Blue twinkle lights, cupcakes and new supports for children with autism.
St.Amant is pleased to celebrate World Autism Awareness Day with the launch of 2 new resource initiatives for families and professionals supporting children with autism.
“The parent support model is a pilot project that will allow a St.Amant consultant to assess children and prepare a learning plan for parents to carry-out at home. These families will also be invited to frequent workshops on understanding autism, teaching strategies, and understanding and addressing challenging behaviours” said Angela Cornick, Director of St.Amant’s Autism & Outreach Programs.
“We have many families on the Autism Early Learning Program wait list. As research shows that intervention should occur as early as possible to make a significant difference in the life of a child with autism – our hope is that this will help bridge the gap while they wait for the for the more intensive behavioural intervention program,” said Angela.
St.Amant is also launching a web resource that will provide tangible tools for parents and professionals supporting a person with autism.
Research clearly indicates the benefits of early intervention. St.Amant Research Centre’s study evaluating the effectiveness of the St.Amant Early Learning Autism Program demonstrates that after one year:
• Communication skills increased an average of 166 % (listening, imitating, naming objects and asking for what they want)
• Social skills improved an average of 130% (cooperation, play and leisure, and social interaction)
• And self-care or personal skills improved an average of 67% (dressing, eating, and toileting)
In addition to these results, since 1998, at least 5 published studies have performed cost-benefit analyses of early intervention. Every study to date has projected a net savings to society for investing in intensive behavioural treatment. The projected costs to supporting an adult with “intensive supports” ranged from $2M to $2.5M, over a lifetime.
“Our hope is that World Autism Awareness Day will shine a light on children with autism and their needs, and on the importance of Research findings in assisting children, adults and families living with autism to achieve their potential,” said Angela Cornick.
Currently St.Amant supports families with Autism Early Learning, School Age Learning, and Parent Support Programs. In addition, the St.Amant Research Centre conduct research in the area of autism.