Neurodiversity is a relatively new term to me, after the diagnosis of my son at the age of 9 with Autism, Dyslexia and maybe Dyspraxia I took more of an interest into the potential of him getting a job, working in a paid career and the statistics I must say for a parent are shocking.
Definition of Neurodiversity: While some people are Neurotypical, meaning that their brain functions and processes information in a way that society expects it to, around 1 in 7 people in the UK are Neurodivergent, meaning that their brain learns, functions and processes differently. Neurodiversity is an essential form of human diversity.
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, ADHD, Dyscalculia, Dysgraphia and Tourette's all fall under the heading of Neurodiversity.
Fast forward five years and I have spent the past 18 months researching the topic from a work perspective, following thought leaders on the subject, increasing my network to learn from the best, attend conferences and read, learn and read some more. One stat to share is that there are only 16% Autistic people in full time employment. There are some fabulous advocates out there, some with a diagnosis themselves and others who have not. I class myself as with lived experience due to the daily experiences I learn from my son and his friends at the specialist school & college he attends. The work experience week in school in 2020 just before covid was amazing with local employers filling up the hall.
Last December I decided to set up a work experience opportunity for my son and his friends at school with an online book shop www.carrottree.co.uk. This helped me understand from a young persons perspective some of the challenges they may have navigating through the recruitment & selection processes, onboarding, colleague awareness and general work life equilibrium.
I am now working with a number of companies, panels and associations on this subject. My passion in life driven by my son is to increase the number of people with a neurodivergent condition into the workplace without lots of bells and whistles because NeuroD's are accepted for who they are and processes are more inclusive for everyone.
If you would like to discuss further for your business then please give me a call 07922 644104