Autistic girl from Kingsbury has poetry published in special exhibition

Yasmin Latif has Asperger's syndrome, whose poem Who Are We was included in an event in Old Street

Yasmin Latif has Asperger's syndrome, whose poem Who Are We was included in an event in Old Street - Credit: Archant

A 12-year-old girl from Kingsbury saw her poetry showcased as part of an exhibition to raise awareness about autism and Aspergers Syndrome.

Yasmin Latif

Yasmin Latif - Credit: Archant

Yasmin Latif’s poem, Who Are We, was part of an event in Old Street tube station last week featuring interactive exhibitions, experiments and displays to show the different ways in which people’s brains function.

It was the first major exhibition for Yasmin, who has Aspergers Syndrome and who has previously been involved with Brent Outreach Autism Team (BOAT) and her poetry on display at Ealing Road Library in Wembley.

She said: “[The exhibition] felt wonderful. I was just amazed. I didn’t think I’d get that many people wanting my poems. I enjoy expressing myself through my poetry, my feelings.

“It’s so easy. It takes maximum half an hour, two minutes if it’s a short one.”

Yasmin, who lives in Church Lane and is homeschooled after problems with main stream education, said she doesn’t see her condition as any kind of barrier. “I love geography. Just looking at my geography book and learning about things do with the land, I find it really interesting. But subjects like history; I’m not interested at all.”

She added: “I don’t actually believe I’m diagnosed with Aspergers. I don’t see it as any issue. I don’t mind what other people think.”

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Asperger’s Syndrome is an autistic spectrum disorder (ASD), Children with the condition tend to be bright and academically very able, and their social difficulties can often be misunderstood.

Her mother Margaret Dillane said Yasmin is also epileptic and is often “in and out of hospital”: “A lot of people have been negative towards her because of her behaviour, which comes out in her poetry. This is a reason we did this fundraising event, to raise awareness and say we’re all different, we all think differently, we all act differently. Austism needs to be seen as that way of life, not a condition, a way of life - our frustrations, our anxieties and what we do to release those.”

The event was organised by Tait Studio and supported by the National Autistic Society.

To learn more about services in Brent for young people with a diagnosis on the autism spectrum, visit brent.gov.uk/boat, email boat@brent.gov.uk or call 020 8937 4659.

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