This year, the European Days of Autism focused on the theme of autism and ageing; an issue that many autism organisations have yet to tackle due to the relatively recent recognition of autism as a specific condition.
Over the three days, this year’s events included:
- A conference on autism and ageing, entitled “Autism and the Challenges of Ageing” in Lyon (France). The event was attended by 220 participants and experiences and best practices from various European countries were exchanged.
- 50 delegates took part in a study visit, 50 participants from around 20 European countries took part in a study visit of the Village de Messimy, residential services for older people with autism in need of a high level of support.
- A meeting with the Asperger’s syndrome organisation;
- Presentation of Autism-Europe’s draft report on autism and ageing (and opportunities for members to contribute to the final report);
- Autism-Europe’s Council of Administration meeting.
The ‘European Days of Autism’ is an activity of Autism-Europe in which representatives of autism organisations and individuals come together to gain and share knowledge on a themed topic in relation to autism. The ‘European Days of Autism’ is held in a different city in Europe in October each year.
The events were held by Autism-Europe in conjunction with French host member, Sésame Autisme, and Canadian autism organisation, TED sans Frontières. The events also took place as part of the European year for active ageing and solidarity between generations 2012.