AsIAm.ie aims to provide a one-stop shop for the Autism community in Ireland. From providing the public and those with the condition to a portal of information about Autism, to serving a platform for people affected by Autism to share their stories and views, to providing a strong voice for the concerns of the community – AsIAm.ie has it all!
Some of the regular readers to my blog will know that my son Jono has Asperger’s Syndrome. I don’t write about it much now that he’s older and things certainly got easier when he left school. It strikes me that with certain schools and learning establishments unless you fit in with their way of thinking it’s always going to be an uphill battle. Things need to change and I was delighted when I heard Adam from AsIAm.ie speaking so clearly and confidently on local radio. Jono was keen to find out more about the organisation so he went along to one of their meetings. He was very impressed by the young people who attended the meeting and what they had to say.
In Jono’s case because he was ‘different’ and there was no support for him he left school early. He went on to the National Learning Network but in Sligo anyway all the various people with various disabilities were in the same class. Jono found this very stressful as he felt he had to look after some of the others. He also felt there was little in the course to interest him. We’ve found that classes for people with disabilities tend to involve gardening or sport, both of which are out for Jono because of his spinal problems. Or art comes up a lot which Jono doesn’t like. The people in authority don’t seem to think about people with disabilities as individuals – they like to put them all in the same ‘box’.
With AsIAm it’s looking like this will start to change and I really hope it does. There is a National Autism Conference taking place in Dublin Castle on April 16th, 2016. You can find out more about it here. Use #asiamconf16 to keep in touch with events.
Adam is such an inspiration. Your post definitely raises something that is a massive problem for people who are different (but in lots of ways!) being put in the same box after they leave school. There is nothing for them from the state once they turn 18. We have 3 aspies here and I am positive that their future is bright, especially with people like Adam making such a difference for awareness and acceptance for all.
Adam is great and hopefully he will make a big difference.