April is National Autism Awareness month and is internationally recognised as a time to raise awareness about Autism. You may surprised to learn that over 1% of the UK population may have Autism or related disabilities like Asperger's and High-functioning Autism. According to the National Autistic Society that equates to about 70,000 people, or 1 in 100 people. You can read more interesting facts about Autism on the National Autistic Society website.
We know that Autism affects how people make sense of the world around them. It is a spectrum condition which means it will affect people differently and in varying degrees. Autism awareness is important because Autism is described as a hidden disability which means it is not an immediately obvious disability. It is a life long disability that can significantly affect individuals and their families.
Top 10 Autism websites in the UK
We've curated these websites so you can find the information and support you need.
1. The National Autistic Society
The leading voice on Autism in the UK. It aims to increase understanding and awareness of Autism and ensure people with Autism live the lives they choose. It is a fantastic and up to date resource. See website, like on Facebook and follow on Twitter.
2. Talk about Autism
An online community and forum for people interested in Autism to share experiences, get support and discuss Autism. It is a popular site used by family members, professionals and people with Autism. See website, like on Facebook, follow on Twitter.
3. Autism Education Trust
This organisation works towards ensuring children, young people and adults with Autism receive the education they need to enable them to reach their individual potential. Their post 16 programme is most relevant to adults with Autism. View website, like on Facebook, follow on Twitter.
4. The Autism Research Centre
Based at the University of Cambridge, it is a hub for scientists working on Autism. It also works closely with clinical and voluntary sector services. Visit the site for the latest research and publications on Autism. See website.
5. Research Autism
The only UK charity that is exclusively dedicated to research into interventions in Autism. An intervention is a treatment, therapy or service designed to improve the quality of life of someone with Autism. Visit the site for a detailed information on interventions and quality research and publications. See website, like on Facebook, follow on Twitter.
Helps to fund pioneering medical research on Autism, helping to improve diagnosis, and develop new treatments and interventions. Visit the site for a broad range of Autism research topics and information. See website, like on Facebook, follow on Twitter.
7. Treating Autism
A volunteer run UK charity that focuses on improving the quality of life of people with Autism. It focuses on biomedical treatment of Autism and has a range of useful resources. See website, like on Facebook, follow on Twitter.
8. Autism Alliance
A central organisation for specialist Autism charities in the UK. Their alliance members section is a great resource, linking you to Autism charities across the UK. They help to influence regional and national Autism policy and promote the entitlement of people with Autism to receive the specialist support they need. See website, like on Facebook.
9. NHS Living with Autism
The NHS Living with Autism resource that includes information on diagnosis for children and adults, transitions, Autism related support and real life stories. See website.
10. Autism Pathway Tool
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence provides an interactive Autism Pathway tool for health and social care professionals. It covers clinical guidelines, technology appraisals, public health and social care advice, quality standards and implementation tools. This useful web of Autism related information will help give further insight into Autism. See website.
Activities for 2014 Autism Awareness month in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, Norfolk and Lincolnshire
On World Autism Day staff and service users came together in blue! Many of the following activities were organised by the people we support.
- We've all worn blue clothes and eaten a lot of blue food (pictured)!
- An Autism Fact Day was organised to help raise awareness about Autism internally. Since we support adults with a range of learning disabilities this is an opportunity to get service users with different needs talking about Autism.
- A blue themed afternoon tea party also took place, perfectly timed in the lovely warm weather we've had.
- A large Autism ribbon has been made and coins are being collected all month for Autism UK (pictured).
- A game of bingo took place and all prizes were blue of course!
- A blue themed Autism Awareness month garden party, complete with blue balloons took place on the first weekend of April. An Autism cushion was made by Lindsay and will be auctioned off at the garden party. Funds raised will be donated to Autism UK.
Do let us know if you have any other useful Autism website suggestions and share what you got up to for Autism Awareness Day and National Autism Awareness month..