AutAngel Newsletter May 2017
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Dear <<First Name>>

Welcome to AutAngel's May 2017 newsletter.
News from our directors and supporters
AutAngel's director Caroline Hearst and supporter Dinah Murray were both recognised at the 2017 Autism Professionals Awards ceremony. Caroline received the Award for Outstanding Achievement by an Individual on the Autism Spectrum, and Dinah the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Caroline has also been awarded a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust travelling fellowship to look at autistic peer support and research in Australia, New Zealand and the USA to enable her to bring back ideas to expand practise here.  She is particularly excited to be visiting Aaspire which produced an excellent health tool for Autistic people and to attend a Researching Autism Together Workshop run by the Autism Cooperative Research Centre in Australia.

All three AutAngel directors attend their local autism partnership boards.
Community Gardening Project
Our valiant volunteer Tony preparing the ground for  our community garden in Reading. We have initial funding and are currently seeking more and hoping to start  the project soon. If you would be interested in coming along please  sign up for it and you'll be sent further details. We think this will be a win/win situation giving autistic adults the opportunity to learn gardening skills, socialise and grow their own produce to eat.
"Being Autistic" opinions wanted
We have sold out of copies of our original print run of 1000 books and are looking for funding to reprint this book as it was very popular with readers.  While there
are lots of great books by autistic authors, this is valued as a short engaging selection of experiences that can help people newly identified or diagnosed as autistic come to terms with their new self-awareness.
The book is now available to download. We suggest a donation of £3. While a (very) few people have paid this and one person actually exceeded it, most people are currently downloading the book without donating. We would like your opinion as to whether we should have a compulsory charge for this, and if so how much, let us know what you think at
Opportunities in Hackney
If you are autistic and live in Hackney, you may want to contribute to the Hackney Council's autism strategy by joining the User Engagement workgroup. Find out more info by checking out The group was featured in the Hackney CitizenAutistic residents unite to tackle ‘discrimination and bullying’ and by Hackney Council: Autistic residents working to make Hackney autism friendly.  As you can see below our director David is taking part in this.
Support groups
With our Awards for All Lottery grant we ran peer support groups in Haselmere and Reading and a 10 week post-identification training and support programme for autistic adults in Reading. 

The post-identification programme was devised by Caroline some years ago to plug the gap she experienced after her autism diagnosis.  We were privileged to have Laura Crane of CRAE evaluate  this project.  The programme was highly valued with remarks like “meeting the group was massively relevant for me, because it’s one thing reading about it on the Internet but when you’re sitting in a room…that’s an epiphany” peppering the report.  We hope that the research will be published - watch this space!.

The group in Haselmere was for men and women was usually attended by more men than women.  In Reading we ran a womens group which started slowly but built up to having a regular attendance of 8-10 women.  The group in Haselmere is ongoing in a slightly changed format, with Laura running it on a voluntary basis.  We are looking for funding to restart the Reading groups and run the Post-Identification Programme again.
Meet us at Autscape
AutAngel's directors, Caroline, Laura and Panda, and supporter Dinah will all be attending Autscape. the conference by and for autistics. If you're going please come and have a chat with us as we'd like to meet you.
AutEvents Calendar
Events organised by autistics or featuring autistic speakers, as well as socials, are listed on our AutEvents calendar. Check it out and let us know of any you organise that are relevant to AutEvents.

We've launched a blog titled 'Speak up,' which you can read here:

This blog welcomes contributions from autistics about topics related to the autistic community. You can send your post proposals to for us to consider.

The inaugural post 'Are surveys fair?' elaborates on a letter written by Panda Mery that was published in the Autism Journal. It includes some data about preferences by autistics when communicating about autism. The second post highlight some issues with neurotypical researchers who are part of the Autism Industrial Complex.
Funding and Donations

We are very grateful to the person who anonymously donated £250 to AutAngel. Thank you! We need about £1000 a year just to exist.  If you find that shocking so do we! However to successfully apply for grants to continue to do our work we need to be properly constituted and submit accounts to Companies House - after making a tiny error with this and getting a large fine we realised we needed an accountant who has to get paid.

Our directors and committee members don't get paid, but do get their fares to meetings reimbursed and also fed during the meeting.

Most grants are project based and don't pay these basic running costs, so we really appreciate any donations however large or small. You can find our PayPal and bank details on our Donate page if you would like to make a donation.
Copyright © 2017 AutAngel, All rights reserved.

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