The buzz around Aylesbury is now so positive and supportive, and we are all extremely hopeful that the expertise available will be beautifully blended to make Aylesbury as accessible and enjoyable for autistic people and their families, just as every person deserves.

 

Felicity Amswych, Branch Chair, NAS Aylesbury Vale Branch

For us an autism-friendly town or city is a place autistic people and their families can call home. It is a place where they feel welcomed, valued and cared for. Where businesses and amenities adapt so that their offering can be enjoyed by those on the spectrum, and autistic people and their families are well supported.

We have started working with towns and cities across the UK to support their efforts to become autism-friendly, helping local businesses and facilities to achieve our Autism Friendly Award. Our volunteers and branches are going out into their communities to identify the places that they feel most need to become autism-friendly, delivering autism talks and giving feedback on accessibility. It is bringing communities together, raising understanding.

So far, Aylesbury, Bath and Aberdeenshire have started working with us to transform the way their communities and local services understand autism. And through our experience of working with these towns and cities we’ve been developing our Autism Friendly Roadmap to help guide any community on its journey to becoming autism-friendly. Wirral-based charity, Autism Together, has also started work to make Liverpool autism-friendly.

We are pleased to be working with The National Autistic Society Scotland on this initiative to make Aberdeenshire autism-friendly. The aim of our project is to build capacity as well as sustainable processes in communities across Aberdeenshire which will allow people with autism to have improved access to services. We also hope it will lead to a better understanding of autism and to break down some of the barriers faced by autistic people on a daily basis.

Philip English, Head of Adult Services and Criminal Justice at Aberdeenshire Council

If you are interested in making your town or city autism-friendly, please contact autism.friendly@nas.org.uk.