Video of ASC & Book Launch - 22nd September 2016
Speakers on the night were Cian Hutt, David Mahon, Diarmuid Heffernan and Kirsten Hurley.
Thanks to Cork City Libraries (and especially Patricia Looney) for hosting us!
and welcome to the first ever ASC blog post!
I (Kirsten Hurley) will be posting here about all things autism-related along with guest bloggers from the autistic community (both from Ireland and further afield). There is so much to talk about but I will try and restrain myself for now - in this post I will summarize what we were up to in ASC in 2016. Please do poke around the website while you are here - I put it together myself and would love to hear any feedback you may have.
2016 was a busy year for us here at ASC (so busy in fact that I am only writing about it now!). Diarmuid Heffernan and I had been working together and presenting talks and workshops on autism and Asperger's for quite some time (see some of our work here). We came to realise there is a great need for accessible and accurate information around the autistic spectrum and what it means to be autistic. Not only that, but people with autism (or autistic people depending on your preference!) should be a key part of disseminating that information. So last year we decided to formalize the work we were doing and name our Autism Spectrum Consultancy - ASC.
ASC was officially launched on the 22nd of September 2016 in Cork City Library. We are not really ones for fuss so it was a fairly low-key affair, but it was a wonderful evening with friends, family and strangers alike (and quite emotional one too -which you will see if you watch the video at the top of this post!).
Diarmuid also launched his book 'Sensory Issues for Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder' that night. The book uses interviews with people on the spectrum to discuss their sensory experiences and offer practical advices on how to deal with potential sensory difficulties. The foreword was written by autism expert Dr Luke Beardon.
For those of you who haven't read it and are interested in finding out more - you can read a sample here.
As well as launching ASC and the book, we delivered a number of workshops and talks to the general public, support staff in colleges and schools, psychotherapists, and even members of An Garda Síochana. This is in addition to offering support and advice to individuals on the spectrum (and often their families too).
We also attended a number of conferences this year, learning more about how being autistic may impact on your experience of the criminal justice system, what is it like to be a autistic woman or girl, hearing from international autism experts such as Dr Peter Vermeulen (AsIAm Conference) and Dr Judith Gould (NAS Women and Girls Conference) as well as talented (and hilarious!) speakers with autism such as Sarah Hendrickx and Dean Beadle.
We'd like to thank everyone for their support in 2016 - and look forward to what 2017 will bring!