Our Origins & Aims

Here at AsIAm, we understand that accessing social inclusion, employment and receiving support as an autistic adult in Ireland can be a challenging and occasionally negative experience. This understanding has only solidified as we come to understand the impact of COVID-19 on autistic adults in Ireland. In response to this awareness, our new Adult Support and Wellbeing Programme adopts a community development approach, striving to support autistic adults to develop self-advocacy and peer support skills and to be included within their communities. We strive to strengthen social relationships and friendships and aid the community to avail of opportunities to become involved in community activities. 

To facilitate this programme, AsIAm sought opinions, experiences and testimonies from autistic adults, as well as parents and carers of autistic adults related to social needs, inclusion and opportunities via a nationwide survey. These responses have since informed the building of our new programme, where we now incorporate a mixture of online events and meet-ups, with in-person peer support groups and activities.

We carry out our aims through a variety of informative classes, online social hours and creative activities where we connect the adult autistic community in Ireland through passion, joy and fun! So far, our classes include self-advocacy and resiliency, art and yoga, alongside social groups for women and a thriving book club! These classes, groups and gatherings will only expand throughout the course of the next year where we aim to heavily focus on intersectionality within the adult autistic community. 

Update, April 2022: We are currently in the process of recruiting and training several facilitators for this programme to increase the events that we can offer. Any of the below events that say ‘Register Your Interest’ have not yet begun and are in the process of being formulated due to high demand and feedback from the autistic community.

The programme is coordinated by Jennifer O’Connor, AsIAm’s Adult Support and Wellbeing Programme. More information can be found on our website and Jennifer can be contacted via the following email address; Jennifer@asiam.ie.

This programme is kindly funded by The Eithne and Paddy Memorial Fund. (https://www.fitzpatrickmemorial.org/).

Testimonials from Participants

Since engaging with the Adult Support and Wellbeing Programme, I feel much less isolated.
I have enjoyed taking part in several courses and ongoing programmes which have really enriched my life, I have learned some new skills and found enjoyment in new practices. Also I now feel much more comfortable in myself which, as a late diagnosed adult is a huge benefit.

 

 – Dave, 58

Before I engaged with the Adult Support and Wellbeing Programme, I was unsure how to make sense my late diagnosis. Was this a continuation of being “a fake”? Had I made it up? After the calls, and listening to others experience, I leave with a greater sense of calm about myself.

 

– Sarah, 48

Before I engaged with the Adult Support and Wellbeing Programme, I was overwhelmed and felt misunderstood  Now, I feel like I have that extra bit of support and also as space to just be myself. It has also giving me a bit more confidence to open up to people about being autistic and it helped me come to terms with my very recent diagnosis. Thanks Jennifer and everyone in the group.

– Aisling, 33

Key Reminders:

Book Club

Every Second Week - Wednesday

6pm (Online)

Continuous

Midday Mindfulness Classes

Creative Writing Group

Women's Support Groups

Every second Monday

Every second Friday

Every second Tuesday and Wednesday

12:30pm (Online)

2pm (Online)

6pm (Online)

Running for 6 Weeks

Running for 6 Weeks

Continuous

Men's Peer Support Groups

Transgender & Non-Binary Support Group

Choir Group

Every second Thursday (Online) 6:30PM

2022 Dates TBC
(Online)

2022 Dates TBC
(Online)

Film Club

Gaming Club

Yoga Classes

2022 Dates TBC

2022 Dates TBC

Online - Dates TBC

Using Neurodiversity Affirmative Language Workshop

Art Classes

Women's Health and Autism Webinar

Online - Date TBC

2022 Dates TBC

Online - Date TBC

The Adult Support and Wellbeing Programme is always happy to hear suggestions from the community regarding what groups they would like to see up and running! If you have a suggestion, please share with us in the suggestions box below or at the following email address: jennifer@asiam.ie. 

Suggestions Box

We will do our very best to get back to your suggestion or feedback as quickly as possible. Thank you for taking the time to express your thoughts with us.

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