It started with frustration and continues with hope.
Autism Job Club
Elizabeth Meeting Dr. Temple Grandin
Some Time in Jail
Back in 2012, I started my role as Manager of Communications and Events with HalTech, a regional innovation center located at the time at Sheridan College. I was fortunate to become connected to organizations such as Silicon Halton, the Ontario Centers for Excellence and various service providers. Because of this, I’ve been fortunate to be involved with the tech community for 6 years and attend events specifically regarding tech and tech development.
Fast forward to 2016 and an 18 year old son who’s ready to graduate from high school. During his time in high school, my son Thomas wasn’t able to get a job. We tried a few different approaches but no success. In frustration I went to the library and through happenstance became connected to the Autism Job Club and Maralyn Ellis. That connection would change my life. One because I had not been overly involved with the autism community and two it was eye opening to see the challenges facing the autism community with employment.
It was through this extensive network and being a part of some incredible events and projects that I was able to start putting the pieces of Spero together. Why Spero for a name? Well I had to go to jail to find that 😉
CASDA is an amazing organization that is taking the look needed in to improving services for adults on the spectrum. In order to attend this 3 day conference in Ottawa (it was last minute), I had to stay in the Ottawa Hi Jail Hostel. I’m so glad I did! Not only was the hostel experience really cool (and a great story), I got to hear Jackie McMillan speak. She was part of an adult autism advocate panel and this is part of what she shared:
“All people on the spectrum are looking for is hope. Hope that we’ll be understood. Hope that we’ll have a family. Hope that we’ll be able to keep a job. Hope that we’ll get to experience everything that normal society gets to experience. All we want is hope.”
Spero is Latin for hope and that’s what we aim to give. Excellent tools. Friendly people. Dedicated coaches. And hope.
Thanks for reading!