Construction and development of the self-advocacy in the Kutno region
empowerment of vulnerable groups
City (headquarters):
Voivodeship (headquarters):
01-01-2021 - 31-10-2022
Project cost:
65 996,00 EUR
63 746,00 EUR
Types of activities:
counselling, self-advocacy
Target groups:
children, caregivers of dependent persons

The project addresses the problem of insufficient support for children and adolescents on the autism spectrum (ASD). Within the 5 counties of the Kutno region, 141 children aged 4-12 years and 49 teenagers aged 13-19 years have an autism spectrum diagnosis. The offer of help for children and adolescents with ASD and their families is modest and does not respond to numerous needs, especially therapeutic support is lacking. At the same time, the level of public awareness of the autism spectrum is very low. There are many young people in the county who have not been diagnosed due to low knowledge of the autism spectrum and commonly held stereotypes about it.

The project initiated a self-advocacy movement in the Kutno area. Practical social skills training was conducted for three groups of children with ASD. Young people took part in diagnostic workshops and then in dozens of different activities in the Conscious Youth Club: self-advocacy workshops (e.g. on public speaking, aiming, creativity, innovation), meetings with active selfadvocates active in other cities, meetings with local authorities, integration trips. Club members and their families benefited from psychological counselling. Parents also attended several meetings with activists with ASD.

The project was an important addition to the available support for children and young people on the autism spectrum and their families. The children who took part in the social skills training improved their communication and social competences, developed awareness of themselves, their skills and abilities, and were keen to discuss their diagnosis, the difficulties arising from it, but also their potential. The young people who participated in the Club meetings raised their self-esteem, established relationships with other Club members, developed self-knowledge and prepared themselves for the role of self-advocates. The young people also undertook local self-advocacy work – they spoke to the authorities about their needs, and in one school led to the abolition of disruptive loud bells.

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