About the Ottawa Adult Autism Initiative


Who we are

We are a grassroots group who received a seed grant from Ontario Trillium Foundation for this work. Our members include adults on the autism spectrum (adult ASD community), family members and allies, and professionals.

Grassroots Consultation

How we work

We work in a way that is:

  • Respectful – of all members of our community
  • Inclusive –of people with varying communication and other needs
  • Diverse – gathering viewpoints from different backgrounds and orientations
  • Collaborative – with existing service providers and professionals
  • Transparent – sharing our information and findings with the community

Our goals

  • To make it easier for adults on the autism spectrum and their families to find the supports and services they need.
  • To create a new way for the adult ASD community, families, allies, service providers and professionals to connect to ensure needs are met.

We will not replace any existing supports or services

What we know

We know we need input from adults on the autism spectrum and those who live and work with this community. We also know that our adult ASD community needs a new way to more easily connect with the supports and services needed.  We are committed to a community-driven approach that connects existing supports and services and helps develop those missing.

We don’t yet know how the “new way” will look. That is the focus on our first year of work (fall 2019 to fall 2020). We will develop an approach that is tailored to and driven by the unique needs of our Ottawa community.

Our work

Phase 1: Building a strong knowledge base (fall 2019 to fall 2020)

We are building a strong knowledge base. We will listen to the experiences, knowledge and opinions of adults on the autism spectrum, family members and allies, service providers and professionals. We will gather this information through community outreach sessions and an online survey.

Community Snapshot

The result will be a “community snapshot” that documents the met and unmet needs of our adult ASD community. Our work includes looking at approaches other communities have created to support adults on the autism spectrum.

Phase 2: Creating a new way to connect, collaborate and coordinate (fall 2020 and beyond)

Using the knowledge base we created in Phase 1, we will seek more funding to create a new way to bring adults on the autism spectrum, their families and allies and the supports and services they need together in a more accessible way. We will work to find the funding to make this vision a reality.

Using knowledge base to create something new

We need your help!

We want to hear about your experiences, your opinions and your perspectives. To build a strong knowledge base we need wide participation of the local adult ASD community. We also want to hear from professionals and service providers who support adults on the autism spectrum.  

Here’s how you can get involved:

  • Join a community outreach session – These have been postponed to Fall 2020 because of the COVID-19 public health crisis: check the community outreach page on our website for more details
  • Take our online survey – Our survey is now open online (visit the survey page and follow the links). The survey will remain open until the end of December 2020 so that all members of the Ottawa adult autism community will have a chance to share their perspectives, opinions and experiences.
  • Stay informed – Join our email list for regular updates and information about upcoming outreach sessions and the online survey launch. 
  • Help spread the word – Share our website and information with your networks.

Click here for the OAAI Privacy Factsheet with more details about how the OAAI project will use information and protect your privacy.

This project is supported by a grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation