Survey to help autistic people find gainful employment

Survey to help autistic people find gainful employment

Summary: Do you have a loved one or know someone who has autism? If so, do take a survey that aims to help these individuals in Singapore find gainful employment.

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Do you have a loved one or know someone who has autism? If so, do take a survey that aims to help these individuals find gainful employment.

I've been supporting efforts by a Danish company, Specialisterne, which hires and trains people with high-functioning autism so they can acquire the relevant IT skills and eventually find meaningful employment.

These individual have unique skills such as strong memory, attention for detail and perseverance in carrying out repetitive tasks, which are highly suitable for IT companies that need skills in software testing, code checking, data entry and quality control.

However, because it touches on a sensitive subject and one which some families may find difficult to deal with publicly, very little quantitative data on persons with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is available and pretty much non-existent in Singapore.

The survey hopes to address this and gather valuable insights that will then help Specialisterne formulate an employment model that's suitable here. One of the questions, for instance, explores what happens to a person with ASD after finishing school.

Run by YMCA Singapore and supported by the National Council of Social Services and NUS Chua Thian Poh Community Leadership Programme, the study is targeted at people with ASD and who are of employable age, or 16 years and above.

Specialisterne has operations in Scotland, Iceland, Austria, Switzerland and the United States, and plans to open an office in Singapore, which it hopes will serve as a springboard to expand its efforts to Asia.

If you reside in Singapore and are interested in participating in the survey or efforts in helping individuals with ASD, leave a comment here or contact Alissa Rode at projectautism@ymca.org.sg or call +656586-2205. Details of survey participants and responses will be kept anonymous and confidential.

Topics: Social Enterprise, Singapore, IT Employment, Tech Industry

About

Eileen Yu began covering the IT industry when Asynchronous Transfer Mode was still hip and e-commerce was the new buzzword. Currently based in Singapore, she has over 16 years of industry experience with various publications including ZDNet, IDG, and Singapore Press Holdings.

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3 comments
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  • Intresting.

    My bother is high functioning autistic, sound, he has a photographic memory and very analytical. He can do some complex stock analysis but communicating to others is his problem. The problem I see with him in the US is it seems more money is made funneling him form one government paid program to the next rather than helping him to proved for himself, sans probably needing to live in a group home.
    Scatcatpdx
  • Being Different can be a Strength

    Many individuals with high functioning autism have various strengths even though they may be weak in their social interaction. Many have great attention to details, likes intellectual challenges and don't mind repetitive tasks. They can succeed in various IT roles such as product testing, data analysis and even programming, with the proper support. Specialisterne have proven with its model in a number of European countries and a US organization nonPareil is also getting good traction training adults on the spectrum to program apps, they have launched couple of apps in App Store!
    KhengWah Koh
  • Apergers ASD

    Thanks for this article. It will be useful for my son.
    He is smart, and I agree, they need encouraged, not put aside.
    Little_White_Dove_76