Autism Unity Website
This website has been created to ensure access to therapeutic care for Ukrainian children with autism and other developmental disabilities in countries of relocation.
In addition to witnessing the destruction and violence of war, Ukrainian children with autism are also grappling with the scary and overstimulating sound of sirens and ongoing shelling, the confinement of crowded bomb shelters, or the chaos of unexpected travel. Their interests, friendships and routines have been disrupted, and the many therapeutic supports on which they have come to rely on have been upended by the war. Some families are learning to navigate new environments in foreign countries while struggling to find the right therapeutic support. Yet others have opted to stay in Ukraine, as the perilous journey to safety would be too overwhelming and disruptive for their children.
Through this platform, families of autistic children and specialists can connect to make sure they receive the support needed: speech therapists, ABA, and others. There is also a space to share personal testimonies to raise awareness on the situation Ukrainian autistic families are experiencing.
Call to action from AE and EUCAP
After consultation with AE member Child with Future (Ukraine), AE, together with EUCAP, has launched a call to ensure the protection of Ukrainian autistic people. Indeed, at the moment they remain largely invisible and underserved by the current efforts.
Existing resources and support
- We encourage people interested in helping the autistic community in Ukraine to join this Facebook group.
This group is being used to help centralize information regarding existing channels of support for Ukrainian refugees and any kind of available support for autistic people in Ukraine.
- AE members organisations are volunteering to provide support – see more information per country here
- Visit EUCAP website for more information on solidarity and peer-support and information materials: Support for Ukrainian refugees: Autistic adults and families with autistic children
We call on anyone willing and able to help, to support the following actions:
You can contribute by:
- Volunteering to provide online services to help autistic people deal with trauma and the high level of stress they are experiencing – these services should be available preferably in Ukrainian, Russian, Belorussian and Polish.
- Helping refugees by offering translation and interpretation, transportation into and within the country, temporary accommodation, housing, basic health care, autism therapies, trauma therapy, school, leisure activities, peer support for children/adults/parents, childcare/respite, offering jobs, help with jobseeking, help with applying for benefits and other paperwork.
- Preparing information materials to raise awareness of public authorities/humanitarian aids about autism – including for countries that will welcome Ukrainian refugees. It should be noted that autistic adults in Ukraine are generally undiagnosed which makes accessing any kind of support even more difficult.
- Designing information in alternative/augmentative format to help deal with disruption and various difficult situations.
- Raising general awareness and advocating across Europe to address the urgent needs of the autistic community and their families in Ukraine and abroad.
If you are interested in helping with some of the actions mentioned, pleased contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org