Gheel Autism Services was founded in 1971 by parents of people with autism. We provide services for adults with autism in the greater Dublin and North Kildare region. Here at Gheel, we provide day, residential, supported living and outreach services for adults with autism with the goal of maximising independence and enhancing quality of life for all of our service users. All of our programmes are tailored to recognise the unique individuality of persons with ASD.

Mission Statement

Gheel Autism Services are committed to delivering quality and safe services, which embrace and support unique individuality of persons with autism as valued members of society.

Our Autism informed services aims to:

  • Support and embrace difference
  • Design individual person-centred services
  • Facilitate family and community involvement
  • Promote evidence-based practice and training
  • Respect the Privacy and Dignity of each individual
  • Provide people with choices, not boundaries
  • Live a low arousal philosophy
  • Monitor and audit our services in line with best practice
  • Give people a life, not just a service

Gheel’s Philosophy

The spirit of our philosophy here at Gheel is captured in the following words:
“If you would help me, don’t try to change me to fit your world. Don’t try to confine me to some tiny part of the world that you can change to fit me. Grant me the dignity of meeting me on my own terms – recognise that we are equally alien to each other, and that my ways of being are not merely damaged versions of yours. Question your assumptions. Define your terms. Work with me to build more bridges between us.”
(J. Sinclair: Personal Essay – High Functioning individuals with autism E. Schopler, G. Mesibov, 1992).


Gheel’s values are Dignity, Respect, Empowerment, Diversity and Integrity. Here at Gheel, we endeavour to live and work by these values in our interactions with our Service Users and with each other.

Gheel Autism Services is a company limited by guarantee with charitable status CHY 7345.

You can download a copy of our 2016 Financial Statements here.


The term ‘autism’ is derived from the Greek word ‘auto’ which means self.

Autism is an enduring development condition that impacts the areas of social interaction, communication and information processing. It is a spectrum condition that means while people share certain characteristics, their needs and preferences will be highly individual.

Everyone’s experience of autism is unique to them from subtle difficulties to more complex needs. It is through an understanding of these needs and challenges that we can support our Service Users to reach their full potential. Our low arousal approach is the cornerstone of our philosophy here at Gheel which ensures that we respect each individual’s autism and allows them to be who they are. It is also the philosophy we use when interacting with each other as colleagues.

We do not view autism in terms of its deficits but more positively we like to think of people as having differing abilities and strengths in essence we prefer to describe people in terms of what they can do. Most importantly of all, people can have different ways of seeing and experiencing even the most simple every day events. We believe that it is really important to try and view the experiences of a person with autism from their perspective. Think of it this way, if a person speaks a different language try to learn their language, don’t teach them yours first. Our day to day experiences of people with autism reinforces our belief in their individuality.


Day Services

Gheel operate a number of day services in Dublin 3, 6, 9 and Dublin 15. The aim is to deliver a service that provides every Service User with an individually tailored programme of life skills, employment training, social skills and education with a strong emphasis on community inclusion, as to enable as much independent living as the person would like.

Each person that attends the day services chooses goals that they would like to work on. These goals are generally chosen from a wide range of areas such as life skills, social skills, future planning, physical skills, education and employment. The service supports people to maximise their independence, utilise their strengths and abilities and be active members of their community.


Gheel specialises in providing residential services in a personalised home-like atmosphere for our Service Users. Our residential services are spread across the greater Dublin area and also in North Kildare. Our Service Users live in the community in traditional community houses, self-contained apartments and single person occupancy homes. The support needs vary per Service User ranging from 24 hour support to less complex needs. Both supports emphasise the development of independent living skills, achieving individual goals and encouraging our Service Users to be active participants in their local community.


The aim of Outreach is to provide a service that supports people to live enriched lives through inclusion and integration within the community. This is done through an outreach model of service provision, individually tailored to each person. We provide opportunities for people to develop and progress in an individual setting and a group setting.

This service is needed in order to support individuals with ASD who have gone through the mainstream education system, both at second and in some instances, third level. These individuals require a different type of support than the traditional day service model. The goal of this service is to help adults with autism to transition to independent living and learn valuable skills to function in society. We believe that it is important that the support that we provide enables/motivates our services users to achieve whatever it is they set out to do. We have Outreach services in North Dublin and North Kildare.


All referrals for Gheel Autism Services come from the HSE (Health Service Executive) through the relevant HSE Disability Manager. The referrals are then managed by the ATD Team (Admission Transfer Discharge) within Gheel. The team meets on a monthly basis or more often as required to process all referrals received. The ATD team then set actions for the assessment of need for the individuals concerned to align against the organisation’s statement of purpose/organisational plan.

Employment Opportunities

Here at Gheel everyone works on the basis of a low arousal philosophy and our values form an integral part of who we are and what we do. Gheel Autism Services currently employs approximately 200 people in various capacities and locations across the organisation. We are regularly on the lookout for like-minded individuals to join our team and applications are always welcome.

We advertise our vacancies on www.irishjobs.ie, www.activelink.ie and our Facebook Page fb.me/gheelautismservices and Twitter pages. We look forward to hearing from you!

Gheel Autism Services are an equal opportunities employer.

Contact / Donate

For general enquiries please contact our team in Head Office in Ballycurraghan, Maynooth, Co Kildare on 01 6291596 or by email to info@gheel.ie.

If you wish to support Gheel Autism Services please contact us on 01 6291596 or via email at info@gheel.ie. All donations received will directly benefit our Service Users. Thank you for your support.