Autistic young people's voices are often underrepresented - but how do we change society if we don't listen to lived experience?
Let Me Be Me was created, scripted and voiced by our Autistic Activists, an incredible group of 9- to 17-year-olds who meet up to make friends, promote a positive self-identity and get their voices heard using creative methods.
In the film, the Activists remind us that everyone has the same human rights, and explain what dignity, equality and respect mean to them. "We are humans, not labels" after all, they tell us.
The film was created with the help of a professional animator for the charity's Everyday Equality campaign, which put autistic voices front and centre to address the barriers people face in their daily lives despite 15 years of autism awareness events. Dignity, equality and respect would go a long way to overcoming those obstacles.
Founded in 1980 by a group of parents who came together to establish Thornhill Park School in Sunderland, the North East Autism Society grew out of a desire to provide a better standard of education for autistic children. Having remortgaged their homes to purchase the building, our founders were dedicated to helping autistic young people fulfil their potential - and that commitment remains at the heart of everything we do.
Our services include education for children aged 3-19, post-16 education and social/vocational training along with supported and open employment opportunities for adults. Within our care services, we provide year-round residential placements and supported living services. We also work directly with parents and carers, offering family support which includes short breaks, support in the home, evening and weekend activities.
We passionately believe that autistic children and adults have significant skills and strengths, which can be developed throughout their lifetime.
We align with the following UN Sustainable Development Goals: