CARD Provides Free Specialized Services to Arizona Families Thanks to First Things First Grant



A First Things First grant will provide intense,
short term behavioral intervention to families in crisis.

Phoenix, Arizona – June 18, 2009 The Center for Autism and Related Disorders was awarded a $270,000 grant by the Northeast Maricopa Regional Partnership Council’s First Things First program, to provide behavioral health services to 200 families in their region. The grant was created to meet the regional need for short‐term, focused intervention for families whose children ages 0‐5 face significant behavioral, developmental or mental health challenges.

“This grant will allow us to make a significant impact on families,” says grant writer and CARD Research Manager, Dr. Amy Kenzer. “Our treatment professionals have exceptional training and experience dealing with the most difficult cases. I am confident we can give clients and their families’ the training and support they need to overcome the challenges they are facing.”

CARD’s Specialized Outpatient Services Department (SOS) will combine direct intervention services with caregiver training to provide optimal treatment for each family. The treatment process includes an intake evaluation in which the family’s abilities and needs are assessed. Given the family’s priorities, the behavior specialist will conduct appropriate assessments and develop individual treatment plans for common childhood issues. Home‐based, direct intervention will include training parents to implement their child’s behavior intervention plan. At the same time, caregivers will learn useful techniques in group training meetings conducted every two weeks. The combination of childspecific intervention plans along with group caregiver training and family support will help bring each family out of a crisis situation. If successful, this one‐year grant may be renewed for two additional years.
Families that meet certain criteria will receive treatment services and caregiver training at no cost.

General eligibility requirements:
• Children age 0 – 5 years
• Resident of Northeast Maricopa Region
• Family is in crisis due to a child’s behavioral, developmental, or mental health problems
• Children do NOT need to have any formal diagnosis (i.e., Autism) to be eligible

Common childhood issues addressed include, but are not limited to:
• Tantrums
• Non‐compliance
• Aggression
• Property destruction
• Separation issues
• Self‐injurious behavior
• Sleep dysregulation
• Feeding problems
• Toilet training

CARD SOS services will be available beginning July 1, 2009. Interested families are encouraged to contact CARD Phoenix at

About First Things First (FTF):
First Things First (FTF) was established in 2006 to help provide greater opportunities for all children ages five and under, in Arizona, to grow up ready to succeed. FTF’s mission is to increase the quality of, and access to, the early childhood development and health system that ensures a child entering school comes healthy and ready to succeed.

About the Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD):
The Center for Autism and Related Disorders, Inc. (CARD) diligently maintains a reputation as one of the world’s largest and most experienced organizations effectively treating children with autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, PDD‐NOS, and related disorders. Following the principles of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), CARD develops individualized treatment plans for each child. CARD provides services around the globe. CARD was founded by Executive Director Doreen Granpeesheh, PhD, BCBA‐D.

About the Center for Autism and Related Disorders’ Specialized Outpatient Services (SOS):

CARD Specialized Outpatient Services (SOS) Department uses the principles of Applied Behavior
Analysis (ABA) to develop short‐term programs designed to target one or more particular challenges such as behavior problems, feeding and pill swallowing. The goal of CARD SOS is to help individuals achieve long‐term success by developing tools to overcome these challenges. CARD SOS is designed to serve individuals with and without autism of all ages.


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