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About Us

In 1967, a group of parents who were struggling to find autism resources, set up the ‘Victorian Autistic Children’s and Adult’s Association’. It provided a central information source and supported individuals and their families. The organisation was renamed ‘Autism Victoria Inc’ in 1999 and again renamed Amaze in 2013.

Today Amaze is the peak body for people on the autism spectrum and their supporters in Victoria.

Amaze raises awareness and influences positive change for people on the autism spectrum and their families/supporters and provides independent, credible information and resources to individuals, families, professionals, government and the wider community.

 

Amaze Strategic Statements


Our Social Impact

Amaze aims for a society that:

• Respects the dignity of every person on the autism spectrum; and

• Offers every person on the autism spectrum real opportunities to participate and contribute.

 

Our Purpose

We want every person on the autism spectrum to have the opportunity to exercise their own choice to participate meaningfully in, and make a valued contribution to, our society.

We build awareness and understanding of autism.

We develop community capacity by working with others to help them value and support people on the autism spectrum and their families.

 

Our Principles

These principles underpin our decision making and the ways the Amaze board, staff and volunteers approach their work.

  1. Autistic People & Their Families at the Centre – We embody the motto “nothing about us without us”. We act as a facilitator to ensure the voices and needs of autistic people and their families/supporters are heard in the wider world. We proactively engage with autistic people and their supporters to inform our priorities, how our organisation is governed and operates, and how we design and deliver our activities. We actively work to improve attitudes and behaviours towards autistic people and their families/supporters.
  2. Collaboration and Partnership. We recognise that we cannot achieve our social impact goals alone and so we actively seek out like-minded people and organisations as partners.
  3. Courage and Independence. We condemn any discrimination and ableism used to stigmatise or invalidate the life experience of autistic people. Whilst we adopt a practice of partnership, the needs of autistic people and their families will always come first, and we will speak out and challenge any government or organisation’s policy or practice that compromises autistic people.
  4. Evidence based. We seek data and evidence to underpin decision making and we measure the outcomes of our work wherever possible. We advocate for greater collection of and accessibility to, data from public institutions that measure and track outcomes for autistic people and result in greater accountability.

 

Our Accountability

We are committed to working openly and transparently and hold ourselves accountable to the autism community and wider society. The autism community is diverse and is represented by autistic people, family members, carers and supporters, autismspecific organisations, businesses and community groups, governments and the wider world. Stakeholders may be part of one or more of these groups; for example, a parent of an autistic person may also be autistic. Achieving measurable impact and reach and ensuring Amaze’s long term sustainability are our most important priorities. Amaze must secure $1 million of additional funding each year to fund our core operating costs to ensure its longer term viability and sustainability to achieve our strategic goals. We will seek out pro-bono support from individuals and organisations to provide goods and services we need to operate. We operate in a financially sustainable manner with the Amaze Board and its Finance Audit & Risk Committee reviewing financial performance monthly. We have a strategic Fundraising Plan in place that directs how we finance our work from a mix of funders including philanthropic foundations, community donations and events, our fee for service capacity building activities and from all tiers of government (commonwealth, state and local).

 

 

Our Outcomes by 2040


AMAZE Outcomes by 2040 We will measure our progress towards these outcomes:
  • Community awareness and understanding of autism in Victoria increases over time.
  • An increasing percentage of Victorians understand the key facts about autism.
  • Attitudes and behaviour towards people on the autism spectrum by the Victorian community (government, private and social sectors) improves over time.
  • An increasing number of institutions build their capabilities to positively engage with people on the autism spectrum.
  • Discrimination decreases.
  • Opportunities for meaningful participation and valued contribution increase for people on the autism spectrum.
  • Choices and opportunities for people on the autism spectrum are increasing.


Read our full strategic plan – Amaze Strategic Directions to 2040 here

Alternatively, read the summary version here

 

Activities and Services

  • InfoLine – free phone support for general assistance and advice.
  • Government ‘Helping Children With Autism’ Funding – support and advice in accessing funding for children 0-6 years with a diagnosis of autism.
  • Early Days Workshops – information and education sessions for individuals and families with a recent diagnosis of autism. Dedicated programs for Aboriginal families and non-custodial parents.
  • Amaze Knowledge  – training programs for professionals, businesses and community organisations.
  • Campaigns and Events - Spectrospective: Stories of Autism for World Autism Awareness Day and the Victorian Autism Conference (VAC) – the premier biennial event for the Victorian ASD community.
  • eSpectrum newsletter - free fortnightly online newsletter for the ASD community.
  • Online resources - providing quality support and assistance 24×7 for individuals, families and professionals.
  • Government Advice and Advocacy – working to influence systematic change in priority areas of access to assessment, education, employment and the NDIS.
  • Fundraising – increasing funds so that we can provide more and better services to the ASD community.
  • NDIS readiness – Disability support organisation project.

 

Patron

Professor Margot Prior AO is the Patron of Amaze. She is an internationally acclaimed researcher, teacher and clinician in the field of Autism Spectrum Disorder with many years experience and extensive knowledge of the condition.

Read about Professor Prior

 

Need Help?

T: 03 9657 1600 (Metro)
T: 1300 308 699 (Regional)

 

Traditional Owners

Amaze acknowledges the traditional owners of the land where we work and pays respects to elders past and present.