A huge part of Spectrum Gaming is our advocacy work.
We are a community that enables autistic young people to develop meaningful friendships and develop a more positive perspective of autism. But we have also created a movement that aims to have a positive influence on society through advocacy and enabling strategic change to ensure the needs of autistic young people are met across the UK. This doesn't just impact on our society, but helps young people to better advocate for themselves moving forward.
Here are some of the projects our community members are currently working on:
Barriers to Education
Unfortunately, a huge number of young people in our community struggle to attend or are out of school because of lack of understanding or support. We are working with Bury Council, Trafford Council and a variety of other partners to create innovative guidance on supporting young people who are struggling to access education. Over 300 young people, 600 parents and 80 professionals have contributed to the guidance so far. The website is not quite finished yet, but two sections are available, on Trauma and Anxiety, which are feely available for everyone to benefit from.
Many of our members feel Spectrum Gaming is the first place they have felt comfortable developing friendships, and they want to help other spaces and organisations create spaces that can achieve the same for young people who mainstream support often does not work for.
So far, we have run a variety of focus groups and activities to identify the key issues that need to be addressed. The next step is to create some resources that are free to access for all organisations, so they know what actionable steps they can take to make their groups work for all young people. These resources will be co-created with young people and will be put onto a ‘youth loneliness’ website, that will be free for all individuals and organisations to access and benefit from.
Autism Post Diagnosis
Often when a young person receives an autism diagnosis, parents are told what autism is, but young people do not get the opportunity to understand it. We have created a website, called Autism Understood, which was made in partnership with autistic young people themselves as well as professionals, parents and autistic adults. This website is aimed at autistic young people aged 10+ and contains an epic amount of information that will help people understand more about what autism actually is. While the website was launched in July 2023, there are still resources on more topics that we would love to create and add.
RESOURCES WE HAVE DEVELOPED
Here is some of the feedback we have had so far:
With the wide range of information and resources regarding autism that is available, it can be incredibly difficult to know what is right, and what needs to be done to ensure the best outcomes for autistic people, but we are here to help.
We can support you with work around 3 areas:
At Spectrum Gaming, not just will you be working with adults with lived experience, but we have worked together with local authorities, strategical boards, schools and much more in a professional capacity, so we also have extensive practice experience of supporting autistic people, in addition to being autistic ourselves.
We also believe in true representation of autistic people. Rather than running typical boards or groups for young people who feel confident enough to attend these, we focus on working in coproduction with young people who are often unheard, including young people who may be struggling to attend school, may be too anxious to attend typical 'youth voice groups' and more. This means we can offer insight which is often unheard, as long as you are able to adapt and work in a way that works for these young people.
In addition to consultancy work, we also run training and events about autism, which people can sign up to attend.
You can find out more about our latest webinars and book a place via eventbrite here.
One big difference between us and others, is that everything we earn from training/ consultancy will be invested directly into running and maintaining the activities we run for members of our community. So by using our services or paying for a training session, you are helping to support autistic young people to develop friendhips and have a voice. We also have autistic young people within our community who have gained enough confidence through our community that they now write and deliver training themselves, supervised/ supported by us.
Would you like to take the next step and get further information?
If you want to find out more or discuss a particular challenge, please email firstname.lastname@example.org