'I was sick of being put in a box' - Hull teen with autism starts campaign and podcast

Adam Nielsen is a disabilities campaigner who will study hairdressing at Wilberforce College
-Credit: (Image: Adam Nielsen)

A Hull teenager who believes he has faced discrimination due to having autism has begun an inspirational campaign and podcast to encourage people with disabilities to aim high.

Adam Nielsen, 17, will study hairdressing at Wilberforce College in September and says he is thriving. But he said he has been rejected for dozens of jobs which he believes is due to having autism.

Talking about what motivated him to start the campaign Be Proud Be You HEY, Adam said: "So obviously I have autism and I was sick of being put in a box. I was always told 'You can't do this and you can't do that'. I set it up in December and it's sort of grown."


He added: "I am a person and I'm more than my disability. I'm trying to get businesses to get in touch and find out how to be more inclusive but it's hard, people are not interested in our stories."

Before he signed up for his college course, Adam tried to get hairdressing work. He hit a lot of dead ends and often didn't hear back. He said: "I want people to know they can have their perfect career."

He said businesses can help disabled people "by just supporting us and not writing us off". Adam is inviting businesses to contact him via his Be Proud Be You HEY Facebook page to discuss how to be more inclusive. Also, anyone who wants to help the good cause can follow the page and share it.

Adam added: "I just want to support them and make sure the opportunities work for everyone and are not excluding anyone." Adam has also set up his Beyond Limits podcast on Spotify which explores disabilities and SEN.

He said it will discuss education and employment and aims to change society so people with disabilities can achieve their dreams and find the right place for them.