5 Jul 2022
Nevaeh, 12, who is autistic, dyslexic and epileptic, has been gaining praise for her talent since the age of seven when she first began singing professionally. She was chosen as the support act for X Factor winner Sam Bailey’s south coast tour and has continued performing since.
This year, she has been selected to perform at the prestigious annual ‘Autism’s Got Talent 2022’ event and was recently announced as the Youngstars South of England 'Young Solo Vocalist of the Year'.
In March 2022, we invited her to perform at the opening of our new autism assessment and diagnosis facility, The Chris Page Centre.
She stunned the audience with her talent, and her performance led to us inviting her to become our first child ambassador.
Nevaeh said: ‘I was really pleased to sing at the Chris Page Centre launch and really honoured when the charity asked me to become a child ambassador.'
People are often surprised when they find out she is autistic, saying: “No! I don't believe that.”
She adds: ‘But I think my autism is part of the reason why I’m good at singing – it gives me a good ear for a lot of things.
‘When listening back to my music, I notice little things that need changing which most people would typically overlook.
‘Autism Unlimited believes autistic children can succeed in life and works with hundreds of children every year so they can reach their full potential.’
She doesn’t view her autism as a barrier either – it doesn’t stop her from pursuing her passion for singing.
She continues: ‘It’s an ‘extra’ which means I’m not just in the crowd – it makes me stand out and more individual and unique than everyone else and I want to help other autistic people feel that way too.’
Her mum, Michaela Simkins, said: ‘When Nevaeh received her formal diagnosis for autism, I was relieved.
‘No longer would she have to pretend to be ok, make excuses, feel uncomfortable or struggle with masking her sensory issues and emotions.
‘From that day forward I was determined to support Nevaeh in accessing and achieving all her personal goals.
‘We agreed that autism wouldn't stop her from doing anything, it would just make the journey more of an adventure.
‘I am very proud of Nevaeh and her dedication to supporting others is without a doubt very important to her.’
Her determination and drive will be a valuable addition to our charity and we are really excited to be working with her.