Aspire - The Asperger Syndrome Association of Ireland
Aspire - The Asperger Syndrome Association of Ireland was set up by a group of parents in 1995 to provide support for people with Asperger Syndrome (AS) and their carers, and to encourage and undertake research into the condition.
AS is a complex brain disorder and is seen as part of the Autistic Spectrum. Generally those affected by the condition have an IQ within the normal range but may have extremely poor social and communication skills. Common characteristics can be a lack of empathy, little ability to form relationships, one-sided conversations and an intense absorption with a special interest. Sometimes movements can be clumsy. However, with the proper support people with AS can lead full and productive lives.
Many famous people such as W.B. Yeats, Albert Einstein and Isaac Newton are said to have been affected by AS. In Ireland it is estimated that several thousand people have the syndrome, with about nine times as many men affected as women. The lack of services in this country places an enormous burden on parents. For many, obtaining a diagnosis is often a major undertaking and can take up to several years. Even with a diagnosis parents soon realise that few primary and secondary schools have the staff or resources to deal with the special needs of children with AS. Bullying can be a huge problem for these vulnerable children and adults.
Over the years, Aspire has developed support, education and training services for those affected by AS and their families. The Association organises conferences, seminars and courses throughout the year with the aim of raising awareness of the Syndrome across the nation and also encouraging ongoing research on the condition. In addition, we give advice regarding the setting up of support groups throughout the country.
Aspire encourages people to become members of the Association so they can avail of our services. We produce a quarterly newsletter, where we provide members with all the latest information on AS. We also run a busy telephone help-line, where we offer information on the condition and the approach that may be taken towards the condition by the family/siblings/employers/ as well as by the person themselves. We also run a residential unit and helped to set up two supported employment centres. Finally, we lobby the Government departments and Agencies on behalf of our members.
In order to expand the goals of the organisation, Aspire has successfully completed work on an ambitious three year Development Plan for 2
. This plan relates to the creation and provision of new services to be offered by Aspire, the improvement and further development of existing ones and a focus on research and awareness creation.
ASPIRE MANAGEMENT STRUCTURE/COMMITTEE
A voluntary committee elected every year at our AGM, meet regularly and manage the Association. We also have three full time staff working in the office and four staff working in the residential unit. Aspire is a registered charity (CHY 11438) and a limited company (incorporation no. 231996) and produces audited accounts every year.
Aspire, Coleraine House, Carmichael Centre, Coleraine Street, Dublin 7.
27 / Phone No:
1 873 5283