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May Institute Responds to Critical Need for Autism Services in Military Communities

07/20/10

Killeen, TX – May Institute, a national nonprofit organization that provides comprehensive, research-based services to children and adults with autism and other special needs, is expanding its autism services for military families. Through the May Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders in Killeen, Texas, the organization now offers a comprehensive set of educational and behavioral services to military families and their children with autism stationed at Fort Hood and the surrounding area.

This newest Center enables May Institute to provide home-based therapy and other autism-related services to families in all branches of the military stationed at more than a dozen installations throughout the country.

Autism is a developmental disability that occurs in one in every 110 children. It is a neurological disorder that affects the development of the brain, causing difficulty with communication, learning, and social interaction. The number of children with autism in military families is even more sobering than those in the general population. With one in 88 military children on the spectrum, as many as 12,000 military dependents may have autism. Their condition is made more difficult by the frequent changes of residences, schools, and other variables that accompany military life.

“The challenges of raising a child with autism grow exponentially for military families who juggle autism-related responsibilities alongside the unique circumstances often present in their lives,“ says Walter P. Christian, Ph.D., ABPP, President and CEO of May Institute. “We are working to reduce the stressors related to autism by providing these families with access to effective resources and care.”

May Institute utilizes developmentally appropriate practices based on applied behavior analysis (ABA), the methodology universally recognized as critical for teaching children with autism spectrum disorders or other behavioral or developmental disabilities. Services are available through the TRICARE ECHO Program and Enhanced Access to Autism Services Demonstration program.

May Institute provides services to all branches of the military, including the Army, Marines, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. In addition to Fort Hood in Texas, May Institute also offers services to families stationed at the following military bases: Hanscom Air Force Base and Massachusetts Military Reservation in Massachusetts; Naval Submarine Base in New London, Connecticut; Naval Station Newport in Rhode Island; Camp Lejeune and Fort Bragg in North Carolina; Fort McPherson/Fort Gillem near Atlanta, Georgia; Fort Benning in Columbus, Georgia; Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base in Alabama; Naval Air Station and Naval Station Mayport in Florida. Plans for a Center in Kentucky, to serve families at Fort Campbell, are now underway.

For more information about the May Center for Autism Spectrum Disorders in Killeen, Texas, please contact Amy Bontrager at 254.383.2085 or at abontrager@mayinstitute.org.

About May Institute
May Institute is a nonprofit organization that provides educational, rehabilitative, and behavioral healthcare services to individuals with autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities, brain injury, mental illness, and other behavioral health needs. Since its founding more than 55 years ago, May Institute has evolved into an award-winning national network that serves more than 25,000 individuals and their families annually. For more information, call 800.778.7601 or visit www.mayinstitute.org.

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