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Staff Spotlight: Meet Alexis

Meet Alexis! Alexis is a Registered Behavioral Technician at our Mishawaka center, where she has worked for a year. She is a graduate of Indiana University and holds a degree in Psychology. As an RBT with Lighthouse Autism Center, Alexis is responsible for working one-on-one with children with autism and implementing therapy programs designed by Board Certified Behavior Analysts. She helps children work on refining previously learned skills and helps them develop new communication, social, living skills and more!

ABA Therapist

What made you want to apply to work at Lighthouse?

I wanted to work somewhere where I could help kiddos live their best life.  I knew I could do that at Lighthouse Autism Center.

Tell us about your favorite part of working with your team at Lighthouse.

Honestly, my favorite part of working with my team is being able to be myself around them, inside or outside of work. Whether it’s making jokes or needing support, they are always there.

Can you share a favorite part or memory about working with the Lighthouse kiddos?

My favorite memory is hearing one of our non-verbal kiddos finding their voice. The list words he knows went from zero to almost 30 seemingly overnight. I may have shed a tear or two hearing him talk.

How would you describe your Lighthouse experience?

It’s been the most supportive environment I’ve ever worked in. The staff, the seniors, and our PM’s are just all so friendly and easy to get to know.

In her free time, Alexis enjoys painting to help her relax.  She paints on canvas and on miniatures, which are only one inch tall!

Lighthouse Autism Center is hiring! To view a list of available positions visit www.lighthouseautismcenter.com/jobs.

Staff Spotlight: Meet Katie Beth

Meet Katie Beth! Katie Beth is a Registered Behavioral Technician at our Granger center, where she has worked for a year and a half. She also has a degree in ministry and theology from Atlanta Bible College. As an RBT with Lighthouse Autism Center, Katie Beth is responsible for working one-on-one with children with autism and implementing therapy programs designed by Board Certified Behavior Analysts. She helps children work on refining previously learned skills and helps them develop new communication, social, living skills and more!

autism therapist

 

Tell us about why you applied for a position with Lighthouse.

I have always had a passion for working with kiddos and helping people.  Since I knew that I wanted to be able to make a bigger impact in the lives of children with special needs, Lighthouse seemed like a natural fit! My aunt has Down Syndrome and she has been an inspiration in pursuing a career in this field.

Can you share a favorite part or memory about working with your Lighthouse teammates?

I love how supportive and encouraging my teammates are.  Coming to work is easy when you have such a wonderful group of people to share the day with.  I would not be able to do what I do without each of them!

Can you share a favorite part or memory about working with the Lighthouse kiddos?

The best feeling in the world is when you look back on when a child first started and see just how much they have achieved in their time with us.  It is such a joy to be a part of their lives and help them grow!

Outside of work, Katie Beth enjoys spending time with her husband and their rescue dog Sage.  She also enjoys photography and hiking. 

Lighthouse Autism Center is hiring! To view a list of available positions visit www.lighthouseautismcenter.com/jobs.

Staff Spotlight: Meet Tiffaney

Meet Tiffaney! Tiffaney is a Registered Behavioral Technician at our South Bend center, where she has worked for two and a half years. Tiffaney also has a degree in Psychology from Indiana University South Bend. As an RBT with Lighthouse Autism Center, Tiffaney is responsible for working one-on-one with children with autism and implementing therapy programs designed by Board Certified Behavior Analysts. She helps children work on refining previously learned skills and helps them develop new communication, social, living skills and more!

 

Tell us about why you applied for a position with Lighthouse.

I wanted to apply to work at Lighthouse because I wanted to be able to use my degree to impact lives and know I am a part of something bigger.

Tell us about your favorite part of working with your team at Lighthouse.

One of my specific favorite memories was during a transition to school day with one of our kids. We were in a completely new environment and without any help they were able to communicate their needs. It reminded me how hard these kids work every day and how what we all work on is implemented into their daily lives.

How would you describe your Lighthouse experience?

I would describe my Lighthouse experience as life changing. The kids that I have worked with over the years have taught me so much. I have experienced growth in my own life, and I have the privilege to see the growth in the kids’ lives as well.

In her spare time, Tiffaney enjoys taking care of her six pet bunnies and writing.

