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Resources for Adults with Autism

A Guide to Transitioning to Adulthood

The transition from secondary school to adulthood is a pivotal time in the lives of all students. For a student with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) change of any kind can be challenging.

The purpose of transition planning is to ensure that all children with disabilities have available to them pathways and related services designed to meet their unique needs and prepare them for further education, employment and or independent/assisted living.

Early planning leads to a successful transition period. In practical terms, the earlier the transition process starts with thoughtful planning, good information and open communication with a “transition team” the more successful this transition will be, thereby reducing anxiety on everyone involved. We would recommend starting your transition plan when your young adult is 15-16 years old.

Effective transition requires an individual detailed plan that includes some or all of the following:

  • Establish a Transition Team for your young adult. The transitioning period works best if it is a collaborative process. Team members will include: parent/guardian, teacher, principle, psychologist, social worker, occupational guidance officer (HSE), social worker, OT, Speech and Language therapist etc and anybody that you feel is relevant
  • Assessment of your young adults needs, interests and abilities
  • Statement of preferences for education, employment and adult living
  • Identify responsible people or agencies to help with achieving your young adult’s goals
  • Outline the steps needed to be taken in order to achieve the above goals
  • Clarification of how roles will be co-ordinated
  • A plan for identifying and obtaining the necessary funding
  • Timeline to evaluate and review transition progress


Adult Autism Services

Adults diagnosed with ASD have access to a range of autism-specific services including Day, Residential and Respite Services, Further Education and Assisted/Independent Living.

The below booklet from the NCSE outlines these pathways in detail. It is important for parents/carers and individuals with a disability to make themselves fully informed and aware of all the choices in order to make the most suitable choice for post school options.


Adult Further Education Options for People with Disabilities

Increasing number of people with disabilities are graduating with higher education qualifications. This is because more support and services are now provided in line with student’s needs.

The following are some of the organisations that offer further education options to people with disabilities in Co. Louth and Co. Meath


Day, Residential and Respite Services, Further Education and Assisted/Independent Living

New Directions is one of the key policy documents contained in the HSE Transforming Lives Programme. It sets out sets out twelve supports that should be available to people with disabilities using 'day services'.  It proposes that 'day services' should take the form of individualised outcome-focussed supports to allow adults using those services to live a life of their choosing in accordance with their own wishes, needs and aspirations.  There is a structure set up within the nine HSE Community Healthcare Organisations (CHO) nationally to implement New Directions.  These CHO New Directions Implementation Groups have representatives from every HSE funded adult day service provider within the CHO area.

You can contact New Directions at or logon to the website to find out more information.

The HSE Funded Adult Disability Day Service Locations - Midlands Louth Meath Community Healthcare Organisation


HSE Occupational Guidance Officer for Co. Louth and Co. Meath

Martin Mc Sorley


Phone: 087 6759529


Service Providers of Day, Residential, Respite and Assisted Living in Co. Louth and Co. Meath

Autism Support Louth & Meath host an annual Post 18 School Options Expo for People with Special Needs. This event is aimed at giving parents and young adults an opportunity to find out more about service providers and educational institutes, meet with key staff members, discuss transitioning and have any questions or concerns answered. By attending this event and other service provider’s open days, you can help to alleviate some of the anxiety that parents and students experience around transitioning from school to the next stage in their adult life.

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