Well it's certainly been a crazy few weeks around here. April's Autism Awareness month saw a flurry of requests for talks, presentations, discussions and blog posts. In the last 3 weeks alone I've given presentations at Aspergers Victoria, the Melbourne Autism Expo, the Aspect Autism in Education Conference, and at John Monash Science School. I hope you managed to get along to an event or expo, or just read some of the many new articles online, to increase your own knowledge about living well on the spectrum.
One study I've had the good fortune to be involved with recently is the Australian Wellbeing Project. While quality of life and happiness (or subjective wellbeing) have been studied for over 30 years, it is only recently that individuals with autism have been asked about their happiness levels across seven domains: standard of living, health, achieving in life, relationships, safety, community, and future security. There is some data showing autistic adults are less happy than non-autistics, by about 10 points on the Personal Wellbeing Index.
Now it is time to give teenagers on the spectrum their chance to inform policy development. If you are the parent of an adolescent aged 13+, or an adult aged 18+, please give 15 minutes of your time to participate in this important research. The team at Deakin University require a few hundred participants, both with and without autism, to complete the online survey, and are offering a prize draw for completed surveys. Parents will be sent a link for adolescents to complete their own 5 minute survey.
Click on the link here to read more about the project and to start the survey http://www.wellbeingindex.net.au/
After such a busy month, I'm looking forward to increasing my own wellbeing with a little more time for researching, writing, editing and catching up on sleep!