AFAM » Strategic Issues » 3b) Changemakers Alliance

In contrast to the big and established autism organisations are the less well-known individual changemakers. At the moment, each changemaker is working on their initiative in private, often keeping their plans secret and activities separate from each other. What we need is an alliance of changemakers to unite as a team without competing against each other, where each can be the owner of a unique niche that adds value to the community.

Such an alliance will be able to exercise the influence of a large organisation collectively, easing the way for the many projects that aim to fill the gaps ignored by the established organisations. It will be divided into various sectors such as (physical) wellness, community building, leadership development, autism support services, advocacy, research, career-building etc. This will eventually become an integrated ecosystem of inclusive-minded parties that will expand outside the autism community to benefit the entire world.

There will be a one “sign on” system where a participant can sign up to the entire ecosystem and give consent to participate in all the initiatives that they are eligible for. Autistics will “adopt” their favourite sector based on their interests, and be invited to be the ambassador of those sectors.

Lots of small fries can become a giant whale to create change. Imagine community peer-to-peer insurance to cover those rejected by insurers, researchers using one large consolidated pool of candidates instead of having to recruit candidates by themselves, community events combined into an integrated large Olympics style event broadcasted on prime time TV instead of many tiny separate ones, small social enterprises hiring autistics biding jointly for a large national-level project.

This alliance breaks down the silos within the autism community and gets all parties to be in sync with each other while following a mutually agreed masterplan for change. What we can achieve together is much greater than the sum of what we can achieve alone.