Autism is a lifelong neurological developmental condition, characterised by a range of difficulties in social interaction and communication that affect how a person sees, understands and relates to the world around them.
It is not an illness or a disease. It is a spectrum condition and although all autistic people share certain difficulties, being autistic will affect them in different ways, meaning they need a range of support. As well as having different levels of ability some autistic people may have a learning disability, mental health issues, sensory processing difficulties and other conditions.
There is no cure and for many people being autistic is a fundamental part of their identity. Everyone on the autistic spectrum can learn and progress and early speech and language therapy and other behavioural interventions can develop self-care, social, and communication skills.
Autistic individuals require varying levels of support throughout their lives and whilst some may always need direct care others may be able to become more independent and self sufficient. With the right support all autistic individuals should be able to live fulfilling lives.
Globally, autism is estimated to affect around 25 million people. In the UK it is estimated that about 1 in 100 people are autistic and in Northern Ireland around 30,000 people are living with autism.
Links below to a number of organisations' website pages that provide more detail about Autism and related conditions.
HOW TO SUPPORT US
We are a newly established local non-profit organisation and we need as much support as possible.
If you think you can help, are able to donate money or equipment for the centre, or would like to be involved in building this community and creating better opportunities for the people of Fermanagh, please get in touch.