Federação Portuguesa de Autismo2018-12-17T11:11:49+00:00

Project Description

Federação Portuguesa de Autismo – FPDA


FPDA – Portuguese Federation for Autism is a non-profit NGO PD (Non-Governmental Organization for Persons with Disability) registered under the Portuguese law in 2003/2004. It replaced a national NGO that was founded in 1971. FPDA includes 12 NGOs all over the country and in the islands.

FPDA is under the umbrella of the National Institute for Rehabilitation (INR,I. P) that belongs to the Ministry of Social Welfare. The Statutes of FPDA are approved by the Ministry of Social Welfare and registered in the Portal da Justiça (Platform of the Ministry of Justice).

The responsible by FPDA are: the Congress (it is the name of the General Assembly) that elects every 4 years, among its members, the Executive Council and the Financial Council.

The members of the Congress are the delegates elected in representation of the 12 association members of FPDA.

The five members of the Executive Council run the federation and present the reports and planning to the approval of the Ministry of Social Welfare after being approved by the Congress.

The Financial Council writes one overview on the administration of the Executive Council and also presents it with the reports.

Staff involved

Isabel Cottinelli
Isabel CottinelliPresident of the Portuguese Federation for Autism and former President of APPDA-Lisboa
Autism-Europe Vice President for 18 years, President of the Portuguese Federation for Autism and former President of APPDA-Lisboa ; member of the board of the Confederation for Intellectual Disabilities and of National Confederation of Disability Organisations and member of CMIPD (City Council of Lisbon for Inclusion); Commissioner of the Ministry of Education for Resources Centres for Inclusion (CRI).
Master in Education (Boston University) PhD in Architecture (University of Lisbon).
Teacher in post-graduation courses in Universidade Nova, University of Azores, University of Porto, School of Education in Setúbal.
Lectures in Portugal, France, Italy, UK, USA (New York University) and in Cabo Verde.
Teacher in post-graduation courses in Universidade Nova, University of Azores, University of Porto, School of Education in Setúbal.
Former editor of LINK Magazine and Autism: Research and Practice (Sage Public.)
Decoration by the President of Republic of Portugal: Grande Cavaleiro da Ordem da Instrução Pública.
Speaks Portuguese, English and French.
Inês Neto
Inês NetoPsychomotrician and speaker
Inês is graduated in Psychomotor Rehabilitation, Faculty of Human Motricity in 2007.
She completed her curricular traineeship at the Psychiatric Hospital Center of Lisbon in the ward of chronically ill men for users aged between 18 and 75 years, with a heterogeneous diagnosis (schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism spectrum disorder, oligofrenia, etc).
Since 2007, she has been working in the Vocational Training Unit of the Psychiatric Hospital Center of Lisbon as a teacher of the modules “Sport and Leisure” and “Strategies for Active Social Participation”. This Training Unit is intended for people who have a history of mental illness and who are trying to return to an independent life and enter the job market.
She has been working in the Portuguese Association for Developmental Disorders and Autism of Lisbon (APPDA-Lisboa) since April 2008, having started her career as a Psychomotrician at the Center for Occupational Activities. From September 2008 onwards, she worked mainly in schools through APPDA-Lisboa’s Resource Center for Inclusion (CRI), targeting children and young people aged 6 to 18 with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Over the years she has participated as a speaker in several seminars at APPDA-Lisboa, the Portuguese Autism Federation and APPDA-Setúbal.
Rita Serpa Soares
Rita Serpa SoaresClinical Psychologist
Rita Soares is specialized in the Clinical evaluation and treatment of neurodevelopmental disorders and Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD).She has large clinical experience, also in inclusion settings, namely schools and the labor market.
She has large experience in training teachers, other professionals and families and in collaborating with prestigious health and education institutions.
She participated in numerous national and European projects and work experiences.
She has been consultant and trainer in different organizations or units for people with disabilities (ex: Açores; Brussels; Macau, China).
She has coordinated clinical services and projects and recently was pedagogical director of APPDA-Lisboa, the Portuguese Association for Autism and Development Disorders.

Rita Soares is Graduated in Psychology at the University of Lisbon in 1998. During University, she spent a semester at Padua’s University, in Italy. She was trainee at the University Hospital of Tours, Service des Explorations Fonctionelles, for children with developmental disorders from 1999 to 2000. She has been participating in different seminars and congresses in neurodevelopment, special education needs, and psychology.
Presently, attends the last training stage – supervision – for Adult Psychotherapy, at the Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Portuguese Association.