A primary resource for peer support for school age children can be found in student clubs. A common goal is to create a community that is educated about autism and empowers students to pave the way for acceptance and understanding. By starting or joining a student, members take active roll in their community. Through various activities and peer mentoring, members make their school and community a better place for those affected by autism.
Generally, student clubs are guided by three goals: education, awareness and fundraising.
The first goal is learning more about autism. Students can spend several weeks educating themselves and presenting information during the club meetings about this developmental disorder. An integral part of peer support is sharing or listening to personal experiences that members have related to autism.
The second goal is raising awareness. Members may plan various activities including decorating bulletin boards, making announcements, leading lessons, planning for guest speakers, developing fact sheets, or writing letters to the newspapers. By taking the information they have acquired and spreading it to the school and community at large, members can create a friendly and welcoming environment for their fellow students with autism.
A final goal is to raise funds through fun and interactive activities, while learning how to create a large impact, even in small ways.