To celebrate World Autism Awareness Day (2nd April), Sussex Coast College Hastings is hosting a full day of events and activities on Friday 15th April to help raise awareness and understanding of Autism in the local community.

(3 minute read)

The college is passionate about providing specialist support for students with additional learning needs. Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how a person communicates with, and relates to, other people. It also affects how they make sense of the world around them.

Through a number of talks, pop-up stands, and events at the Station Plaza campus, the college will aim to educate people about this invisible disability, giving an insight into what life is like with autism and stressing the importance of making reasonable adjustments to educational and working environments.

Guest speakers will talk about the difficulties that people with autism share, and the types of support that is available to those who need it.

Kerry Mitchell, Sussex Coast College Hastings, said: “It is still relatively unknown that by making just a few adjustments in an education or work environment it can greatly help someone with autism achieve their full potential.”

“We want to let people know that adjustments don’t have to be expensive or take a lot of time. It could be as simple as writing basic bullet pointed instructions. Autism is an invisible disability and as a community, we should recognise an individual’s plight.”

“With the right support, reasonable adjustments and understanding, individuals with autism can meet their potential goals whether those goals are in education or employment”

Kerry continued: “It’s disappointing to read [from the National Autism Society] that only 15% of people with autism are in employment. When you consider that approximately 1 in 100 people have autism, this percentage is really low. There is also a high percentage of people who are on work benefits but actually want to be in employment, so this is why we need to raise awareness and help give them the same opportunities as everyone else.”
   
The college is encouraging students, parents and carers, and businesses to come along to the free event which runs from 10am till 4pm.

The college holds Autism Accreditation status from the National Autism Society for their Supported Education Provision. Their fully trained and dedicated support team will be available throughout the day to talk about the support they offer to young people.

If you would like to find out more about the support the college offers please visit our Additional Learning Support page on the website: www.sussexcoast.ac.uk or call 01424 458530.

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