Volunteers needed for a new bid to help autistic adults

SBBN National Autistic Society Scotland
SBBN National Autistic Society Scotland

East Dunbartonshire residents are being urged to volunteer with a new mentoring project for autistic adults.

The Person to Person project, delivered by The National Autistic Society Scotland, will help around 250 autistic people to overcome challenges and meet goals over the next five years.

Thanks to support from The Big Lottery Fund’s Improving Lives fund, the charity is training a team of volunteers to support the project – and it wants East Dunbartonshire residents to get involved.

Jenny Paterson, director of The National Autistic Society Scotland, said: “Thanks to funds raised by National Lottery players, we are able to train a team of volunteers to mentor autistic people in East Dunbartonshire face-to-face, by phone or by email.

“Together, they will overcome challenges and meet goals, such as taking part in social activities, facing problems at work, or dealing with complicated banking and housing issues.”

People who volunteer with the project will receive training, which covers autism awareness, safeguarding and setting boundaries, as well as regular support and reviews.

Big Lottery Fund Scotland chairwoman Maureen McGinn, said: “I am delighted that The National Autistic Society has been successful in securing a Big Lottery Fund grant.

“This National Lottery funding will make a big difference where it is needed most, and I wish The National Autistic Society every success as it goes on to develop and expand its project for the benefit of their local community.”

Volunteer mentors will also help autistic people in East Dunbartonshire to identify the local cafes, venues and other public spaces that they would use more often if they were autism-friendly.

The National Autistic Society Scotland will then give these businesses pointers on increasing their accessibility, helping to reduce the social isolation that affects two thirds of people living in Scotland.

To find out more about volunteering with The National Autistic Society Scotland, email PersontoPerson@nas.org.uk