperson of the Nelson FASD Charity and is based in Nelson.

Contact her here.




FASD at School: What works for students – 9 May 2022

In this webinar we heard from caregivers and educators with experience supporting tamariki affected by FASD as they progress through the school system here in Aotearoa / New Zealand. 

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

Resources from the webinar

• We heard from families who would love to have support when working with teachers at their schools. Both Karen (in Auckland) and Tracey (Upper and Lower Hutt) are happy to be contacted in this regard via email below. 

Call Karen on 027 487 8290  |  Email Tracey here

ORS funding information can be found here

Police funding information – this is specifically for children who have experienced family violence. Click here for details. 

• Information about local kanohi ki te kanohi / face to face support groups can be found on our website here – if there is not one in your area, please email us and let us know, we may be able to help as we are looking at setting up more.

Further education resources on our website

• If you're a caregiver, click here for more information on advocating for your child at school.

• If you're a professional educator, click here for strategies on helping students with FASD achieve their best.

• Please note: teachers and support staff can look forward to a new Desktop Resource full of FASD-informed material relating to education in Aotearoa that will be shared here in July. 

Feedback from you

"Useful information on how to approach schools – there are lots of others who are experiencing similar issues and we’re not alone. There’s support out there!"

"Valuable sharing of personal experiences and reassurance of how important the willingness of the whole school is to encompass this learning."

"Great techniques to support rangatahi with FASD to feel empowered and included at school. Awesome kete of approaches to set the rangatahi up for success."


Tracey Blunn joined us from the Wellington region to share the actions that worked for her family when navigating the schooling system with her son David. Karen Irving shared both her personal and professional experience of schools having worked in schools with high-needs students for many years before becoming a caregiver to three foster children with FASD. She now works in schools as an independent advocate, developing plans to keep students with FASD in school. And finally, Kiri Key joined us from Tāmaki Makaurau to provide some insight into what works in schools for tamariki Māori experiencing neurodiversity. Her holistic approach is based on both her personal experience and her years as a teacher. 

Our thanks to these three wāhine toa for giving their time and sharing their wisdom.




Focus on Health: A Clinician's Perspective

This webinar will be useful to individuals with FASD and caregivers/whānau who are caring for an individual who is diagnosed with OR suspected to have FASD. Professionals requiring some general information on consultation issues in order to support whānau will also find it beneficial.  

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

Our presenters

Raimond Jacquemard is a paediatrician in Taranaki. He has a special interest in working with tamariki with developmental disabilities. He has more than 10 years experience in multidisciplinary assessment and management of children with FASD.  

Anna Carré is a neuropsychologist working with the Child Development Team in Taranaki.  Her career has been focused on the field of intellectual and neurodevelopmental disability. Anna’s work is primarily assessment and diagnosis, and working with families and professionals to support understanding and management of children and young people with neurodiversity. 




Overcoming School Exclusion of Rangatahi

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

This webinar was a personal story about reinstating a mokopuna after being excluded from school. 

Exclusion can be very traumatic for students and their whānau, especially for those who have learning difficulties. Turning around school decisions can seem overwhelming when faced with Boards of Trustees and school executives, especially if you are raising a child with FASD.

This is the story of getting a mokopuna reinstated back into the school with a number of improvements for everyone, including better supports and better communication. 

Who is this webinar for?  

This will be of interest to caregivers and whānau who may be caring for an individual suspected to have FASD. We want this webinar to inform people about their options in relation to school exclusions and arm them with power to make a difference in their kids' lives. It may also be of interest to education professionals/social workers who advocate for students with FASD. 

Our Presenter and host 

Cherryl Waerea-i-te-rangi Smith (Nga Wairiki/Ngati Apa) is a grandmother who is raising a 16 year old mokopuna who has a diagnosis of FASD. She has a PhD in Education from the University of Auckland and works as a researcher. 

Gilbert Taurua (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kāwa) has a distinguished career in the health sector in Aotearoa. With early roots in social work, his path has traversed significant roles in drug and alcohol addiction services and law reform. Gilbert has extensive governance experience and is passionate about improving health outcomes for Māori. He has recently been nominated for a role on the the FASD-CAN Board and we welcome his input to this webinar. 

Further information and advice

We’d also like to share the Exclusion to Inclusion Aotearoa NZ website which was mentioned in the webinar.

Cherryl has said she'd be happy to help any of you who may need advice around this topic – feel free to email us so we can put you in touch with her if necessary.




