Penn Foundation’s Family Autism Center offers the community much-needed services for children and adolescents on the autism spectrum and their families. For more information, call our Family Autism Center at 267.404.5988.
Note: The Indian Valley Public Library is currently developing a new program for children with special needs and their families. This program would involve a sensory friendly play group with an opportunity for peer interaction. It would also feature special guests from local organizations that provide services for children with special needs. In order to help with their planning, we are asking parents and caregivers to answer some questions about their child’s needs. Please fill out as much information as you are comfortable sharing. Thank you for your assistance with this program! Click here to complete the brief survey.
Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
ABA is a specific methodology that will be added into the Family Autism Center’s current behavioral services. ABA is used to help children acquire skills such as language, self-help, and play; it is also used to help decrease behaviors such as aggression, self-stimulatory behaviors, and self-injury. Services are provided in home, school, and community settings by trained staff under the supervision of a Board Certified Behavior Analyst.
Autism Diagnostic Evaluations
We conduct a comprehensive assessment of each child. Each assessment includes a developmental interview with the parents/primary caregivers, an observation of the child’s behavior using the ADOS-2, administration of measures assessing for other childhood disorders, and a review of the child’s records (i.e., IEPs, previous evaluations, medical evaluations, etc.). An evaluation report is reviewed with and provided to the family, which includes diagnostic impression and recommendation for services.
Meet Our Licensed Psychologist – Julie Worley, PhD (pictured)
Julie Worley, PhD, completed her doctoral training at Louisiana State University. Her predoctoral internship was at Johns Hopkins/Kennedy Krieger Institute, where she used Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) to treat children admitted to the Feeding Clinic or Developmental Disabilities Clinic. Her postdoctoral fellowship was at the Center for Autism Research at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. During her postdoctoral training, Dr. Worley completed diagnostic evaluations assessing for symptoms of ASD and other commonly co-occurring conditions. Most recently, she worked at one of the Philadelphia Autism Centers of Excellence.
Weekly services are available to children and adolescents ages birth through 21 in home, school, and community settings to help treat emotional, behavioral, and psychiatric concerns.
The treatment team includes a Licensed Psychologist, Licensed Behavior Specialists, Mobile Therapists, Therapeutic Staff Support, and Case Managers all trained in supporting children with autism spectrum disorders and their family members.
Treatment is directed by individualized treatment plan goals with re-evaluations occurring every 4 months. Community resources and natural supports are also utilized.
Outpatient Family Counseling
Counseling services are available to children/adolescents and their family members. An individualized treatment plan will guide the course of treatment. Clinicians who work with children and adolescents specialize in the treatment of children/adolescents on the autism spectrum.
Parent / Caregiver / Extended Family Workshop
A series of six to eight workshops for parents/caregivers and extended family members is scheduled throughout the year to provide psycho-education and resources on various topics related to autism spectrum disorders, such as therapies.
Psychiatric evaluations and medication management are provided by a child and adolescent psychiatrist with expertise in supporting children/adolescents on the autism spectrum.
Used as one part of a comprehensive treatment plan – not to be used alone – medication prescribed by the psychiatrist is used to treat specific symptoms associated with ASD including, but not limited to, hyperactivity, inattention, aggression, and self-injury.
Resources on topics and services related to autism spectrum disorders are made available to professionals and other community members.
Sibling Support Group
One-hour sessions will be run by a therapist and held weekly for 6 weeks for children/adolescents with siblings diagnosed on the autism spectrum. Themes will be included in each session, and siblings will learn about ASD, coping with stress, and improving sibling relationships. Siblings will have the opportunity to meet with peers and engage in interactive activities.
Social Skills Group (Coming Soon)
Group-based social skills sessions will be run by a therapist to help strengthen social interaction and communication skills. The group will incorporate a specific social skills curriculum. Skills will be developed through use of schedules, themes, visuals, group activities, and/or expressive arts including movement.