Founder and CEO, AsIAm.ie
Adam Harris is a 24-year-old social entrepreneur, and founder and CEO of AsIAm.ie, an organisation working to build an Ireland where every person with autism can “live and succeed as they are”. AsIAm.ie provides a central online hub for the autism community and aims to inform and empower those affected by the condition, as well as their families and supporters. Through online engagement with users, AsIAm.ie creates training programmes and campaigns to engage various aspects of Irish life to understand autism better and become more autism-friendly.
Adam founded AsIAm.ie based on his experiences of living with Asperger’s syndrome, a condition on the autism spectrum. He spent three years in special education and five in mainstream primary education with the support of a special needs assistant (SNA), and completed secondary school without the support of an SNA. As Adam benefited from early intervention, he felt the need to do something to give back to the autism community in Ireland. He felt that a poor online presence and a society that does not truly understand the condition were key elements of the challenges people with autism face, and they needed to be addressed.
Today, Adam is a frequent contributor to media and conferences at home and abroad, discussing autism issues and the need to have a whole-community approach. A Social Entrepreneurs Ireland awardee, he sits on the board of Specialisterne Ireland and a number of statutory consultative committees.