2013 Summer Camp Opportunities

Autism Speaks has awarded $225,000 in scholarship funds to a total of 113 camps to allow financially disadvantaged children and young adults with autism to attend camp this summer through the Baker Summer Camp Program! This program selects eligible camps in the United States to identify qualified campers and offer scholarship funds for financially disadvantaged children with Autism Spectrum Disorder to attend a summer camp. In the past 4 years, the program has funded almost 1,500 camp scholarships, totaling $695,000 awarded by 200 different camps in 31 states! Click here to find a camp in your area.


Fresh New Way to Connect

At Behavior Frontiers, we are always striving to offer resources and information to our families, care providers, instructors, team members and staff. We found a fantastic way to collect all the information in a convenient and visual way. We have created a Pinterest account for Behavior Frontiers. You can review our top picks - in the way of "pins" - for everything from playtime ideas, teaching tools, parenting help and inspiration. We have encountered an endless supply of fun and fresh new ideas to spark creativity, to find that ONE perfect activity to connect with a child or to find that one word of inspiration and motivation that will get you through the day. We hope you'll join us there.


New Rate of Autism Now 1 in 50

"The new autism rate of 1 in 50 is astounding! Now more than ever, individuals with autism and their families need help accessing effective ABA treatment. Our government representatives need to take action to ensure adequate funding is available for individuals with autism to receive research-based, ABA treatment so children with autism and other special needs can reach their full potential." — Helen Mader, M.A., BCBA, Founder and Executive Director


Hope Park - An Inclusive Play Adventure - Frisco, TX

There is something new in the community of Frisco, TX. It's called Hope Park. Imagine a playground built to suit the needs of all children, at any age, with a focused consideration for children with special needs – an inclusive play adventure that brings children together and helps them build self-confidence, make friends and play as equals. 

Hope Park’s design will be interactive, evoking a sensory play experience that engages children at many developmental levels. Please visit here more information and how to become involved or help with the park.

Build week is coming - April 5-14, 2013



Behavior Frontiers is Now an In-Network Provider for ValueOptions Inc. in CA

We are pleased to announce that Behavior Frontiers is credentialed an in-network ABA provider for ValueOptions Inc. in California. ValueOptions Inc., the nation's largest independent behavioral health care and wellness company, specializes in management for all behavioral health issues, and mental health and chemical dependency diagnoses. Their work is driven by a guiding principle of improving behavior to improve health with clinically appropriate and cost-effective solutions that advocate and promote good behavioral health, as well as help proactively manage wellness and disease. Read ValueOptions ABA policy here.


Autism Friendly Halloween - A Parent's Guide

Halloween is an exciting and much anticipated holiday tradition for children of all ages (and some adults, too). Halloween is a time to be anyone you want to be: Wonder Woman, The Incredible Hulk, or maybe even Spongebob Squarepants. Friends, family members, and strangers give out candy and treats just because you say “Trick or Treat”. Who isn’t excited when September becomes October and Halloween is rapidly approaching?

For parents of children with Autism, Halloween can be a time of doubt, worry, or frustration. Doubt about whether or not to include little Mike in the Halloween festivities. Worry about if little Nathan will keep his costume on. Frustration that little Sarah doesn’t behave like the other trick or treating children.

A diagnosis of Autism does not mean your child can’t participate in Halloween. Children with Autism can learn to participate in Halloween festivities with some assistance and a little pre-holiday preparation. Give yourself plenty of time before the holiday approaches to start preparing for the accommodations your child may need in order to have a fun and safe Autism friendly Halloween. Below are some simple steps you can take to make Halloween a less stressful time for everyone.

1.     Costumes
Let your child have a choice in their Halloween costume. Many children with Autism have sensory deficits that affect how comfortable they feel in certain pieces of clothing. A cape that is tied around the neck may be out of the question or a full mask that covers the entire face might be frightening. It’s better to know in advance about all of the potential setbacks rather than on the day of Halloween. Have your child try on a few costumes and observe to see if they pull or tug at the costume, or want to remove it after a few minutes. If your child refuses to wear any costume, consider letting them trick or treat in pajamas or regular clothing.

2.     Candy/Treats
Many children with Autism have food allergies or sensitivities or may be on special diets. If candy is out of the question for any reason, consider asking neighbors and friends to give them stickers, baseball cards, or non-candy food treats such as cheese crackers. You can also only take your child trick or treating to homes of family and friends, so you can control what is given to them (such as gluten-free pretzels).

