friendship and activities for young people with ASCs

Autistic children and young people are brave, brilliant and creative, but they can often face significant social and sensory challenges, leading to anxiety and isolation. 

Aspire runs youth clubs and support for autistic children and young people. Our clubs reduce social isolation and improve the lives and mental well-being of those who attend. We currently support around 140 children and young people and this number is increasing all the time as new families contact us. 


Young people who have benefited from our support told us: 

“I have found my people” 

“I have learned a wide variety of social skills” 

“It's really lovely to be able to meet and socialise with people who have similar challenges and can relate to my experiences. I feel much less alone.” 


Following a survey of young people and their parents in summer 2021, we know that Aspire has a positive impact on young people’s mental health and wellbeing:

  • 98% of young people enjoy attending Aspire
  • 93% of parents say that their children feel less lonely thanks to Aspire
  • 97% of parents say that Aspire enables their child to feel more connected to others
  • 97% of parents say Aspire gives their child a place where they belong
  • 89% of parents say that Aspire makes their child feel more optimistic positive or hopeful in their life
  • 99% of Aspire parents say that the support of Romsey Mill helps improve their child's wellbeing
  • 97% of parents say that Aspire gives their child something positive to do away from their family

Parents also told us: 

“Attending Romsey Mill’s Aspire group has literally turned my child’s life around. Having somewhere to go where he can be himself and is understood has made him a more happy, confident and resilient person… his future is suddenly looking a lot brighter.” 

“From the moment he started attending he was happier and seemed to carry less of a burden, he seemed lighter somehow, like he’d finally found a place where he belongs and seems a little less lonely in the world.” 


If you would like more information or refer an autistic child or young person to our services, please contact or call the Romsey Mill office on 01223 213162. 

To access our support a child needs to: 

  • Have an autism diagnosis 
  • Be in mainstream school, in year 5 or above (up to age 18) 
  • Live in Cambridge city or South Cambridgeshire. 

Please be advised that we receive a high number of enquiries and referrals for Aspire and operate waiting lists for many of our groups

We've written a simple, illustrated story How does it feel to have autism? Download it here.