Friday 5 August 2011

Holiday Season

It is often said in the media industry that August is 'silly season' as far as newsworthy items go, which explains why local papers and news broadcasts this time of year tend fill up column inches and broadcast space with very trivial matters, including disputes over six bricks. At Autism Works  though, we try to see the 'silly season' as an opportunity to undertake tasks that normally pass us by during busier periods.

It feels so much quieter with Peter, the Managing Director, being away enjoying the remoteness of the Orkney Islands. Yes, it's his turn to do some island hopping now! However, to keep our followers interested and to show that there is much going on at Autism Works, we have started doing a daily post on the Autism Works Facebook wall, of any items related to autism, Asperger's Syndrome and software testing. We are taking it in turns to do choose and post items which hopefully our followers will find both interesting and entertaining.

When I first started working at Autism Works, Peter made it known to me that one of his favourite sites on Facebook was Artists and Autism. Artists and Autism is a Facebook group dedicated to raising awareness of autism through the arts. Those of you reading this blog who have visited or 'liked' this inspiring site on Facebook will know that there are some fantastic images here, and we are delighted that the page's admin Jeff Kellen has so kindly given us the green light to link images from Artists and Autism to the Autism Works Facebook page. Based in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Jeff also helps adults with autism and Asperger's Syndrome find and maintain employment. You can read Jeff's inspiring story This Shell of Mine on the Autism Works Facebook wall.

Though it is felt by some that Facebook and other social networking sites have a lot to answer for, but when used responsibly, they can provide an outlet to express creativity, especially for those who are perhaps unable to do it in more conventional ways. Artists and Autism is a great example of where Facebook comes into its own, enabling people on the autistic spectrum to express their creativity as well as invite the world to see what people on the autistic spectrum can do. In Jeff's words, it is a way for people on the autistic spectrum to 'come out of their shell'.

I have continued working on the Autism Works Operational Manual this week, but in the meantime, look out for more wall posts next week including some images from Artists with Autism, as well as any further developments during the holiday season.

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