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Equity Magazine April 2018

SPOTLIGHT: Finding the

SPOTLIGHT: Finding the right support centre for your child is crucial for their development. Discover why Autism Rocks is a seamless fit World Autism Awareness is celebrated on April 2 nd every year, with organisations across the globe gathering for fundraising-and awareness-building events. By definition, Autism is a developmental disorder characterised by complications with social interaction and communication, and by restricted and repetitive behaviour. Signs are usually noticed within the first two or three years of a child’s life. The UAE has played an integral role in raising awareness on Autism. Sanjay Shah and his wife Usha launched Autism Rocks in the UK in 2014, after their son Nikhil was 24 EQUITY

diagnosed with Autism at the age of two. The unique venture fused music and autism to raise awareness and funds for autism research. The UK-registered charity have since hosted performances with musical icons including Prince, Lenny Kravitz, Michael Bublè, Drake and Flo-Rida, to name a few. If the name Autism Rocks sounds familiar, it’s because you probably attended the Ed Sheeran or Elton John concert at the Autism Rocks Arena near Dubai Outlet Mall. Currently in its first operational year, Autism Rocks Support Centre at Dubai Healthcare City began as a support centre for Nikhil, and has now become the go-to facility for families seeking guidance and assistance for their loved ones. Why? Mainly due to their carefully handpicked team of professionals that offer one-to-one therapy for children up to 18 years old. Finding a centre that understands the child and parent’s needs isn’t an easy task, here in the UAE. Autism Rocks caters to the demand, while providing expertcare and dedicated attention for personal growth and development. Services at the centre include ABA (Applied Behavioural Analysis) to teach children essential interaction skills; Speech-Language Therapy, Occupational Therapy, School and teacher consultation services, School Shadow/Learning Support Assistants, parent and professional training, and Registered Behavior Technician (RBT®) training for those keen to pursue a career within the sector. The centre’s vision is to successfully notice an improvement in each child’s life, supporting them while they reach their utmost potential. With this in mind, Usha has hired some of the finest professionals in the industry, with her clinical team now comprising a PhD Level Psychologist, two Board Certified Behavior Analysts (BCBA®), Registered Behavior Technicians (RBT®), Occupational-and Speech- Language-Therapists. In addition, Autism Rocks not only provides services for children, but coffee mornings, social calendar events, complimentary parent training and presentations, to provide support to families with autistic children. 25 EQUITY

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