The National Autistic Society’s mission is to create a society that works for autistic people. The organization helps to change attitudes towards people with autism by improving public understanding of autism, helping businesses and government bodies strengthen laws relevant to people with autism, and delivering improved services.
The National Autistic Society‘s goal is to transform the lives and careers of some 700,000 autistic people in the UK as well as that of their family members. The foundation works with local authorities and businesses to deliver improved services, laws, and spaces.
The National Autistic Society supports causes and projects that provide advice, guidance, and support to people with autism and their families. It includes helplines and service directories.
Some of the National Autistic Society’s most significant projects are:
#ActuallyAutistic is a volunteer-run group for autistic adults. The group gets together at a local café once a week with low-level sounds and muted or no music. Members can also get advice via the group’s Facebook page and website.
Some of the National Autistic Society’s campaigns have been:
- Coronavirus Campaign – The foundation urged UK governments to clarify that autistic people are exempt from wearing face coverings in public spaces, being allowed to go outside more than once a day during pandemic lockdowns, and other pertinent topics to people on the autism spectrum.
- Not Enough Campaign – A campaign focused on demanding improved support and services for autistic people.
- Transforming Care Campaign – This campaign focused on improving mental and physical health care for autistic people. It sought to ensure that mental health laws reflect their needs and that funding is available for community services.
The Autism Services Directory
The directory is a comprehensive list of services for autistic people. It covers mental health resources, social care, strategies and interventions, employment support, information about benefits and financial topics, leisure, criminal justice, and more.
Adult Residential Services
The foundation provides residential and supported living services for autistic adults, including person-centered support in rural and urban settings.
The foundation manages several schools for autistic people in the UK, including:
- Anderson Schools near Bristol and in Essex, England
- Broomhayes School & Children’s Center in Devon, England
- Church Lawton School in Staffordshire, England
- Daldorch House Scholl in Scotland
- Helen Allison School in Kent, England
- Radlett Lodge Schools in Hertfordshire, England
- Robert Odgen School in Yorkshire, England
- Sybil Elgar School in West London, England
- Thames Valley School in Berkshire, England
The Foundation's History
The National Autistic Society originated with the Autistic Children’s Aid Society of North London. The society was founded by parents of children with autism in 1962. In 1975, it was renamed the National Autism Society when it began covering the entire UK.