THE founder and chair of Fremantle-based Spectrum Space has been awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) in this year’s Australia Day honours.
Silvana Gaglia has been advocating for the people with autism and their families since her son Julian’s diagnosis in 1999, which led her to create Autism West in 2008.
Now rebranded Spectrum Space and based in Fremantle Hospital, the not-for-profit provides life-changing services to children, teens and young adults.
It offers social groups around the metro area which help autistic teens and adults strengthen their independence skills in a natural environment, making them more confident and work ready.
In 2016 Ms Gaglia was also the recipient of an Impact 25 Award, which recognises the movers and shakers in Australia’s social sector.
Spectrum Space CEO Helene Hanson described the founder as humble and unassuming despite the difference she’d made to so many lives.
“She leads with humility and is driven to build a strong community where people with autism are engaged, challenged and motivated to live a meaningful and happy life,” Ms Hansen said.
“Her vision, energy and passion backed up by her strong values has inspired others to engage with Spectrum Space, which has made it the strong community organisation it is today.”