Welcome to AUsome
An AUsome Story: Putting Autistic People at the Heart of Autism Training
Our story began in 2014 with a mission to create Autistic-led neurodiversity training designed and delivered by Autistic people. We recognized the need for Autistic-led training that would educate people on the realities of being Autistic and dispel the harmful myths and stigmas that surround our existence. Autistic people have long been shrouded in misunderstanding, and we are here to bridge that gap in understanding and remove the stigma.
Autistic-led Autism Training: Shaping a Better Narrative
At AUsome Training, we are proud to be an Autistic-led organization. Our dedicated team of Autistic professionals is passionate about creating a better world and rewriting the story for Autistic people of all ages. In addition to our comprehensive training programs, we have organized numerous events over the past number of years to raise positivity and genuine awareness. These events have featured and elevated Autistic voices, reaching thousands of parents, teachers, employers, therapists, and other professionals.
Making History: Ireland’s First All-Autistic Conference
One of the significant milestones in our journey occurred in 2019 when we hosted Ireland’s first-ever All-Autistic Conference in Cork. It was a groundbreaking event as it was the first time an autism conference featured exclusively Autistic presenters. We welcomed speakers from the United States, United Kingdom, and Ireland, attracting an audience of 350 people and engaging another 5,000 online viewers. This conference marked an essential turning point in promoting progressive thinking and understanding of Neurodiversity.
Progressive Thinking on Autism: Challenging Outdated Ideas
Traditional autism conferences and events often fail to center Autistic thinking, leading to inaccurate ideas and potential mistreatment of Autistic children and adults. At AUsome Training, we are committed to offering the most progressive and up-to-date perspectives on Neurodiversity. We collaborate regularly with other Autistic trainers, including speakers, authors, professionals, researchers, activists, and advocates, to ensure our training is of the highest quality.
Our goal is to create Neuro-affirming training opportunities where Autistic individuals can educate others, challenging existing misconceptions and teaching the realities of autism through excellent CPD courses, webinars, live talks, onsite-training sessions, and articles.
The Journey Begins: Evaleen Whelton’s Vision
AUsome Training was founded by Evaleen Whelton, who made the wonderful discovery of her own Autistic identity in 2014 at the age of 37. Realizing the contradictions between the information she received from autism “experts” and the Autistic community, she became a passionate advocate for positive change for Autistic people in Ireland and around the world. As a trainer, Evaleen focused her efforts on raising appreciation for Autistic thinking, designing and delivering neuro-affirming workshops and collaborating with others in the field.
Her journey aimed to normalize the perception of autism within the wider community. Through her articles, conferences, talks, and program development, Evaleen has been at the forefront of training others with the most current thinking around autism. She firmly believes in providing a platform for open, frank, and honest discussions about autism with Autistic individuals at the core.
AUsome Training: Pioneering Positive Change
Above all, AUsome Training serves as a catalyst for much-needed positive change. Our approach places Autistic people at the heart of our autism training, ensuring that their perspectives and experiences shape the narrative. We are committed to fostering understanding, breaking down barriers, and empowering Autistic individuals to thrive in a world that values and respects their unique strengths and contributions.
Join us on this transformative journey as we work together to create a more inclusive and accepting society for Autistic people everywhere.
AUsome Ireland was created by Evaleen Whelton. Evaleen made the wonderful discovery that she is autistic in 2014 at the age of 37. Since then she has been advocating for positive change for Autistic people in Ireland and around the globe.
COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT OFFICER
Joana helps us share all our exciting news and advocacy work on social media. Originally from Germany, she has been living in Ireland since 2015. She made the lucky discovery that she was Autistic,ADHD and Apraxic at the age of 30. As co-founder of Neuro Pride Ireland, she is passionate about creating neuro-affirming communities, writing for educational purposes, and everyday design. Joana is an experienced EFL teacher and holds a BA in Political Science, an MA in Intercultural Communication, and a Certificate in Digital Market
SUBJECT MATTER EXPERT
Stiof MacAmhalghaigh is our Subject Matter Expert at AUSome Training. Stiof is an Autistic theorist, trainer and campaigner with decades of experience supporting neurodivergent students. Self-identified as Autistic at 12, they gained clinical confirmation at 30. Stiof has worked on developing a comprehensive Autistic-oriented theory of Autistic living for over a decade, publishing, presenting and training on this work internationally via conferences, Autistic Union, and most recently through their Infinite Diversity blog and Ausome Training webinars
Introducing Stiof MacAmhalghaigh, our esteemed Subject Matter Expert at AUSome Training.
