The Keyhole® Rainbow Resource Kit: meeting the needs of parents of newly diagnosed preschoolers with ASD

A resource kit containing information booklets about ASD, selected toys and
playthings, and communication aids was developed and evaluated with 29
volunteer mothers supported by service personnel who visited on an average of six
occasions. A mix of qualitative and quantitative methodologies was used in the
evaluation. Nearly all mothers found the kit helpful to their child, to them
personally, and to some extent to the wider family. On post-testing, mothers
reported that the child had fewer problems relating to play as a result of using the
kit. The child’s relationships with others and difficulties with imitation had also
improved. Mothers felt less stressed in their interactions with the child. On
average, the mothers had received around 10 hours of home-based support and the
costs of the kits were also modest. This approach offers a value-for-money,
practical approach to meeting the needs of families awaiting diagnosis and those
who have recently been diagnosed.