Why Autism Friendly Spaces & Places?

Imagine every day walking into your home or your workplace and it was in discord with who you are?

Imagine if every time you wanted to relax, to learn, to enjoy, you couldn’t.

“Every man’s home is his castle.” Imagine if your castle was full of dragons.

Imagine when the lights turned on, the dragons glared at you with eyes of fire. And when the temperature changed, those dragons spewed forth licking flames or paralysing ice. Dragons that smell so bad you didn’t want to breathe, that constantly lung at you, follow you, never leaving you in peace and everything was chaos – and you couldn’t escape.

Now imagine walking into a room where you felt at peace, you felt uplifted or excited, you felt calm or restful. You felt safe.

Spaces and places have the ability to create different feelings within ourselves. Spaces and places that are designed well, not only function in a practical way but have the ability to nurture our soul and cater to all of our individual needs.

People on the Autism spectrum are sensitive to many things in our environment that those of us who are neuro-typical don’t even notice. All environments should be designed with thought and care to ensure every member of our family and community is respected, nurtured and safe. Every single room should provide an environment where everyone is encouraged to thrive and wholeheartedly welcome.

Welcome to this online space, a place where I will share all things Autism-friendly spaces and places and Fellowship.

A little about us...

Building Designer. People Person.

Shelly Dival


With over 20 years of experience in building design, I work closely with my clients to create special spaces and places. I am an accredited designer and an active member of industry associations, in which I have also judged, and been judged on many occasions, and am a proud Churchill Fellowship recipient. My clients have included local Government, businesses and families. After my grandson's diagnosis of Autism and the subsequent discovery of the work being undertaken overseas, I'm passionate about setting a new standard for inclusive building design in Australia and to be a researcher of specialised building design for individuals on the autism spectrum. My practice, Front Door Building Design, is based in the Perth Hills region of Western Australia, where I live with my very fluffy dog who thinks he is human, and a regal Burmese cat who thinks he is a dog. I'm a historical romance tragic and, once my rambunctious grandchildren go home, I enjoy the odd glass of medicinal grape juice.

Autism Friendly Building Designer
Intrepid Adventurer. Organiser. Assistant.

Jasmine Hart

As a recent graduate of Murdoch University, I've completed a Bachelor of Communications with a double major in Communication and Media Studies and English and Creative Writing. In 2015-16 I attended CEU Universidad San Pablo, a private university in the heart of Madrid, for a semester as part of the international exchange program to continue my education in digital communication in a global context. During my time at university, I have gained valuable skills in professional and creative writing, digital content and editing, and excellent critical analysis and communication skills. As a member of my university's PR student chapter, PURE (Public relations at Murdoch University), and during my time as a volunteer at WA AIDS Council, a local not for profit organisation, I've gained experience in social media and audio-visual content creation, curation and copywriting. I'm very excited and honoured to accompany Shelly during her Fellowship awarded research project travel, helping in any aspect that I can (sometimes that means squishing a tightly packed bag closed!).

Marketing & Communication

Join us on our travels.


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