3.     Trick or Treat Routine
A child with Autism may appear to be uncomfortable or unwilling to greet people as they open their door, make eye contact, say “Trick or Treat”, or hold out their bag/bucket.  Even if your child has participated in trick or treating in the past, they may need help with the routine. Set up expectations in advance by preparing them 1-2 weeks before the holiday using stories, visual reminders, movies, or photographs. Review memories from past Halloweens and remind him/her about trick or treating, costumes, candy, and how to behave when trick or treating. Watch a movie or cartoon about trick or treating and have your child practice saying “Trick or Treat” or if your child has limited language, have them hand you a card that says “Trick or Treat”. Visuals, such as a poster, can help children with Autism understand complex or abstract concepts. Go over this information several times before the day approaches. On the night of Halloween remind the child of the routine as needed. For example, as you approach someone’s front porch say to your child “Okay, first we go knock on the door, and then what do we say?”

4.     Safety
Safety is a concern on Halloween for all children, but especially for children with Autism. Take all necessary precautions to ensure that your child remains safe at all times. Be sure to dress in bright colors if you will be trick or treating at night. Go to familiar, brightly lit neighborhoods where the homes are close together. Avoid dark, heavily wooded, or unknown areas. Place a sticker or some other identifying mark on the costume especially if your child wanders away and doesn’t respond to their name. Be sure to hold their hand tightly especially when walking in crowds. Periodically remind your child during trick or treating that they must stay with you, and provide a big smile or praise when they follow your instructions.

5.     Take someone with you
Bring a spouse, a friend, caregiver, aide or a family member with you as you take your child trick or treating. Halloween night is full of noisy children, colorful costumes, candy and treats to carry, and lots of people outside, and a child may become overwhelmed or overexcited. If this happens, it will be a great help to have someone else there to help manage your child’s behavior.

6.     Have fun!
The last tip is to relax, have realistic expectations, help your child participate as fully as they can, and to remember why you are doing this: to have fun with your child. If your child has a tantrum in a neighbor’s yard or throws their mask into some bushes, that’s okay! The point of taking your child trick or treating is so they can learn to enjoy the Halloween festivities as much as other children do. Be sure to laugh often, tell your child they are doing a great job, and eat lots of chocolate.


Disney Offers Discounted Tickets for Residents with Permanent Disabilities 

Disneyland has a program for California residents who have permanent disabilities. They offer discounted tickets for specific dates each year. In 2013 the Tickets will be available for select weeks in January and February.

If you are interested in purchasing tickets, email the following information to Noly Guardamondo, MFT, Director of Operations and Children's Services at nguardamondo@ucp-oc.org by Wednesday, October 3rd

• Full Name of the person with the disability
• Full Name of the parent/caregiver
• Email
• Phone Number
• Fax Number (if available)
• Mailing Address
**You will NOT be paying for these tickets at this time.

Please note, Community Involvement Program tickets are to be used for Guests with disabilities and their immediate families. The tickets will only be valid for a day during your pre-selected week. For more information contact Noly Guardamondo, MFT, Director of Operations and Children's Services

United Cerebral Palsy of Orange County
980 Roosevelt, Suite 100
Irvine, California 92620
Direct: 949.333.6428 / Fax: 949.333.6440
email: nguardamondo@ucp-oc.org web: www.ucp-oc.org


Treatment for Autism - Los Angeles

Behavior Frontiers' headquarters is expanding services for the treatment of autism in the Los Angeles area. We have expanded our team, promoted experienced team members and provided additional training to our entire staff. In addition, we have implemented a new free and secure insurance verification process that streamlines the start of services and helps reduce the stress and burden of finding the right treatment team for your child. Our services are based on Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), an approach considered to be at the forefront of interventions for children with autism. ABA therapy is widely recognized as the single most effective treatment for children with an autism and the only treatment shown to lead to substantial, lasting improvements in the lives of children with autism. Find out more about of LA office here.


Summer Promotional Group Pricing - Limited Time


The Behavior Frontiers Online Training Center is currently offering special group pricing for a limited time. The most flexible and convenient way to learn the ABA methods relevant to effectively interacting with students with autism or other special needs.

Visit the training center for more information and email NWakefield@behaviorfrontiers.com for more details and pricing.


Blog Wrap Up from Autisable

Thank you to Joel at Autisable for stopping by our booth at the National Autism Conference. He wrote a nice blogpost about his visit and Behavior Frontiers. He is just a part of the growing Autism Community sharing his experiences and offering a platform for like-minded people who want to connect and tackle the puzzle of Autism. Read the entire post here...