About Us

Thriving Autistic is a volunteer-led, not-for-profit committed to empowering and promoting the human rights of Autistic and otherwise neurodivergent people through a transformative shift away from the traditional medical and charity models towards a human rights-based approach.

We are based in Ireland and work throughout Ireland, UK, Europe, and the global community.

Mission Statement

Our mission is to advocate for the rights and dignity of Autistic and otherwise neurodivergent individuals by fostering inclusive communities, providing support services, and promoting the neurodiversity paradigm and the social model of disability.

Our Vision

We envision a world where:

  • Autistic and neurodivergent individuals of all races, genders, and backgrounds are recognized, respected, and valued for their inherent worth and unique perspectives.
  • Autistic people's communication styles, developmental trajectories, and individual definitions of a "good life" are understood, appreciated, and supported.
  • Varying support needs are acknowledged, met, and adapted to, recognizing that individuals may excel in certain aspects of life while requiring assistance in others.
  • Support needs are understood to fluctuate; a person may thrive in one domain while struggling with day-to-day tasks, and this duality is accepted without judgment.
  • Accessibility is proactively incorporated into all aspects of society, recognizing diverse needs and fostering an inclusive environment without the individual having to request accommodations.
  • Society moves away from the medical and charity models, embracing the social model and a neurodiversity-affirming human rights framework that empowers Autistic and neurodivergent individuals to lead fulfilling lives on their own terms.

Our Core Values

  • Inclusivity
  • Empowerment
  • Respect
  • Collaboration
  • Continuous Learning

Our Leadership

Founded by Tara O'Donnell-Killen in 2020, Thriving Autistic became a registered non-profit in May, 2021 with the support of Jessica K. Doyle as co-director.

CEO: Tara O'Donnell-Killen

Administration Assistant: Joanie Moral

Head of Training: Claire O'Neill

How We Are Funded:

We are deeply grateful to all of our funding partners who have supported our mission to promote the well-being and human rights of autistic and neurodivergent people. To date, we have received funds from the following sources:

  • Fees from psychology clinics, including the Adult Autism Practice, Childversity and Affinity Psychology, for providing post-diagnostic support services.
  • Funds from the EU for implementing programs tailored to Autistic youth in 2022.
  • Funds from Galway Autism Partnership to run a "back to education" program designed for Autistic adults in 2021.
  • Funds from the charity AsIAm to run post-assessment support services for Autistic adults and families with Autistic children in 2022.
  • Voluntary Donations from some attendees at our monthly community meetups and 6-week post-identification support programs
  • Donations from our founder, Tara O'Donnell-Killen, for her speaking and training engagements

Moving forward, we aim to secure additional government funding sources, enabling us to develop more programs that benefit the autistic community.

Financial Transparency

We believe in maintaining openness and transparency regarding our financial operations. Please follow this link to access the certified, revenue-filed accounts for our first year, up to April 2022. It's important to note that our directors and CEO serve in unpaid capacities, reflecting their commitment to Thriving Autistic's mission.

Fundraising Statement

Thriving Autistic CLG is a registered non-profit organisation focused on promoting and protecting the human rights of Autistic and otherwise neurodivergent individuals. As such, we are not eligible to register as a charity under Irish law.

However, we are committed to upholding the highest standards of ethical fundraising practices, and as such, we follow the principles and guidelines for best practice outlined by the Charities Regulator’s Guidelines for Charitable Organisations on Fundraising from the public.

Our fundraising activities are carried out in an open, transparent, honest, respectful, and accountable manner, and are always underpinned by an appropriate legal framework.

If you would like to donate to support our work, please click here

Open Roles

Volunteer opportunities: We are currently seeking volunteers to support our mission in various areas, including fund grant writing, bookkeeping, advocacy outreach, social media, and media relations. If you're interested in getting involved, please contact us by emailing hello@thrivingautistic.org

Paid opportunities: While we don't have funding for permanent or part-time positions at the moment, we are committed to promoting employment for neurodivergent practitioners through our free referral directory. We offer a platform to showcase your services at no cost to you. Click here to add a listing and join our community of professionals.

Programs & Services

Our organization offers a range of programs and services to support Autistic and otherwise neurodivergent individuals and their families, including:

  • Training and professional development opportunities for neurodivergent people in the psychology, coaching, and therapy professions
  • Workshops for organizations and mental health professionals on the neurodiversity paradigm, the social model of disability, intersectionality, and minority stress
  • Support services for Autistic adults and parents of Autistic children