Articles

Why Neurodiversity Works for Creativity

Why Neurodiversity Works for Creativity won the 2019/2020 WPP Atticus Award in the Creativity with Purpose category. An excerpt was published in The Atticus Journal on 10th November 2020, and was originally published on the Amy Walker Writes Medium blog on 14th November 2019 Amy Walker is Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator at GroupM, and founder of Neurodiversity Works. She is diagnosed with autism, dyslexia and dyspraxia, as well as mental health and physical conditions. We know creativity works. We know innovation works. We know that purpose works. In this essay, I will demonstrate that neurodiversity works, for creativity, innovation, purposeContinue reading “Why Neurodiversity Works for Creativity”

Looking For A Job With Autism Made Me Feel Like I Was On The Scrap Heap of Society

Originally published in the Huffington Post for Autism Awareness Week on 12th April 2019 I dropped out of school due my autism, mental health conditions and difficulties with friendships and bullying in year eight — and have been playing catch up ever since. Around 700,000 people in the UK are autistic and yet just 16% of autistic adults are in full time paid employment. Every year this employment gap costs the UK economy millions of pounds — and beneath this lies so many personal stories of frustration and wasted potential. There are many barriers preventing young autistic people from accessing theContinue reading “Looking For A Job With Autism Made Me Feel Like I Was On The Scrap Heap of Society”

Graduating from Scope for Change

Originally published on the Amy Walker Writes Medium blog on February 15th, 2019 Amy Walker is a neurodiverse, autistic, dyslexic and dyspraxic campaigner, who has been on the Scope for Change campaign training programme since 2018. In this article, she describes the programme’s graduation ceremony and the campaigns that were talked about during the event. On the 14th of February, the #ScopeforChange campaigners graduated at an event at Portcullis House, part of the parliamentary estate 😳 It’s always been a dream of mine to visit the parliamentary estate — especially Portcullis House, with it’s atrium which can be viewed fromContinue reading “Graduating from Scope for Change”

A Week of Speaking Up, a Year of Building Confidence

Originally published on the Amy Walker Writes Medium blog on November 26th, 2018 This time last year, if you had told me that I would be speaking publicly on a regular basis, frankly I would not have believed you. I had just finished a two week Autism Exchange internship in the Civil Service, which had filled me with hope and helped to prepare me for work. But I was still unemployed, still finding it hard to juggle graduate scheme and job applications with meeting my own basic needs, and struggling to cope with the demands of my family relationships. InContinue reading “A Week of Speaking Up, a Year of Building Confidence”

Mental Health Awareness Day: My experience

Originally published on the Amy Walker Writes Medium blog on October 10th, 2018 Yesterday I spoke at A New Direction’s event, Partnerships, Co-production and Compromise. I shared my experience as a young creative, finding my way through an educational system that was inaccessible to an autistic person from a challenging background, and the help I’ve had from Create Jobs, Balance CIC, Ambitious about Autism, Autistica, The Prince’s’ Trust, Hillcroft College, Scope and Time to Change in accessing opportunities to thrive. This time a few years ago, my life was looking very bleak. I had been on Employment Support Allowance (ESA),Continue reading “Mental Health Awareness Day: My experience”

Campaigning with the Scope for Change programme

Originally published on the Amy Walker Writes Medium blog on September 7th, 2018 A few months ago I was honoured to find out I had been chosen as a #ScopeForChange campaigner. I had been having a tough few months, not getting far with job applications and suddenly a bunch of opportunities arrived at once: the three month internship at m/SIX through the Autism Exchange scheme, and the Scope opportunity. I was thrilled! #ScopeForChange is a 6 month programme to train and support young disabled people in campaigning. It has been going on since 2015, and I heard about it through the Ambitious about Autism YouthContinue reading “Campaigning with the Scope for Change programme”

Kanye West comes out as bipolar. Here’s why it matters

Originally published on the Amy Walker Writes Medium blog on June 1st, 2018 You would have to go far to find someone who hasn’t heard about Kanye West’s recent antics. A flurry of tweets over the past few months created a furore bigger than any Kanye has experienced in the past. On previous album rollouts we’ve seen what some people have described as “arrogant” or “attention seeking” behaviour. Some of those people put it down to a marketing strategy, others to Kanye’s uncontrollable self indulgence. But as soon as the music comes, the antipathy gives way to a common agreement:Continue reading “Kanye West comes out as bipolar. Here’s why it matters”

Supporting young people with autism gain Civil Service experience

Originally published in edited form on the Civil Service Blog for World Autism Awareness Week 2018 Autistic people have ‘special interests’: subjects about which they are passionate and knowledgeable. My special interest is current affairs and policy, and so when I saw that Ambitious about Autism’s Autism Exchange programme was running a placement in the Civil Service, I jumped at the chance! At this point I was working voluntarily building a start-up micro record label with my partner, after graduating with a first class photography degree in 2015. I was responsible for marketing and social media management, which I had taught myselfContinue reading “Supporting young people with autism gain Civil Service experience”

Getting my Autism Diagnosis

Originally published in edited form on the Ambitious About Autism blog for World Autism Awareness Week 2018 My name is Amy, and I am a female on the Autistic spectrum. My parents began suspecting I was different early on. I learned everything about certain subjects, but I wasn’t that interested in playing with dolls or other children. When I did play, I would act like a director, telling the children what to pretend to be, and pointing out unrealistic scenarios. This could upset the other children, but I didn’t understand why, and so I would get angry or refuse to play. IContinue reading “Getting my Autism Diagnosis”

My experience of the Autism Exchange Civil Service internship with Ambitious about Autism

Originally published on the Ambitious about Autism blog in November 2017 Autistic people tend to have ‘special interests’: subjects about which they are passionate and knowledgeable. Well, my special interest is public affairs and policy, and so when I saw that Ambitious about Autism’s Autism Exchange programme would be hosting a placement in the Civil Service, I jumped at the chance! Up until this point I hadn’t engaged with Ambitious’ services or looked at the Autism Exchange, and was self-employed working on building a start-up micro record label: working on marketing and social media management after completing my photography degree a coupleContinue reading “My experience of the Autism Exchange Civil Service internship with Ambitious about Autism”

About Me

Amy Walker is an autistic, dyslexic and dyspraxic campaigner, speaker, writer, researcher, consultant and diversity and inclusion professional.

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