Mar 26, 2023, Community Impact: Q&A with Apara Autism Center: Delivering one place for everything autism in San Antonio https://communityimpact.com/sponsored/sponsored/2023/03/26/qa-with-apara-autism-center-delivering-one-place-for-everything-autism-in-san-antonio/
When a child is diagnosed with autism the path forward can seem enormously challenging and confusing. In this Q&A, Nicole Ercan, Clinical Director of Apara Autism Center in San Antonio, discusses how Apara Autism Center was founded with the mission of being one place for everything autism to eliminate the confusion and piece-by-piece searching.
What do you want parents to know when their child is diagnosed with autism? Ercan: We want families to know that we’re here to help. Even if it’s just someone for them to talk to if they just got their autism diagnosis. Whether they’re 18 months old or in their teens or a young adult, we have people who can talk them through the process. And if they’re not sure if ABA therapy is right for them. One of the greatest things about Apara is that we’re not just an ABA center, we’re a resource for families….
Does Apara Autism Center offer in-clinic and in-home services?
Ercan: Yes. In-clinic is a lot more structured, and we offer more social opportunities. We work to create social environments in-clinic even though our therapy is one-on-one typically with a registered behavior technician and a client. But throughout that time in our center they will have for example scheduled snack peer interaction. We provide small group circle times and classroom. Obstacle course and story time groups are also available for those children that are working to generalize skills to a variety of structured settings. At Apara we ensure there is time designated throughout the day that is focused on promoting social interactions with peers. In-home services, are typically for children who are working towards transitioning out of the therapy setting to a less restrictive environment. Children that receive in-home may just need a little bit more help generalizing skills in the home or community setting. Families often need assistance with daily routines in the home like personal hygiene tasks, morning routines, or feeding the dog.
What else do you want parents to know about Apara Autism Center?
Ercan: When a client comes to us we work to increase skills so they can transition into a less restrictive environment and improve their quality of life. We begin talking about what that looks like for the family before services even start. We help the child and the family set obtainable goals that can be broken down and taught to increase fluency and independence. It is important that we follow the child’s motivation when working on developing goals so that they can be engage and motivate while learning. We want the children to have a say in their journey, even if they haven’t found their voice yet.