The Friendship Project

A 12 month project to make a series of videos for people with intellectual disability, made by and with people with disability about making and keeping friends.


DDWA is excited to announce the launch of The Friendship Project, an ILC funded grant initiative, designed to help young people with intellectual disability build skills and the confidence to make positive friendships.

Over the course of 12 months (2021-2022), we will be developing a series of online video resources co-designed with a reference group of young people with intellectual disability. We’ll also seek the views of parents and support workers on what they see as some of the issues and challenges the young people they support face in making and growing friendships.

To launch The Friendship Project, DDWA hosted an ‘On the Couch’ event on Thursday 15th April to explore some of the big issues around making friends and where young people with intellectual disability were  invited to share their friendship experiences.

In addition, we will be seeking expressions of interests from young people with intellectual disability to participate in The Friendship Ideas Group, which will help explore, test and shape the content of the online resources during the development and production stages of the project

For more information

Call Alison or Hannah at DDWA on (08) 9420 7203.

picture of couch group friends sitting together

People with intellectual disability often face some significant barriers to making and keeping friends, and may experience loneliness and social isolation. Friends enrich your life and improve your mental health and ability to bounce back from many of life’s challenges, but good friends and social connection can be hard to come by. So, how can we make and keep friends?  This project aims to find out and create some helpful resources to support people to make and keep friends.

Some themes we are exploring

Image describing 5 different themes the project is exploring

Ideas shared at the launch.

You could ask them questions like 'Do you want to go out for food? Yes. What do you like?'... 'They could be vegetarian and you don’t know unless you ask them'

Some hard things about making friends, 'Its difficult to make friends because I’m shy and I’m scared of rejection. I like the other person to make the first move'... I find it difficult to find the right words to say'.

Some places where people have made friends, 'We met at horse riding classes which then progressed to a coffee meet up. We kept in touch via text'.... 'I have made friends through dancing'.... 'at the dog park'.

You know they want to be your friend because they want to stay with you, they want to listen.

The Ideas Group

The Ideas group was formed in July and will meet regularly over the coming months.

During these meetings people with intellectual disability are sharing their ideas about how to make and keep friends.

These ideas will be made into a series of videos and supporting resources about Friendship.

The resources will be made available at the end of the project in 2022.

Friendship Project Events

When there is an event coming up, it will be advertised here.

Events are free.

If an event is advertised, you can register online via the event page or call DDWA on (08) 9420 7203.