Te Whare o Oro – Neurodevelopment through the Matapihi of the Whare Tūpuna



Note: Te Atawhai o te Ao are creating a written resource on Te Whare o Oro which will be released in a few months. Sign up to our newsletters or follow us on Facebook to stay updated.

Dr André McLachlan follows up on our previous webinar, 'What Works in Schools for Tamariki and Rangatahi Māori with FASD'in which he touched on the subject of looking at neurodiversity through a uniquely Māori lens – one which uses the whare tūpuna as a metaphor for the brain. In this session, he goes into much more detail. 

Te Whare o Oro is a framework based on te ao Māori concepts that represents how the brain develops and works. This incorporates Bruce Perry’s neuro-sequential model of neurodevelopment (read article here), Te Whare Tapa Whā and Ngā Pou o te Wharenui. 

This webinar will explore taking a brain-based approach to understanding and supporting tangata Māori with FASD through Te Whare o Oro. 

Who is this for?

It was of interest to both caregivers/whānau who are caring for a child with FASD as well as professionals/social workers who work with tamariki Māori with FASD or are interested in FASD from a tangata Māori viewpoint – but it's a fascinating and valuable alternative viewpoint for Pakeha too. 

Our presenter

Dr André McLachlan (Ngāti Apa / Ngāti Kauae, Muaūpoko / Ngāti Pāriri) is a Clinical Psychologist and researcher at Te Rau Ora and WINTECFor many years now André has led the advancement of innovative and dynamic kaupapa Māori-based therapeutic resources. He nurtures rangatahi who enter into this field and has maintained an integral role of manākitanga for emerging Māori psychologists, both informally as a leader in clinical psychology, and formally as a lecturer for Otago University and Wintec.

He continues to develop pioneering methods of engaging with whānau with complex mental health and addictions needs. André and his partner Sarah-Jane McLachlan, who is a teacher, have lived experience of tamariki with FASD in their care.




What Works in Schools for Tamariki and Rangatahi Māori with FASD

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

This was a kōrero was presented by much-respected Māori leaders in their fields to hear what works at school for ākonga Māori. Our presenters shared their lived experiences of the education journeys they have travelled alongside tamariki and rangatahi with FASD in their care. 

Our presenters

Dr André McLachlan Ngāti Apa (Ngāti Kauae), Muaūpoko (Ngāti Pāriri) is a clinical psychologist and certified addictions counsellor who has worked in youth services and mental health and who continues to develop pioneering methods of engaging with whānau with complex needs. André and his partner Sarah-Jane McLachlan, a teacher, have lived experience of tamariki with FASD in their care.

Diana Kawana (Ngā Wairiki) is currently employed at Te Puni Kōkiri as a Regional Coordinator, and has 14 years working alongside Watene Māori residing in Palmerston North. Passionate about the betterment of hapū, iwi and Māori organisations, Diana has worked in education for Te Wananga o Aotearoa and is a member of other governance boards. Her children and mokopuna have come through Te Kōhanga Reo and Kura Kaupapa o Mana Tamariki advocating for the revitalisation of Te Reo Māori.  She has lived experience around challenges faced while raising a tamaiti with FASD over the last 14 years. 

Hine Te Arorangi has grown up in Te Ao Māori, tikanga and Te Reo Māori. She has a degree in psychology and is working closely with a member of her own extended whānau with FASD.

Kiri Key (Te Arawa, Te Rarawa, Ngaati Maru, Ngaati Paoa and Savai’i Samoa) is a kaiwhakaako of te reo Māori and tikanga with lived experience of what works in schools for tamariki Māori experiencing neurodiversity. Her holistic approach is based on both her personal experience and her years as a teacher. 




PATH: Planning Alternative Tomorrows with Hope – a tool for change

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

The PATH planning tool helps individuals and whānau to think about where they are in terms of their unique attributes and strengths, their current goals and dreams and their aspirations for the future. It is a visual tool that used pictures or graphics instead of words to help people develop an alternative way of figuring out what they want to achieve.

The process can be used to define life direction, design a building, or organise a community – it just happens to work really well for neurodiverse and those with FASD (and their whānau) figure out what they want their future to look like. PATH begins with questions: what is it that you hope for? What is the dream you have for your life? What gift to you want to be bringing to the world? What gives your life direction and meaning?

