Simpatico Peer Mentoring Pilot Program

Transitioning to adulthood can be a challenging time of life. There is a significant need for autistic young adults to find meaningful connection, friendship, guidance, and support from autistic peers who have navigated this time period. Mentorship programs help, but few have been created with autistic young adults and for autistic young adults. AANE was inspired to launch this program based on the vision and experiences of autistic individuals within our community.

What is Simpatico?

The Simpatico Peer Mentoring Program is an exciting, new AANE pilot initiative being developed to provide peer-to-peer mentorship for autistic adults between the ages of 18-30 years old who are seeking meaning and engagement in their lives. The intention of this program is to provide opportunities that lessen the feeling of isolation prevalent within the autistic population through experiences that will yield companionship and a supportive community.

What is the vision?

The vision for Simpatico is to be a mentorship program exclusively for autistic adults to provide purpose, guidance, and support. Ongoing get-togethers will allow all participants to discover lasting connections and feel increased self-worth and value. As we gain insight through participants’ interviews, listening group forums, and surveys, we will begin to define suggested activities, frequency of meetings, and group outings.

Where is it?

The Simpatico Peer Mentoring Pilot Program is currently based in metro Boston, MA with the intention that all paired participants in the program can meet in person and occasionally all together as a larger group when public health and safety recommendations allow.

Why did AANE choose the name Simpatico?

The word simpatico originates from the Greek word meaning sympathetic, and in both Spanish and Italian, simpatico means affable and likable. In English usage, simpatico means “having a personal affinity, being in sync with each other”...a simpatico relationship.

How you can help!

Since this is a pilot program in development, we are not accepting applications for membership at this time. However, we would greatly appreciate your participation by participating in an upcoming free listening session, which you can access below. These will be meaningful opportunities for you to share what you would most like to see in this peer mentoring program.

 

Click to learn more about upcoming listening group forums and to register:

Check back for a survey coming soon!

To learn more about Simpatico, you can email Simpatico Program Managers, Jay Eveson-Egler at Jay.Eveson-Egler@aane.org and/or Pam Palmucci at Pam.Palmucci@aane.org.

Acknowledgement and Gratitude

We are profoundly grateful to the Andrew Family Foundation for their inspiration and investment in this program and to our leader and former Executive Director Dania Jekel, for pushing us forward. Dania’s vision made this partnership and The Simpatico Peer Mentoring Pilot Program possible.