Respect. Accept. Embrace. Empower.

Our story

Dr Melanie Heyworth founded Reframing Autism in 2017. At the time, she was working as a peer facilitator for an early childhood intervention organisation, Plumtree Children’s Services (Plumtree), in Marrickville in Sydney’s Inner West.

In her work with Plumtree, Melanie recognised that many parents of newly identified Autistic children could benefit from hearing from Autistic adults directly and needed to be able to access the Autistic community.

Reframing Autism’s first workshop had eight families. It grew quickly to fifty families.

Then, in 2019, the NDIS awarded Reframing Autism a grant that supported us to become an independent organisation. We formed an Australian Public Company, Limited by Guarantee. We are a registered charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC) and have Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status.

Our successes with this initial funding were evidenced by the news in late 2019 that we had secured another NDIS grant, this time for another three years. We have grown swiftly since our inception, and we are so excited to be working towards positive change for the Autistic community in Australia and globally.

For further information on how your organisation can collaborate or partner with Reframing Autism and support our vision for the Autistic community, please contact Stacey Kirtley (Community Relations Coordinator).

You can learn more about the evolution of Reframing Autism, and why we do what we do, by listening to the first episode of our Amplified podcast series.

Meet our team

  • Dr Melanie Heyworth

    Dr Melanie Heyworth

    CEO and Founder
  • Sharon Fraser

    Sharon Fraser

    Business Manager
  • Sophie Ralston

    Sophie Ralston

    Program Manager
  • Ginny Grant

    Ginny Grant

    Communications Manager
  • Rebecca Poulsen

    Rebecca Poulsen

    Research Officer
  • Emma Marsh

    Emma Marsh

    Content Producer
  • Stacey Kirtley

    Stacey Kirtley

    Community Relations Coordinator
  • Kimberley Morcom

    Kimberley Morcom

    Administrative Assistant
  • Gerard Atkinson

    Gerard Atkinson

    Chairperson
  • Dr Justine Noble

    Dr Justine Noble

    Director
  • Dr Erin Bulluss

    Dr Erin Bulluss

    Director
  • Tim Chan

    Tim Chan

    Director
  • Yenn Purkis

    Yenn Purkis

    Brand Ambassador

Our collaborations

Celeste Josephine Art was commissioned to create the stunning watercolour and digital artworks that we use at Reframing Autism.

A dreamer at heart, Celeste’s pieces are inspired by the thoughts and feelings swirling around inside her. Celeste describes each piece as a cathartic adventure.

Celeste is an Autistic artist and parent of three Autistic sons who are beautifully, unapologetically unique. Her amazing boys have taught her so much about raw, real love and the importance of self growth and identity.

The flowing colours found throughout Celeste’s work reflect her love of visual vibrancy and contrast.

Celeste’s work explores the fragility and breathtaking beauty of life, the experience of being neurodiverse in a neurotypical world and the overwhelming love of motherhood.

Plumtree is a not-for-profit organisation that provides support for young children aged birth to 8 years old with a developmental delay or disability and their families.

Reframing Disability is a not-for-profit organisation run by and for families of young children with a disability.

Have more questions? They might be answered on our FAQs page.

We invite you to learn more about our work and recent achievements by reading our latest Annual Report and Financial Statements.

Join our community


The Reframing Autism team would like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the lands on which we have the privilege to learn, work, and grow. Whilst we gather on many different parts of this Country, the RA team walk on the land of the Birpai, Gadigal, Darkinjung, Wadawurrung, Jagera, Turrbal, Whadjuk and Southern Yamatji peoples.

We are committed to honouring the rich culture of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples of this Country, and the diversity and learning opportunities they provide us with. We extend our gratitude and respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and to all Elders past, present, and emerging, for their wisdom, their resilience, and for helping this Country to heal.

Always was, always will be Aboriginal land.