With decades of experience supporting neurodivergent students, Stiof is a highly regarded Autistic theorist, trainer, and campaigner.
Stiof’s journey of self-identification as Autistic began at the age of 12, and they obtained clinical confirmation at 30. Since then, Stiof has dedicated their life to developing a comprehensive Autistic-oriented theory of Autistic living, which forms the foundation of their impactful work.
Their expertise and insights have been widely recognized, leading to international engagements through conferences, the Autistic Union, and their influential Infinite Diversity blog and Ausome Training courses.
As a trainer, theorist, and international speaker, Stiof brings a wealth of knowledge to their role. Their pioneering ‘CDF’ model of Autistic Living serves as a guiding framework throughout our course, providing a unique perspective on the diverse experiences of autistic individuals.
Stiof’s deep involvement in the Autistic community as a researcher, rights activist, advocate, and educator further enriches their understanding of the challenges and needs of neurodivergent individuals.
Since 2002, Stiof has provided invaluable one-on-one and group support to Autistic and other neurodivergent students, spanning from primary to third-level education. Their commitment to empowering individuals through education and personalized support is unmatched, making a lasting impact on the lives of those they work with.
Stiof’s insights, theories, and extensive research are highly regarded within the field, establishing them as a prominent thinker who tirelessly strives towards creating a better world for Autistic individuals. Their dedication to advocating for Autistic rights and promoting inclusive practices is evident in all aspects of their work.
When you engage with Stiof MacAmhalghaigh, you can expect nothing short of exceptional expertise and an unwavering commitment to empowering Autistic individuals. Their unique perspectives, comprehensive theories, and extensive experience are invaluable assets that contribute to the transformative journey towards a more inclusive society.
By partnering with Stiof MacAmhalghaigh, you are choosing to learn from a remarkable thinker and advocate who has dedicated their life’s work to championing the rights and well-being of Autistic individuals. Join them on a transformative journey towards a better world for all.
EARLY EDUCATION EXPERT
Introducing Gillian Kearns, a dedicated Early Childhood educator with a wealth of experience spanning the primary education and child protection sectors. With a strong focus on fostering collaboration and improving relationships and outcomes, Gillian has made a significant impact throughout her career. Gillian's passion lies in supporting adults and young people to work together harmoniously, promoting a positive and inclusive environment.
Recognizing the importance of understanding the neurodivergent experience, she has actively worked with parents, guardians, and families to equip them with the knowledge and tools needed to support the young people in their care effectively.
As a co-founder of Neuro Pride Ireland, Gillian has played a pivotal role in establishing a self-directed community space and Disabled Persons Organisation (DPO). Through their annual festival, Neuro Pride Ireland celebrates and honors the diverse communities and identities within the neurodivergent spectrum, including a special children’s festival. Education is a cornerstone of NeuroPride’s work, exemplified by their engaging YouTube channel that amplifies the voices of neurodivergent individuals.
AUTISTIC CULTURE MENTOR AND CONSULTANT
Meet Scott Neilson!
Scott is an Autistic Trainer, Mentor and Consultant based in Scotland. They are dedicated to informing people of Autistic experience and culture and reframing the narrative in society. Scott has over 25 years of personal experience as an Autistic person, in addition to over 5 years of professional experience supporting Autistic people and their families within various settings and organisations.
Scott also works independently under ‘Autistically Scott’.
Within the past few years, they have delivered sessions to hundreds of professionals, including teachers, social workers, educational psychologists and therapists.”
Scott’s events always get fantastic feedback
“Thank you Scott. This was a lovely training session which was very beneficial, it allowed me to critique my practice as a practitioner and reflect on what I could change for individual children to support them. The session was delivered well and very communication friendly.”
– School Teacher (North Lanarkshire Council)
“Thank you!! This was a very engaging and interesting session and one of the best trainings I have attended. It was so helpful to hear your thoughts and experiences and I have been reflecting on my own practice and experiences as a result.”
– Staff Member from Autism Spectrum Information and Support Team (ASIST) (Fife Council)