You will need
- Everyone should use the ‘Autism audit’ sheet to think about what an autism-friendly environment could look like. They should split their thoughts into the categories on the sheet: sight, smell, sound, touch and textures, and information.
- Everyone should split into groups of three of four people.
- Each group should think of some places in their local area that aren’t as autism-friendly as they could be.
- All of the groups should share their ideas. Everyone should settle on two or three places they’d like to visit.
- Everyone should find out how to contact the places they chose (for example, searching online for a phone number or email address).
- With an adult, everyone should reach out ask if they could visit and run an autism-friendly audit. They should explain that the audit will point out what the business is already doing well, and what it could do to be more accessible for autistic people.
- Once a place says ‘yes please!’, everyone should arrange the details of the visit.
- With an adult, everyone should run the autism-friendly audit using the ‘Autism audit’ sheet. They should note down everything the business does well and what they could improve on, as well as some (easy, or low cost) solutions.
- Everyone should give the business owner some feedback. They should cover the positive as well as the negative, and make sure the business owner understands why it’s so important to be autism-friendly.
- Everyone should thank the business owners for their time. They should ask them if they’ll commit to making some of the changes they’ve outlined – which ones? Would they write them down and display them to show everyone their commitment?
This activity helps contribute towards some of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. Find out more about the SDGs, and how Scouts across the world are getting involved, here.
This activity was all about helping the community. Why do people think that businesses haven’t already made changes? It’s often because disabled people aren’t thought about when spaces are designed and people don’t know much about making their businesses accessible. What could people do to help make sure more spaces are accessible for disabled and autistic people? Do people think the government should do more to help communities be more inclusive? How could people make this happen?
This activity was also about being a great leader. Was it difficult to speak up, especially to people who may have been older and know more about their business? Why is it important that people take initiative and speak up when they see things that need to change? Did people make a positive difference with this activity?
- Outdoor activities
You must have permission to use the location. Always check the weather forecast and inform parents and carers of any change in venue.
- Hiking and walking
- Road safety
Manage groups carefully when near or on roads. Consider adult supervision and additional equipment (such as lights and high visibility clothing) in your risk assessment.