I am sitting here preparing for “The Saturday Night Show”, which I will be appearing on this evening, and wanted to write a short blog to welcome any users who hear about our organisation for the first time, this evening, and ask you to get involved in our work in building a more inclusive, understanding Ireland for those with the condition.

Our aim, is that this website will be a real, vibrant community, and a central hub, for those with Autism, their families and professional supporters. Additionally, by providing the community with a platform and a voice, we hope to reach out to various sectors of society in an effort to educate the public about the condition. Of course, we can’t do this alone!

We want this organisation to speak for the community and, for that to be the case, we need your voice too!

If you are affected by Autism, we hope you enjoy browsing the website, learning about our work to date, seeing our surveys and forms for work we are preparing to undertake and hopefully leaving with a new sense of hope, knowledge and excitement for the future.

If you are a member of the public who wants to understand Autism more, we hope you find this website to be an accessible and useful resource and we urge you to play your part in making our society more understanding of a condition that affects around 1 in 100 of our population in Ireland.

We hope visitors will also consider how they can join us in this journey, there are many ways to get involved including:

1) Register as a User: Our site allows you to register a profile, this gives you your own page and everything is centralised into one log-in name and password. In other words, through registration you not only get a personal profile which you can update, join groups and post information but you will also be able to post comments, write on the forum, submit events and lots more!

2) Register your Support Group: If you are involved in a support group why turn down a free webpage? Our site allows you to get a free profile to prom0te the work of your group. Through this group, potential members can find out about your work and you can interact with other support groups, bringing some much needed joint-up thinking! Additionally, you will be able to advertise events and information on the site and we will also be pulling some of this information on to our own front page!

3) Contribute content: Would you like to write, draw, video or photograph your experiences, work, something of interest to users? See the various ways you can contribute content here.

4) Complete our surveys and forms: We survey and involve the community in developing all our resources and projects. Are you an adult or family member of an adult, with Autism, seeking employment? Fill out our survey here/

Are you a business, organisation or service provider working with people with Autism or with an Autism-friendly ethos? Register for our map here.

5) Make a donation to our work: Do you have limited time but would like to make a contribution? Visit our Donations page where all support, big an small, is greatly appreciated.

6) Enquire about becoming an AsIAm Liaison Officer: Do you think you could play a leadership role in promoting AsIAm in your locality? Learn how you can become a Liaison Officer here.

7) Volunteer to become an AsIAm School Speaker or book a talk for your school: Do you have Autism? Have a family member with Autism? Work professionally with someone with Autism? Do you want more young people to understand the condition, and respect diversity? Then please consider volunteering as an AsIAm School Speaker here

Would you like an AsIAm School talk in your Secondary School? Enquire here

8) Got a better idea? Would you like to help in a different way? Think we are missing something? Then please do Contact us – we would love to hear from you!

Thanks for reading guys! I hope this will be the first of many visits and that, together, we will change Ireland for those with Autism!