Mrs ALC D.A.O & D.T.O
The founding mother
In 1953, after obtaining a Diploma of Australian Orthoptics (D.A.O.), Mrs. ALC practiced orthoptics at the Royal Children’s Hospital, Camperdown, where, two years later she became head of the orthoptic clinic. In 1954, she was invited to be a member of the orthoptic clinic at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney, and later, at the Royal North Shore Medical Centre at St. Leonards. To gain overseas experience, Mrs. Lawson went to England in 1959, and was invited to join the Queen Elizabeth Hospital for Children, London, and later, alternated between that orthoptic clinic, the Royal County Hospital in Surrey, St Lukes Hospital, and Guildford. For some time Mrs. Lawson was also in private practice with several leading ophthalmologists in England.
In 1964, Mrs. Lawson returned to Australia, taking further courses, including that of Tutor Orthoptist, which qualified her to teach and train orthoptists.
Mrs. Lawson accepted the position of head orthoptist with a group of seven eye surgeons in Parramatta, which she combined with a private practice in Gosford. During this time, she specialised with children who had learning problems and made extensive research into the visual cortex.
In April of 1979, Mrs. Lawson patented a machine known as the Lawson Anti-Suppression Device (LASD), which was used for the treatment of amblyopia.
Mrs Maria Thomas
The founding daughter
Mrs Lawson’s daughter Maria Thomas continues the valuable work of her mother. Having originally operated from a centre based in Wyong, she now manages the Head Office in Moss Vale. Having worked alongside her mother for a number of years, she is also qualified to train up staff at new centres around the globe.
ALC – UK continues the invaluable work of Mrs ALC, who has devoted her life to researching and finding a successful treatment for visual dyslexia.
Staff at the ALC are all dedicated individuals who have experienced the problems and difficulties associated with learning difficulties or dyslexia first-hand. This is one of our most important and relevant qualifications that all staff in the Centre must have. It is relevant because those individuals who have to cope with dyslexia know it is hard to explain the day to day problems they experience and the impact these have on their lives with someone who has never endured these issues themselves. All staff have been DBS checked and approved.
Mrs Jo Shedden
“The first thing we noticed was the dramatic drop in frustration and anxiety levels. This was something we did not expect, but it became clear to us that when your eyes aren’t conveying correct messages to the brain, it is hard to understand things and when we don’t understand we become anxious and frustrated. We also noticed a willingness to read, whereas before it was often “Tell me what it says.” Confidence rose considerably as well. I can honestly say that nothing else we have tried made as significant a difference as the ALC program.”
Mrs Shedden worked as a Teaching Assistant in private secondary schools for several years, before becoming officially trained in 2006 and going on to spend 5 days a week at a local private primary school working closely with and gaining the trust of children with learning difficulties. Prior to this she was also involved in one-to-one tuition for primary and secondary students with learning difficulties. Through all this she was consciously aware that her work was not releasing the full potential of those worked with.
In February 2012 Mrs Shedden was in Australia visiting family. Here she heard about the many success stories of those who had taken the ALC treatment. With a dyslexic child of her own and having tried many different treatments, she was still willing to try anything that might help. After researching a large number of contacts across Australia who had undergone the treatment and all had proved benefit in varying ways, she was convinced it was definitely worth a try.
Mrs Shedden found the treatments so life changing that she was inspired to continue the work of Mrs Alison Lawson so that others too could benefit from the same positive changes of the treatment program. She was trained in the application of the ALC technology in July 2012.
Admin & Financial Management
“It’s hugely rewarding to see the difference in persons from the first day they come into the centre when they drag themselves in, to when they leave at the end full of confidence and motivation!”
James’s degree in accounts & economics puts him in a great position to head up our administration and financial management sector of the centre. Ensuring we are there for you when you need us. His many years of experience in managing commercial enterprises is invaluable to making wise decisions.
Having first-hand experience with the struggles of his own dyslexic children, James makes a very sympathetic listener. He also loves to welcome visitors to the centre, often greeting them with words of enthusiasm and motivation.
Being Mrs Jo Shedden’s husband, the background to why the ALC-UK exists, is very close to James’s heart and he’ll willingly share this with you if you ask him.
“Talking with the users of our program is really affecting. Everyone has been through similar-but-different struggles and seeing them come out the other side of the dark tunnel is so uplifting. Having been there, done that and got the t shirt – you know the real impact it makes on daily life. So my mission is to get the word out there, and ensure we have a much happier dyslexic population here in the Northern Hemisphere.”
Jessie uses her dyslexia to advantage by harnessing her creative thinking. She works tirelessly to bring you amazing true stories of how the ALC program has changed lives and loves capturing these on video.
Being dyslexic and being someone who loves relating to others, means that Jessie really understands the challenges you are struggling with and enables her to see things through your eyes.