Our overall aim is to help children and young people with autism – and their families – to overcome barriers, gain skills, and reach new heights of achievement.
Case studies: the effectiveness of BILS
“Alex is 5 years old and has a diagnosis of autism. One of the biggest concerns for Alex’s parents was that at 5 years old he was still wearing nappies and was completely unable to use a toilet. Alex’s teachers at school had started to put pressure on his parents to get him toilet trained, as they said that they were unable to change his nappy while at school. It was decided that we would try a Bespoke Illustrated Life/Social Sequence to try and get Alex toilet trained and to help him understand how to use the toilet. Since Alex’s special interest is Mario brothers, these were incorporated in the story to help motivate Alex. The story was used alongside an Angry Birds reward chart.
The bigger picture: how we engage in autism research.
Autismine is a social enterprise with research at its core. Our immediate goal is to help children and young people with autism to navigate their way through social difficulties, using Bespoke Illustrated Life/Social Sequences (BILS). And then we have a wider aim: to use our work to inform research.
When we are commissioned to create a new BILS for a young person (which can cost as little as £10 read more) our consultation process includes talking to them and their caregivers about the worry, behaviour or challenge that needs to be tackled. We find out about special interests and specific concerns.
Once the BILS is in use, we arrange a follow-up consultation to see how things are progressing. We offer a free edit/adjustment to enhance the young person’s engagement with their BILS. The idea is to develop an ongoing dialogue with the family and use the outcomes to inform a broader understanding of people’s needs. We are always looking to discover what is effective and what else can be done to help.
Analysing the needs and requests of the children and young people we help gives us valuable anecdotal and empirical data. Over time we can use this insight to develop new interventions, inform further studies and even influence government commissioning and social policy for the benefit of people who have autism.
It goes without saying that our service is confidential. We are keen to share the many positive outcomes of BILS through testimonials, but will always work with families to protect names and identities.
Our overarching aim is to help people who have autism to cope with the complexities of modern life, nurture their confidence, and achieve more.