As well as being the Founder of My Special Child & Co-Founder of National PEKE Centre, Rebecca Perkins is also a Writer, Presenter and Trainer in the field of Neurodiversity. Most importantly Rebecca is Mum to two boys who both have ADHD and one of which also has an intellectual disability. Rebecca herself also has diagnosed ADHD.
Rebecca has written hundreds of articles, books and guides and has provided support to parents and educators all over the world. Rebecca has featured in countless magazines, newspapers and radio shows as well as presenting a full length DVD Documentary. Rebecca has also worked along side many incredible organisations, including consulting to Special Olympics Australia. Rebecca has numerous qualifications including Sociology and Psychology as well as a Law degree with Honours.
Rebecca is our 2020 AusMumpreneur VIC-TAS Service Business gold award winner.
When did you start your business?
What was the inspiration behind starting this business?
My business was inspired by my eldest son Lachlan, because Lachlan is ‘my special child’. Lachlan is the most amazing, kind, loving and wonderful child but life can be incredibly difficult for him as he struggles with severe ADHD and an Intellectual Disability, meaning that even though Lachlan is 14 years old, he only has a mental age of around 7 – 8 years. As a mum to a Neurodivergent as well as having ADHD and Dyslexia myself, I was very frustrated with the lack of information and support available to parents. So in 2015 I decided if there wasn’t enough out there it was up to me to create it. And so I began My Special Child, and have been building and developing it ever since.
What are you most excited about in your business?
Our events and services keep getting bigger and bigger and as we now run events throughout Australia it is fantastic to watch the information spread to be able to help more and more people. On top of this, after opening the National PEKE Centre, which I co-founded, early this year. It is really exciting to watch that grow and be able to see the huge level of help and change for families that this is creating within the disability sector.
What has been the most challenging thing about starting your business?
Taking on such a huge challenge and developing something so big whilst caring for two children with disabilities and also having additional needs myself has been incredibly tough. And often I have had to do this with no income especially in the first few years. But the knowledge of growing something so important that helps so many families is what kept me going.
What advice would you give to other women thinking about starting a business?
Do something you love, because it will get tough and when it does the only thing that will keep you going will be your passion.
Why did you enter the AusMumpreneur Awards?
I think that being recognised for your achievements is incredibly motivating, but also to bring attention to the field of disability and to get recognition for people in our community who struggle daily. Having ADHD and Dyslexia myself, it is such a powerful message to send out to the wider Neurodiverse community that people with different brains can achieve anything they want, if I can do it anyone can.
What did you enjoy the most about being part of the awards?
The feeling of comradery and women rejoicing in the success of other women.
What surprised you most about the awards?
That I won.
How did the awards help you in your business?
It has opened many doors as well as created a great deal of media and community attention, which in turn has helped to grow and further develop the business. The biggest development that has come from the awards I am not as yet allowed to talk about as I have signed an NDA but I can’t wait to let everyone in on that.
What advice would you give to others mums thinking about entering the awards?
They definitely should enter as it is a fantastic experience, but most importantly network as much as possible, throw yourself into the event fully and just enjoy it.
What has been the best thing about starting your own business?
To date I have been able to help tens of thousands people around the world and make a real difference to peoples lives. I look forward to tens of thousands growing to millions.
What’s happening next in your business?
We are now in the middle of our national ADHD and Demand Avoidance tour, we also have the Victorian ADHD Conference and Queensland ADHD Conference coming soon. Our centre (National PEKE Centre) is looking to expand to a second centre within the next 12 months. And of course there is that thing that I can’t talk about yet, but will do as soon as I’m allowed.
What are your big plans for the future?
We are currently planning to take the ADHD Conferences to all the other States in 2022 and 2023 as well as developing other new events and doing a second tour to include New Zealand. National PEKE Centre will be opening in Melbourne’s west in the next 12 months (currently in Cranbourne) followed shortly by another 3 centres and then looking to franchise them beyond that.
SAVE THE DATE – 2021 AUSMUMPRENEUR AWARDS!
Nominations open Monday 3 May 2021.
AusMumpreneur Awards Nights 8-10 September 2021
Conference and Awards Presentation 14-16 September 2021.
>> Join the Waitlist here <<