Dublin gets first ABA Therapy Center to help children with autism

The center was established to help families who have autistic children.
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Dublin gets first ABA Therapy Center
ABA Therapy

DUBLIN, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — There’s a new Applied Behavioral Analysis program in Dublin.

The center was established to help families who have autistic children.

The Essential Pieces ABA Therapy Center is currently serving five children, but 15 are on the waiting list due to lack of staff at the center.

“We’re an actual in-clinic center where the children can come here,” Autism Program Manager Monique Allen said. “There’s not a whole lot of that in this area, especially in Laurens County.  Most people have to travel to Statesboro, Augusta, Macon, Warner Robins, but here in rural Georgia, it’s very rare.”

According to Allen, the center is the first of its kind in Dublin to have Registered Behavioral Technicians (RBT) hold one-on-one sessions.

Brittani Sailem says the center helps the children with social skills, speech and much more.

“I think the kids like it more, being in-clinic,” she said. “It’s a lot for them to do. It’s a lot of opportunities for them, and I think as far being in their homes with them trying to do therapy, it’s kind of like a distraction.”

Only two RBTs work at the center right now. Sailem says the progress of many of the children they service is amazing.

“It’s kind of rewarding to see he’s nonverbal, and I’ve been with him maybe two weeks now, and I’m already getting some stuff out of him.”

Yolanda McKinney’s 5-year-old son Izell Stephens IV was diagnosed with nonverbal autism when he was three.

McKinney says the program has been amazing for her child and her family.

“They’re always calling to update me on what’s going on,” she said. “They send text messages, and my son loves them. I didn’t think he was going to adjust to them, but I think what helped was them being so welcoming.”

The center says the need for ABA Therapy in Dublin is high, so it’s hoping word-of-mouth will help increase staff.

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Categories: Laurens County, Local News, WMGT

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