This week, Dame Caroline Spelman MP joined autistic campaigners and charities to celebrate the launch of Molehill Mountain, the first ever evidence-led smartphone app aiming to help autistic adults understand and manage their own anxiety.
Almost 8 in 10 autistic people experience mental health problems like anxiety or depression. Helping people understand the causes of anxiety and the reasons for their symptoms is key to managing it better, but many autistic people find that existing resources and therapies are not adapted for their needs.
Molehill Mountain is based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) approaches that have been adapted for autistic people. It was designed by autistic developers and based on research from King’s College London and Autistica, the UK’s autism research charity.
Dame Caroline Spelman MP welcomed the app, saying: “1 in 100 people in Meriden are autistic, and the Molehill Mountain app could make a real difference to their everyday lives. It’s brilliant that Autistica and King’s College London have developed such a practical and engaging tool.”
Jon Spiers, Chief Executive at Autistica, explains: “Too often autistic people receive inappropriate anxiety support and sometimes they’re unable to access any support at all. We wanted to offer something practical that can be used whenever and wherever it’s needed. Many autistic people have a real affinity with tech and our autistic testers and developers told us that personalisation was important, so an app seemed like the perfect solution.”
Molehill Mountain is available in the Apple App Store now, with an Android version coming soon. The app is accompanied by a digital learning package on anxiety and autism, which is available from the Autistica website and includes an email course and supporting web content.