Identities of Autism is a world-wide campaign exploring the cross-cultural dimensions of autistic identity. The goal is to highlight self-advocates in their power, exactly as they are. Some may use their voice to tell us how they identify or the words that describe what they love about themselves. Some may be less verbal or may choose to not share any words. By just being themselves in front of the camera, their presence IS their identity expression. This is an opportunity for neurotypical people to listen to the autism community. Let the self-advocates teach us. Let us learn how we can honor and best support the neurodiverse.
Autistic individuals are encouraged to represent themselves. IOA strongly suggests family members only speak for themselves in their experience as an autism family member. IOA wants to capture exactly who the individual is, in this moment, without anyone speaking for them.
By employing and consulting with neurodiverse individuals in the production of the project, IOA embraces neurodiverse practices. By providing individuals with their headshots, IOA facilitates autistic employability and the opportunity for the autistic community to promote themselves authentically. Beyond the photo shoots, IOA aspires to create funding that goes right back into the hands of autistic individuals, so they can independently create their own passion projects. IOA is determined to change the 80% autistic unemployment rate by providing workshops so individuals can learn the skills that will create more autistic, artistic work of their own!