A BRIEF HISTORY
Different Journeys started when two mums (Mel and Merrin) came together to do something about the loneliness and isolation they and their Autistic children were experiencing. In February 2016 the first Autistic Teen Peer Support Social Group event was held at Club Kilsyth. It was an immediate success due to the overwhelming need from the then local community in the outer Eastern suburbs.
Different Journeys has continued to grow and evolve to meet the needs of our Autistic community from that day on. Our talented pool of volunteers, peer mentors, Board members, partners and professional supporters has also grown. We are proud of our collective achievements and of the many lives that have been positively changed forever because of Different Journeys.
Our peer support social events are for both Autistic teens, Autistic adults, the carer(s) and their families. It allows individuals to build transferable skill sets such as communication skills, social skills, ability to maintain more meaningful relationships and skills to access the community.
There are lots of ‘hidden rules’ when going out socially in public and Different Journeys aims to empower our Autistic community with the skills and knowledge by creating real events in a safe and supported environment to learn. Our holistic wraparound approach enables carers to also build their networks, learn different approaches and learning to navigate the maze.
The journey for families for teens and adults is made that little bit easier by connecting with the world and not feeling so alone.”
Executive Officer and Co-founder
To provide social platforms that connect Autistic youth and Autistic adults and their families in inclusive safe and supportive environments. This enables us to provide individualised wraparound supports to decrease the prevalence of mental illness and social isolation in the Autism community and enhance their employment and education opportunities. It also creates a place for the broader community to embrace, learn from and empower the Autism community.
To create ways for the Autistic community to connect, empower and support each other and exchange isolation, prejudice and ignorance with connections, hope and community. We support Celebrations. We provide Connections. We create Communities.
A future where Autistic people fully participate in public life facilitated by community awareness and understanding.