Longford Autism Foróige Club was established in November 2016 with the principal aim of giving young people on the Autism spectrum a place to meet and socialise in a fun, safe environment.
The idea of a youth club specific to young people with Autism was muted by Jim Maher Regional Youth Officer for Foróige.
Speaking to the Longford Leader, Jim explained that “Youth Clubs are an essential part of growing up, which aids the development of our young people.
“It is important that all young people experience the benefits of being part of a youth club. Young people with Autism often find social environments a bit more difficult, so with this in mind we decided to design a club that meets the specific needs of young people with Autism.”
The club is a volunteer led group with 10 members and growing all the time. Club Leader Geraldine McKeon is delighted with the success of the club as it has given the young people an outlet for them to be themselves and interact socially with their peers in an out of a school setting.
Geraldine explained that the group has taken part in their first project which was the Aldi Foróige Young Citizenship awards.
This programme involves young adults coming up with a project to enter which represents an improvement within the community.
The group decided to design their own club logo and a board to display their art outside the Attic House to assist in raising awareness about Autism and their place in our community.
A lot of hard work was put into this project and on April 1, the Autism Foróige Club had its launch day and revealed the new club logo.
The display board is situated on the wall of the Attic House Garden and was unveiled by the young members of the group to many guests on the day.
The day was arranged to coincide with the launch of Autism awareness month which goes on through the month of April.
The group will be attending the ALDI Citizenship awards ceremony on April 29 next.
The club would like to extend its heartfelt thanks to Rose Carroll Hunt, owner of Picture Perfect Scrabble who successfully raised €700 for the club.
If you would like to volunteer with the group which meets every Saturday from 4:30pm in the Attic House please do not hesitate to contact Geraldine on (086) 371 3261.
New volunteers and members are always welcome.