Supported Travel for Youth , Agnes is on a mission and is making a difference.
If the pandemic has taught us anything, it definitely made us see how much we took our ability to travel for granted. But for some people, being able to travel independently has never been easy, let alone accessible.
supported travel for youth
Agnes and Elise.
Agnes Abelson, who is originally a nurse and has supported people with disabilities for 11 years, is familiar with this sentiment. Her sister, Elise, was diagnosed with autism late and Agnes is acutely aware of the difficulties her sister suffered because of her hidden disability. She says that “Elise is funny, clever and talented, and like many other people her age, is keen to have friends and to travel”. However, Elise is dependent on her family when it comes to travelling due to her support needs. Like most twenty-somethings, Elise wanted to be able to socialise and experience the world independently, but there was no service available to assist her with this.
supported youth travel
Agnes’ frustration at the unfairness of her sister’s situation, and others like her, prompted her to start Travengers in 2019. Travengers is a bespoke travel business for 15 to 35 year olds who are autistic or have hidden disabilities. They organise group trips for like-minded young people supported by Support Workers/Guides, who have experience in this area. Alternatively, travellers can ask for a private, supported trip. There are a variety of destinations to choose from including Byron Bay and the Great Ocean Road.
Whilst the business is relatively new, (and has obviously been affected by the pandemic at times), the feedback for Travengers has been encouraging, with attendees thoroughly enjoying the experiences. Agnes says, “I love seeing these young people coming out of their shells and chatting with and finding others who have similar hobbies to them. Many of those who have come to Travengers have attended mainstream schools where they felt different, so it is exciting for them to socialise with people who ‘get them or share their interests”.
More than just supported youth travel.
Alongside travel opportunities, Travengers also organises social events, such as attending the outdoor cinema, singing lessons and more. There are also weekly virtual trips to exotic destinations with related activities, like trivia, and the ability to be social online. The online trips are available to young adults anywhere in the world.
Through their travels, Agnes hopes the groups will meet other mainstream travellers and tour operators, and in that way create opportunities for more interactions. Agnes is passionate about advocacy for, and the acceptance of autistic people. Through speaking and meeting with tour operators and other travellers in their travels, she believes Travengers has the potential to create a ripple-effect of awareness and acceptance. To find out more about Travengers, visit their website: https://travengers.com.au/
Free off to join the next virtual travel group now.
Want to join the next virtual trip? Sign up now and join in the next virtual travel group session Wednesday 7pm – 7.45pm Use code KOTS22 at checkout.
Register then make sure you tag us and let us know how you went @kidsonthespectrum
autism social groups