It’s been a little over 2 years since we launched Autism Connect, our free, national autism helpline supporting Autistic people, their families, health professionals and the broader community. In that time, our Advisors have had many conversations over phone, email and webchat with people from all over the country.
We’re excited to share that our Autism Connect service has now helped more than 40,000 people who have reached out in need of information and support, wanting to learn more about autism or to share their stories.
For Amaze CEO Jim Mullan, this milestone highlights how important quality information and a sense of connection can be for Autistic people, their families and their supporters.
“Autism Connect was created to help make sure Autistic people and their families always had somewhere to go to ask questions, get information and advice, and feel understood. Since then, we’ve seen it grow to become a vital service in our community. We’re excited to see it continue to evolve to meet the changing needs of the autism community,” says Jim.
We wouldn’t exist without our community, and seeing and hearing their positive response to how this service is meeting their needs is something we’re incredibly proud of. Here is just some of the wonderful feedback our Advisors have received this year:
‘It was really reassuring [having an Advisor with lived experience]. They said it’s common having imposter syndrome and it makes sense to have those thoughts and concerns. I resonated with them’ – Autistic person
‘The first time I called, [the Advisor] was very knowledgeable and quick off the mark to understand where I was coming from. I was a concerned parent learning everything I could. They gave my daughter support and were very gentle, very accommodating, and easy to understand.’ – Parent/ carer
‘I am constantly evolving my knowledge… say, for example, people with Autism may mask and try to fit in and cover up. [I have learnt] how challenging it is and I am aware of that. The resources now give me a greater understanding of that’ – Professional
This special milestone wouldn’t have been possible without the incredible funding support from the Department of Social Services and our service delivery partners – Autism Tasmania, Empower Autism, MaryMead Autism Centre, Spectrum Space Australia and Autism Community Network Australia.
It also wouldn’t have been possible without the daily commitment and care shown from our Advisor team who provide this invaluable support, and the community who allow us to connect and put their trust in our team.
We look forward to continuing to support the community with this much needed service so that all Autistic people and their families can live their best lives.
To connect with our Autism Connect Advisors, call 1300 308 699 or visit Autism Connect to send us an email or webchat. Our team is available to support you from 8am to 7pm on Monday to Friday.
Amaze is committed to providing an inclusive service for all members of our community. You can use the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS) to speak to an Autism Connect advisor in a language other than English. TIS National provides operator-assisted access to an immediate phone interpreter in over 160 languages. To access this service, call the TIS National Contact Centre on 131 450 and ask to speak to Autism Connect on 1300 308 699.