I’m really excited this week as the plans move forward for Alphabetically Autistic. We are now an official social enterprise. A lot of people have asked me what a social enterprise is and for me the easiest way to describe it is ‘we work – society benefits’. Simple as that. It’s like getting paid to do good deeds. It’s a place to channel energy into your passion for change. So for the first time in my life i’m a director! and it’s not director of hideous luck or director of cheap shoes.
Have you ever bought the Big Issue? Read it over a bar of Divine chocolate with a cup of Cafe Direct coffee? Watched Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen? Visited the Eden Project? Shopped at the Co-op?
Well, then you already know a bit about social enterprises: businesses that are changing the world for the better. Social enterprises are in our communities and on our high streets – from coffee shops and cinemas, to pubs and leisure centres, banks and bus companies.
Social enterprises trade to tackle social problems, improve communities, people’s life chances, or the environment. They make their money from selling goods and services in the open market, but they reinvest their profits back into the business or the local community. And so when they profit, society profits. www.socialenterprise.org.uk
We will educate in schools via our Theatre of Education and short films, hold practical autism awareness sessions with guest speakers from the autistic community, The Life of Reilly stage play, counseling for people on the spectrum and their families, business awareness sessions and also sell some great products. We are developing ideas constantly to generally raise the bar with acceptance and understanding of autism.
Why a social enterprise? Holding and keeping a job is so difficult with an autistic child. Reilly has only just been full time in the last year but no morning is ever the same. If I had to clock in at 8.30am every morning I can guarantee it wouldn’t happen and I need a job, really really need a job. Why not channel all the ideas that fly around in my wide awake head at 4am and make a difference with the added bonus of paying the mortgage and profits reinvested to further our cause. I know my fellow directors feel the same. I give a lot of my time (unpaid) to mine and Kelly’s charity North East Hearts with Goals and I have 3 children one of which you know really well, the human whirlwind that is Reilly. Future plans do I think Reilly will ever work and live independently? I really don’t know and that’s why I need to work now and try and have everything in place for him.
To make Alphabetically Autistic work we need your help. As a social enterprise we can fundraise to carry out these activities we can also apply for grants. To make this dream a reality we must raise enough funds to actually start up for practical things. Marketing materials etc.
That’s where you come in.
Crowdfunding for Really Reilly is a platform for community projects to achieve their aims. We have a page to get Really Reilly into schools as soon as possible. These performances will enable knowledge to flow naturally outside of school to local parks etc where autistic children are often mocked.
If you live locally and want to support us come along to our Rocking the Spectrum night. Guaranteed to be a great night and help us get kickstarted.
Please get behind us and make this happen. Come to our events, book into our sessions when we release them and share our work xx