Lighthouse Autism Center is hiring! To view a list of available positions visit www.lighthouseautismcenter.com/jobs.

Tips for House Hunting with Your Child on the Spectrum

Moving is always a stressful and complicated endeavor. But when you have a child on the autism spectrum, the thought of packing up your household and moving somewhere new can seem like a near-impossible task. Parents often worry that their children will get overwhelmed by this major transition, and rightfully so. Children with autism thrive on routine and stability — everything that moving is not!

child and parents moving to new house

Are you looking for guidance? The clinical team at Lighthouse Autism Center presents this informative guide to assist families preparing to move. Whether you’re still in the process of house-hunting or you’re already packing up your home in anticipation of moving day, the following tips will help keep support your child through the process.

Establish Your Home Buying Budget

Raising a child with autism can pose a significant financial challenge for parents, even with the help of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. It isn’t easy to manage the costs of equipment, supplies, medication, childcare, education, and therapy services.

So are you prepared to handle the additional expenses involved in buying a new home, selling your existing property, and moving? Redfin recommends creating a realistic home-buying budget before you start looking at properties. Calculate how much mortgage you can afford by adding up your ongoing expenses and subtracting these from your household income. The rule of thumb is to keep your housing costs less than 28% of your before-tax income. Once you have a better idea of your home affordability, research home prices in your area to find out what kinds of homes you can afford on your budget.

Look for Specific Home Features Conducive to Your Child’s Needs

Ready to start looking at homes? Get in touch with a local real estate agent who can help you scout properties that will best fit your family. Keep an eye out for features that may appeal to your child and your family’s life style. Things to look for might include making sure there is a fenced backyard, double-pane windows to dampen noise from outside, and even considering if there are pools, ponds or bodies of water nearby.

Making a Moving Day Plan

Moving day will always feel a little hectic, no matter how much planning you do. Help keep your child calm and content amid the mayhem by giving them your full attention. Hire professional movers so you can ensure that all of your possessions make it to your new home safely while you spend time with your child. Some movers offer activity packs for children, so be sure to ask about this when you call for quotes. When you arrive in your new home, unpack your child’s room first so they can start regaining some sense of normalcy right away.

Keep Your Child in the Loop

The most important thing to remember as you prepare for your upcoming move is to keep your child in the loop. Children with autism feel more comfortable when they know what to expect. Parents.com recommends broaching the subject early so your kid has plenty of time to process the idea of moving. Highlight some things that your child can get excited about, like a bigger bedroom or backyard where they can play. Help your child visualize the days leading up to your move by writing down everything on a dedicated moving calendar.

Remember: continuous communication is key! Review your moving schedule every day, read children’s books about moving, and offer plenty of positive reinforcement when your child makes it through a day that deviates from their normal routine.

When it comes to moving, things rarely go smoothly — and that’s okay! Be prepared to go with the flow and respond to issues as they arise. Monitoring your child for signs of stress and anxiety is vital. Do what you can to prepare ahead so you can focus all of your attention on your child before, during, and after your move.

Interested in learning more about therapy resources that can assist your child with autism? Contact  Lighthouse Autism Center at 574-387-4313 or visit www.lighthouseautismcenter.com/contact-us.

Access Behavior Analysis Joins the Lighthouse Autism Center Family

Lighthouse Autism Center is pleased to announce the acquisition of Access Behavior Analysis, one of the most well-respected ABA providers in central Indiana. Headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, Access is a center-based ABA provider that operates four centers in Indianapolis and surrounding areas. Founded in 2013, Access specializes in offering an integrated therapy approach that fuses ABA and Speech Therapy services into one treatment from a dually-certified provider.

“Access has a strong team with impressive clinical experience and expertise.  Their deep passion and reputation of providing high-quality ABA services to children with autism align perfectly with the Lighthouse’s mission and values,” said Gregg Maggioli, Lighthouse’s co-founder and CEO. “We are excited to welcome Access to the Lighthouse family.”

Janine Shapiro, co-founder of Access commented that, “the operational, clinical, and moral imperatives that our organizations share will allow us to create a unique synergy that will bring the very best clinical services to children and families across Indiana and beyond.”

To learn more or inquire about services please visit www.lighthouseautismcenter.com/contact-us.