Creatovators was set up after our founder’s son received a diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome. When seeking out help and advice, June Grindley discovered there was very little available and set out on a quest to change this. With encouragement from other families who had children on the spectrum and whilst studying for an MSc in Autism, she established the Social Enterprise.
On paper, our amazing team includes 3 directors, 22 volunteers and 1 high school apprentice. Those who use our services are also an integral part of this great team, as we all support, encourage and learn from each other.
June Grindley MSc
Founder, Director and Senior Autism Practitioner
June Grindley began working with people on the autistic spectrum in 1998 and her son has a diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome. With a background in Listening, Business, and Training, she added to her skills by completing an MSc in Autism in 2013. During this time, she extensively studied what was known as Lego®-based Therapy and became one of the first people to introduce it to Scotland. With her blend of personal and professional experience, June has a unique insight into supporting those on the spectrum and their families. With her business and training background, she’s able to educate professionals in all walks of life about supporting people on the spectrum.
Jacqueline Patrick has a wealth of knowledge and understanding of the issues and challenges faced by families with children on the Autistic Spectrum. From the outset of her own children’s first autism assessment, Jacqueline threw herself into every parent training event and support group available. She learned how to navigate the often complex pathways and systems that families confront when dealing with assessments and diagnoses. Through her sustained involvement with local groups, Jacqueline has used her experiences to guide other families through difficulties with education, medical help and welfare benefits, all while providing much needed practical and emotional support.
Combining these abilities with an abundance of professional experience in Social Care Administration, Youth Work, Education and the multifaceted Social Housing Sector, Jacqueline brings a unique skill set to the organisation. One that can assist it to continue in its growth and expansion.
Dr David Simmons
Dr David Simmons is a lecturer in Psychology at the University of Glasgow. Having originally trained in physics and physiology, he made the study of human visual perception his main focus until about 15 years ago when a series of events drew him to become interested in autism. Since then he has become a leading world authority on sensory and perceptual aspects of autism, publishing highly cited papers in the field and acting as an adviser to organisations such as the Scottish Government, Scottish Autism, and the Adult Autism Spectrum Cohort project. He frequently presents his research, and that of his many students, to both academic and wider audiences. He also teaches a popular course on autism at the University of Glasgow and is a supporter of other local organisations like The Sporting Aces. You can find more detail of his biography on https://www.gla.ac.uk/schools/psychology/staff/davidsimmons or follow him on twitter @DrDavidRSimmons.
Milly Middleton joined the team in October 2023, having previously volunteered with us throughout her studies at University of Glasgow. She graduated in July with a 2:1 BSc in Psychology with a neuroscience specialism. Milly grew up with an older brother who received an Asperger’s Diagnosis in 2001, and as such has invaluable lived experience and a slightly different insight into how autism can affect families. She is committed to improving the experience of families and offering as much support as she can. As well as working for us, Milly also works for the East Dunbartonshire Council’s Outreach team which provides activity and social groups for adults on the spectrum and/or with learning disabilities.
Milly is responsible for the three monthly playschemes (Bearsden, Kirkintilloch and Bishopbriggs) as well as the Buildovator Lego-based sessions and lots of behind the scenes work! If you need her, contact her on :
From Humble Beginnings...
Starting small June began to help individual clients by using their interests to teach them social skills. She found that tailoring each programme to their interests and needs led them to make significant progress.
Parents expressed a desperate need for a safe, inclusive environment where their children could play and they could receive support. With help and backing from one of the local churches, along with the parents, a Play Scheme was formed for the whole family to attend.
During her MSc in Autism, June studied a new therapeutic intervention using Lego®, now known as Lego®-based Therapy. She undertook in-depth research into this technique and began to use it within the organisation, thereby being one of the first people to use it in this country.
... To Where We Are Now
Having supported many people through our activities, we’re seeing the fruit of our labour. Some of our participants have moved on to being volunteers, supporting new participants, particularly within our Playscheme and Buildovators Sessions.
Using the wealth of experience and knowledge we have built, we now offer training workshops. Autism Awareness Training, focusing on the positives, is undertaken with organisations and companies. Some of those we partnered with include the Young Workforce, Tesco and a local archery club, ‘Clyde Arrows’.
We conduct Lego®-based Therapy Training for schools, education authorities, professionals, groups and parents. For example, we have run a workshop for East Dunbartonshire during a Festival of Celebration organised by their Local Area Coordinators.
We have links with other organisations in the field including Scottish Autism and the School of Psychology and Neuroscience in Glasgow University. This enables us to keep up-to-date with relevant discoveries which we feed into our services.
Built on a foundation of listening to those on the autistic spectrum and their parents, we continue to adapt and all the feedback we have received so far has been helpful and positive.