A new song was released to mark World Autism Acceptance Week (April 2 to 8), and it is the brainchild of two autistic NHS colleagues from Cornwall.

Ian Summers from Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and David Kirwan from Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust are the driving force behind ‘Welcome Home’, which grew from a simple conversation about how to promote autism acceptance.

“We wanted an uplifting, hopeful and positive song,” said David. "Everyone involved gave their time freely, because we all believe in supporting positive change.

"The takeaway is that there is hope and that inclusion is important - for everyone. The title of the song means: ‘You have arrived, you are home again, with the people who understand you’. That understanding goes wider than just the autistic community.”

The song was written and performed by singer and confidence specialist Lucy Cox, using language shared by the trusts' autism and neurodiversity networks.

As a parent of autistic children, Lucy was "in with both feet" as soon as she heard the idea. "It is important that people really listen to the lyrics of this song,” she said.

“For those who do not directly understand the autistic experience, try to empathise with how it must feel to believe you don’t fit in and there’s no place for you.

"As for our wonderful autistic community, I want them to listen to the words and feel a sense of hope - to believe there is so much more good stuff ahead, and to feel heard and seen.”

All money raised from the release of the song will go towards The Hugs Foundation, a Bodmin-based equine rescue charity that provides wellbeing support to a range of people.

"The song resonated with everybody in the Hugs team,” said youth service manager Hazel Ashman. “We know it is going to mean so much to so many.

“As a charity, we have helped over 700 children, but we can’t deliver what we do without support. This song means a lot to us - we are so excited.”

Welcome Home is now available on Spotify. Lucy has also set up a fundraiser on Just Giving.