The Socialites works with young people who have left school who need a more personalised programme of opportunities beyond school. Directed by the young person’s interests, we can work with the person’s support staff team and family to devise something that fits particular needs.



We worked with Jordan whose interests couldn’t be met in a college or day centre. He was skilled in using a computer to create digital images and use Youtube, but his interests weren’t met by mainstream further education curriculums.

He wanted something which didn’t exist – a course composed of meaningful subjects like infinity, dinosaur fears, painting with foam, drumming and dance routines. Jordan needed to work on his own, and so his family and the social work department found a space he could work from, supported by Autism Initiatives staff.

In order to expand opportunity, the team began using his interests to try short trips out, testing out places he was comfortable in.

To develop knoweldge and networks, Artlink provided specialists like digital designers and musicians in his chosen subject areas to teach something new. We organised sessions with a drummer, animator, film maker, sculptor, paleobiology professor, cabaret performer, illustrator and hot air balloonist.

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Jordan has recently started learning how to drum with weekly lessons. He is working with musician Cammy Sinclair in a professional rehearsal studio.

Jordan has learned to read drum notation and will present his work in a concert for family.

This work is funded by Midlothian Council and National Lottery Year of the Young Person. In the past, we’ve been supported by The Scottish Government’s Autism Innovation Fund and Better Breaks.