Local kids and young adults with autism will benefit from a recent grant award.

Excel Employment Options announced that they recently received a $60,000 grant from the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan to support their new Autism Service and Supports Center in Livingston County. Regional Director Natasha Doan-Motsinger says there is currently a lengthy waiting list of kids who qualify for the Medicaid autism waiver, but who do not have access to services and that’s who they are trying to reach.

She says the center uses Applied Behavior Analysis, or ABA, to help provide all-inclusive services, which are administered by a Board Certified Behavioral Analyst. Located in Howell, the center offers social and behavioral support therapy and employment resources for children and adults on the Autism spectrum, a mock apartment for the purposes of independent living skill instruction (pictured), a parent support group, job club for those seeking employment, and social/recreational activities.

Doan-Motsinger says because research has shown early intervention is critical to the long-term success for many of the people on the Autism spectrum, these services will result in reduced social and behavior barriers, increased independence and living skills and improved employment outcomes.

There is also a Grand Opening Celebration for the center planned for February 8th. You can get details through the link below. (JK)