Autism Spectrum Australia

Social networks

Social Networking Program: Establishing Community Social Groups

Aspect has supported local communities to establish their own social groups for adults with high functioning Autism by linking interested members with one another and through online facilitation training.

Social groups may take many forms, and reflect the interests and wants of the participants.  For example, social groups may:

  • meet regularly at a local coffee shop for a catch up
  • meet at different places in the local area to participate in a range of activities (e.g. movies, bowling, dinner)
  • have a more formal, support-group approach where participants discuss a set agenda item each time they meet

Typically, these community-based social groups are organised by a community member, parent, or participant.

Establishing a new social group

For individuals (both those with autism and those without) who would like to establish a social group in their area, please follow these steps:

  1. Download this brief guide to running a social group
  2. If you are uncertain about your facilitation skills, you may like to use our free online facilitation training. This has been specifically designed to assist those with autism
  3. Register your interest in facilitating a social group by completing this form
  4. Contact the individuals and hold a first group meeting
  5. Should you require any assistance or support at any point – either before or after you establish a group – please contact Customer Service or 1800 ASPECT (1800 277 328)
Joining a social group

If you are an adult (over 18) with Asperger's/HFA and would like to be contacted if someone else is establishing a social group in your area, please register your interest. Your name and contact details will be passed on to a facilitator in your area once they become available.

Social Networking Dinners

Aspect holds occasional dinners throughout the year, facilitated by an Aspect staff member. These are informal opportunities for adults in the community who have autism to come together and meet one another. From these dinners, people may like to swap details, discuss establishing a new social group, or simply enjoy each other’s company as a one-off.

If you would like to be contacted if we are holding a social networking dinner in your area, please complete this form.

How are areas for community-based social groups chosen?

Areas for new social networks will be chosen primarily based on the geographical patterns of those who have registered their interest in joining a social group. Due to the large geographical range of individuals registering their interest, it is not possible at this stage to meet all demand or contact all registrants. If you would like suggestions of other services currently operating in your area please contact Aspect Customer Service on 1800 ASPECT (1800 277 328).

Safety considerations

Please note that Aspect does not screen nor endorse people who use this website. If you are meeting other participants or a facilitator through this webpage, please take the same due care with regards to your personal safety as you would with anyone you meet through the internet. It is advised to meet in a public place, advise someone of your plans, and consider taking a friend or family member along until you feel safe.

These social groups are strictly for adults 18 years and over. Children should never be left alone with a stranger.

For enquires regarding the Social Networking Program or for further information, please call Customer Service on 1800 ASPECT (1800 277 328) or email us.

Return to adult services

1800 ASPECT (1800 277 328) or (02) 8977 8377

Social networks