This Autism Acceptance Week we are sharing stories from the people we support and hearing their perspective on raising acceptance of autism.

Today we hear from Lorraine who attends our Roebuck Enterprises day opportunities in Hastings. Lorraine tells us how taking part in the sessions at Roebuck has changed her life and her thoughts on how more awareness is needed of autism in our society. Lorraine and the team at Roebuck Enterprises are looking forward to welcoming all to their Open Day tomorrow, find out more here!

Lorraine, 43, (pictured with Roebuck manager Paula Taylor) is autistic and has attended drama, ceramics, and the ‘CORE’ sessions (administration, invoicing, events etc.) at Roebuck Enterprises for around 6.5 years.

“My favourite part of coming to Roebuck is seeing people and doing the activities. Before I started coming I felt isolated and didn’t have a social circle. Now, I’m more sociable, confident and outgoing. 

I’ve learned lots of new skills such as how to make different types of jam and chutney, extended my acting skills, learnt how to make props, how to write an invoice and computer skills.

I know the increase in my confidence since coming to Roebuck will help me in my future life as well as knowing more about following instructions.

To anyone thinking about coming to Roebuck I’d say – it’s really good for your mental wellbeing, it keeps you active and it’s a great way to build friendships.

Coming here makes me feel useful and makes me feel worth something.

I think people need to be given training to help raise awareness of autism in our society. For example, people who work on public transport like buses. It would be good if there were separate areas on buses that autistic people could sit in. The lighting in public places is often very bright and I think the needs of autistic people should be considered when planning this. There needs to be better environments tailored for all abilities.”