ASTANA – Asyl Miras, the private foundation formed by Kazakh businessman and equity investor Bulat Utemuratov, opened the country’s fourth centre for children with autism Sept. 21 in Ust-Kamenogorsk, reported Forbes.kz. The other centres are in Almaty, Astana and Kyzylorda.
“We want to help children with autism spectrum disorders to socialise and live fully. Our foundation aims to provide world-class rehabilitation programmes for them in Kazakhstan. Therefore, we work with the world’s leading specialists in rehabilitation. In June 2015, we opened the first centre in Almaty, then in September we opened a centre in Astana and in June 2016 the one in Kyzylorda opened. Every day, parents of special children address us. At the moment 1,530 families have asked for help in three Asyl Miras centres, 827 children have gone through several stages of diagnosis and 567 children are included in the programme of psychological and educational rehabilitation,” said Asyl Miras Foundation Director Marat Aitmagambetov.
The multifunctional centre for children and their families was opened within the programme “Autism. One World for Everyone.” With the new centre the programme will be able to provide the most modern rehabilitation and correctional and advice help to an additional 478 youngsters and their families by the end of the year, he added.
Asyl Miras centres are unique institutions where children and their parents receive multifunction care from professionals. The rehabilitation course for every child is intended for five and a-half months. Each centre can provide help to 180 children at the same time and is free of charge.
“Now each centre has an interdisciplinary team of 30 specialists, psychologists and teachers who have been trained with the leading experts of Kazakhstan, as well as by advanced technologies from foreign countries (the United States, Russia) on issues of autism. The work of the specialists is based on the method of use of applied behaviour analysis, through which children quickly adapt to the social environment,” said Yelena Yegorova, head of the rehabilitation department at the Asyl Miras Centre in Almaty.
According to the centre’s website, there is a special single correctional programme at all centres based on two methods of autism treatment.
The first is classic, involving study and development of the child’s social-communicative and cognitive areas, as well as language and everyday life skills. Within this method four specialists, a psychologist, a defectologist, speech therapist and social educator, work with the child at the same time.
The second method is ABA (Applied Behaviour Analysis) therapy using an assessment of basic skills and language behaviour. In this technique, each child is provided with an individual teacher and system based on 544 skills he or she should master.
All the specialists at the Ust-Kamenogorsk centre have passed trainings on applied behaviour analysis, autism diagnosis, sensory integration and other specialised courses. The programme is expected to train professionals for other centres and in the future share methodological and practical knowledge with professionals throughout Kazakhstan.
The help of experts and support of society is very important in autism treatment. “Autism. One World for Everyone” is designed to help change attitudes towards those with the disorder, promote rehabilitation and socialisation programmes at the national level and provide the opportunity for children with a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder and their families to become full members of Kazakh society, noted the website.