Progression to Independence



D is a 16 year old with a diagnosis of autism. He has an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) but attends a mainstream secondary school in Bristol with support in place.


D comes from a large family and has a younger sister also with a diagnosis of autism, who attends a specialist school in Bristol. Autism Independence stepped in to support the family following on from a bereavement. D’s nan, who was the only family support system to D’s mum, a single parent of eight children, She was struggling with her mental health and the loss of  her mum. A


How we supported D


We worked with compassion and empathy, supporting the family holistically, by assessing all of their needs. We visited the family home and went through emails and their paperwork. D’s mum was struggling to sort through this herself, due to her loss. Prior to doing this we ensured we had signed consent from the family to act in the best interests of D.


Autism Independence read through the EHCP to see if there was any changes or updates that had to be made at the next annual review. We then made contact with D’s school and other professionals involved in his support to inform them of the issues the family was facing.


Supporting aspirations


D is a lovely young man that likes to spend time with his mum and siblings. We talked to him about this and also about what is aspirations and interests are. We spoke about different pathways into higher education, college and apprenticeships that were available to D. D decided that he would like to attend college. With support D chose Progression into Independence course at City of Bristol College.


We made an appointment to visit the college with D’s mum. This was also an opportunity for D to ask questions or to raise any concerns. It transpired that D had a lot of very important questions especially around break times and dinner times.


Thriving in education

We supported D to apply by filling out the enrolment form. Shortly after this, D received the good news that he had obtained a place and was going to start that coming September. The team supported D on his first day. We were there to make sure he felt confident and safe in his new surroundings.


D is now in his second year. He is a well loved student and is thriving there.


Becoming an ambassador


We recently visited the same college with another young person who is hoping to attend the same course. We met up with D who was on hand to give lots of helpful advice and information and to let the other young person know they can be friends when they start.


Because of this we then asked D if he would like to be an ambassador and speak to future students wanting to attend the same college and who may be anxious or apprehensive. D was more than happy to take up this new role as a buddy to any new students. We are very proud of the progress he has made.


Thank you to our funders


This project is funded by Bristol Impact Fund.