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21 October - 17 November
FoSS and ESRC logos

Webinar: What do we mean by ‘belonging’?

Working in partnership with autistic people to understand belonging for suicide prevention

The picture shows the word belonging against a background of abstract art.

Lifelong wellbeing theme

What’s on offer?

The UK Government 5-year suicide prevention strategy for England highlights autistic people as a priority for suicide prevention and recommends tackling feelings of not belonging as an important intervention.

This webinar will provide the opportunity to hear about our research underpinning this strategy, to understand the protective role of belonging. It offers the opportunity to hear cutting edge research exploring social connectedness in relation to neurodiversity and to hear about practical creative initiatives to promote belonging and avoid crisis. You will have the opportunity to share your ideas and views about future research priorities. The webinar is free to attend.

What’s it about?

Our research suggests that promoting belonging is important for suicide prevention for autistic and non-autistic people but may be experienced and expressed differently by autistic people. 

Who’s leading the event?

These events are led by Mirabel Pelton is a PhD student at Coventry University exploring suicide theory with autistic people and Research Assistant at Newcastle University on the Autism Adapted Safety Plan study.  Mirabel’s research is focussed on understanding and preventing suicide amongst autistic adults and her expertise has been called upon by international, national and local policy makers. 

We are pleased to announce guest speakers for the webinar:

  • Dr Rachel Moseley is autistic and a principal academic in Psychology at Bournemouth University. Her research focuses on risk factors and psychological explanations for self-injury and suicidality in autistic people, as well as life stages where autistic people might be especially vulnerable to these outcomes.
  • Jon Adams is self-taught autistic advocate, researcher, polymath artist working cross-platform.  His research includes autistic peer participation, inertia, suicidality, belonging, trauma, mental health and creativity.  Jon is interested in socially engaged community projects whilst working towards solving barriers to inclusion for participants, creatives and audiences.  Jon’s work has been shown in Tate Modern, Royal Academy and Parliament. 

Jon, Rachel and Mirabel are committed to productive partnership between autistic people and researchers to better understand and reduce suicide rates.

Open to


Of particular interest to

This webinar is intended for anyone interested in hearing about this topic, including autistic and non-autistic people, those working or living with autistic people, and researchers.

This webinar is complimented by an exhibition of artwork and a walkin tour from the belonging project, funded by Coventry City of Culture, at Coventry Central Library, 13th-20th November. The exhibition images represent diverse meanings of belonging and connectedness expressed through creative media.  We asked this because we wanted to develop research to better understand belonging to help people have better mental health and wellbeing. There will be a walking tour and informal discussion of the exhibition after the webinar, which can be booked here.

Event booking deadline

12th November 2023.