Our presenters

Tania Henderson was trained in PATH facilitation by Kataraina Pipi who first brought PATH to Aotearoa. Tania has delivered education on FASD in multiple workshops and courses such as within the Tikanga Mātua Te Ao Māori Parenting Programme and workshops in schools for those working with FASD tamariki. Tania has contributed to the Northern Region FASD Strategic Plan and to the development of the NZ National FASD Training Tool (developed by Te Pou o te Whakaaro Nui) to ensure it included tikanga practices, and she subsequently ran the first of the Frontline Professional FASD Training Tool workshops. Tania was part of the panel which fed back to the Government on the 2016-2019 NZ FASD National Strategic Plan and is a board member of FASD-CAN. 

Kiri Key joins us from Tāmaki Makaurau to provide some insight into what works in schools for tamariki Māori experiencing neurodiversity. She brings a holistic view based on both her personal experience and her years as a teacher. 

Contacts and more info

For more info on facilitating your own PATH, or an individual with FASD you are caring for, contact Tania direct on 020 4106 3000, or email her at [email protected]

If you were inspired by the course to perhaps become a PATH facilitator, courses are offered from time to time by Kataraina Pipi via her business, Path Planning NZ or you could contact Kataraina Pipi direct on 021 589 918 or email [email protected]

• For more information about PATH go to Canadian website Inclusion – this site references the inventors of PATH, Marsha Forest, Jack Pearpoint and John O’Brien, who wrote the first PATH handbook in 1995.




Focus on Justice: FASD in Youth Court – 13 June 2022

Click on the Play button below to start the recording.

There is a well-documented over-representation of rangatahi with FASD within our courts and prisons – some studies in Canada and Australia have shown that the figure may be well over 30% and it will be similar here, if not worse.

A combination of issues including impulsivity, eagerness to please, lack of judgement and recklessness, difficulties with language and communication can all contribute to teens and young adults with FASD getting into trouble. Once involved in the justice system, there are high risks to effective participation for those with FASD. Equipping those in the justice sector to understand and support neurodiversity is required.

There is a new shift in NZ Youth Court which has seen a pilot scheme at the Porirua Youth Court running since 2020. This programme, which is about ensuring young people with neurodiversities who find themselves in court know what's going on and if necessary have a communication assistant. There's more information about the pilot scheme here

Resources from the webinar

The Talking Trouble website has many great resources for both the justice sector and caregivers, whānau and individuals with FASD. Sally Kedge has kindly allowed us to pass on her slides, and also mentioned some other specific resources in the webinar.

• To check out Sally's slides from the webinar, click here.

• The Youth Voices report, animation and 'Communication Postcards' 

These resources are the result of a research study done in 2017 which 'gave young people the opportunity to tell us about their experiences of communication within the youth justice sector in New Zealand. They were encouraged to say what they think the youth justice workforce can do differently to make it easier for young people to participate in all the conversations and processes involved.' There is a report, an animation created by students at the NZ Animation College, and a set of cards which are helpful for justice workers to think about how they are interacting with a young person who may have communication difficulties. 

• A report for Kingslea School after interviewing rangatahi at a youth justice residence.

• A report on the language of Protection Orders: hearing people’s experiences of the communication involved in protection orders.

Resources on our website

• Click here for professional justice resources

• Click here for caregiver and whānau justice resources


Judge Tony Fitzgerald

Our host for this webinar, FASD-CAN patron Judge Fitzgerald, has been a District Court Judge for 22 years and spends about half his time in the Youth Court. Judge Fitzgerald has spoken on justice issues around FASD both here and overseas many times. 

Kesia Sherwood

After completing a law degree at Otago University, Kesia went straight into postgraduate study. Her PhD thesis focused on young people with FASD and New Zealand's youth justice system (read Kesia's thesis abstract here). Since completing her PhD she has been working as a defence lawyer for the Public Defence Service in Wellington. She’s in the Porirua team and the majority of her court work is in Porirua, with a substantial amount in the Young Adult List on Friday mornings. She has two young children who keep her busy on the days that she is not working.

Sally Kedge

Sally is a speech-language therapist and court-appointed Communication Assistant. She is the Director of a social enterprise, Talking Trouble Aotearoa NZ, which is concerned with addressing the speech, language and communication needs of people involved with justice, care and protection, mental health and behaviour services. Her work as a Communication Assistant has involved many people with FASD and she has assisted in trials in the Youth, District and High Court and in other settings like Police interviews, Parole Board and Family Group Conferences. Sally has worked in the UK and New Zealand as a speech-language therapist for 24 years, has been involved in research and clinical education at The University of Auckland and is an Honorary Academic there. She is an Expert Advisor to the New Zealand Speech-Language Therapists' Association and in 2022 she will be one of twenty inaugural international Fellows at the Fair Access to Justice Hub Institute.