'Autism and work. Together we can.' campaign
In 2014, Autism-Europe members are conducting a campaign to raise awareness across Europe about the needs of adults with autism in the fields of education and employment.
Currently, between 76 and 90 percent of adults with autism are unemployed*. Adults with autism need access to post-school education, training and employment initiatives to enable them to join the workforce. Education and employment can also enable them to overcome the social exclusion they often face, taking more active roles in their communities, rather than being dependent on family and social support.
Activities and events in Europe
Once again, Autism-Europe members are organising a wide range of events and activities across Europe including bell-ringing ceremonies, art exhibitions, conferences and more - to mark World Autism Awareness Day. For the fourth year in a row, several worldwide cities will also join the 'Light It Up Blue' initiative by US organisation Autism Speaks, with landmark buildings around Europe and the globe lit up in blue for the night to raise awareness of autism.
About World Autism Awareness Day
On December 18, 2007, the United Nations General Assembly adopted resolution 62/139, tabled by the State of Qatar, which declares April 2 as World Autism Awareness Day (WAAD) in perpetuity. Her Highness Sheikha Mozah Bint Nasser Al-Missned, Consort of His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, the Emir of the State of Qatar, supported the campaign for a World Autism Awareness Day through the current 62nd UN General Assembly Session, garnering consensus support from all United Nations Member States.
This UN resolution is one of only three official disease-specific United Nations Days and will bring the world's attention to autism, a pervasive disorder that affects tens of millions. The World Autism Awareness Day resolution encourages all Member States to take measures to raise awareness about autism throughout society and to encourage early diagnosis and early intervention. It further expresses deep concern at the high prevalence rate of autism among children in all regions of the world and the consequent developmental challenges.
* Sources: UN Enable and The National Autistic Society (NAS) via the Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services.
- United Nations World Autism Awareness Day website
- Light It Up Blue website
- 2014 campaign: Autism and work. Together we can. - Download our campaign materials for 2014
- Light it up blue 2014
- 2013 campaign: Autism. More common than you think.