A better life for adults with autism is the motto of The Academy for Adults with Autism, a non-profit organization, based in the southern suburbs of Cape Town, aiming to improve public awareness, support and opportunities for adults on the autism spectrum. There is a dire lack of suitable occupation and care facilities for autistic adults in South Africa and globally. The Academy for Adults with Autism was founded with the intention of finding appropriate solutions to this issue.
The Academy was founded in 2007, beginning with the establishment of a Social Support Group, allowing parents, guardians and family members of autistic individuals to come together and share their experiences, express the particular difficulties they face, and talk about solutions to the struggles those affected by autism face in their daily lives. This support group also takes the form of an online, correspondence-based support system, open to all. This is aimed at providing suitable referrals for families regarding support, diagnosis and care giving in areas where The Academy for Adults with Autism cannot directly assist.
From here The Academy has grown to include an Enrichment Program that runs during the week and a full-time care facility in the form of a Communal Home for autistic adults. Over the years these three main pursuits have been our focus, allowing us to grow our understanding and our experiences with autism, autistic individuals, and the broader neurodiverse community. Recently we have also begun a recycling initiative, the Eco Bugs project, focused on occupation for autistic adults as well as community outreach through the collection, sorting, and on-sale of recyclable goods.