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Organization for Autism Research: Life Journey through Autism, A Guide for Military Families

Updated on February 7, 2020
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Bachelors Degree in Organizational Behavioral Psychology with a background in Autism, Mental Health, Business Psychology

Operation Autism

Operation Autism

OAR directly supports  military families living with autism spectrum disorders. A Guide for the Life Journey with Autism is designed for a reference for available resources, services, and support.

Operation Autism functions as an online source for military families specifically.  This is because lifestyle for a military family provides unique obstacles and challenges otherwise not normally seen.

It is part of the Organization for Autism Research (OAR) and American Legion Child Welfare Foundation. OAR’s intent in developing this resource is to:

  • • Provide military families that have a child with autism with access to evidence based information about the disorder
  • • Identify sources off post for treatments and therapies
  • • Offer tips for dealing with some of the unique challenges military life poses for military dependent children with autism and their families,
  • • Inform of child's educational rights and offers some strategies for progress in the classroom,
  • • Provide a blog forum where military parents  can ask questions, share information and ideas, and lend  support.

Behavioral Health

Child and Youth Behavioral Military and Family Life Counselors

To  support children, youth, and parents in a variety of settings. The nonmedical counseling by MFLCs enhances military and family readiness by strengthening coping skills and building resiliency.

Program Highlights 

  • possess a Masters or PhD in a mental health related field, are licensed or certified by a state  to practice independently,  undergone a criminal history background check.
  •  receive consultation, training, and educational presentations and workshops.
  •  support to children and adolescents up to age eighteen, with parental consent, on topics including but not limited to identifying feelings, problem solving, bullying, conflict resolution, self esteem, coping with deployment and reunification, sibling/parental relationships, managing anger, time management, separation , and divorce.
  •  private and confidential services to encourage  participation
  • provide direct interventions to children, youth, and parents; model behavioral management techniques; facilitate psycho-educational briefings and trainings; and observe, participate, and engage in activities with children and youth. 

Members of the active and reserve components and their families are eligible.

Services are delivered through:

  • Child Development Centers on military installations
  • Department of Defense Education Activity Schools
  • Child and Youth Programs
  • Joint Family Support and Assistance teams in Joint Force Headquarters
  • National Military Family Association
  • Guard and Reserve camps
  • Local Education Agencies (LEAs) supporting military connected children

Sesame Street Helps Military Kids with Deployment

Sesame Partnership

Sesame Street's Talk, Listen, Connect initiative, a military outreach program that was started in 2006, provides support and significant resources for military families with young children experiencing the effects of deployment, multiple deployments, or changes to a parent due to a combat-related injury.

  • The Talk, Listen, Connect Kit is a free, bilingual multimedia kit that provides 2-5 year olds ways to cope with a deployment. The materials include: 2 DVDs with the Sesame Street Muppets; magazine and poster for caregivers. Talk, Listen, and Connect was created by Sesame Workshop and Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. with additional support from the New York State Office of Mental Health and The Military Child Education Coalition.
  • Sesame Rooms in a Box wall appliqués, play tents, and stickers that may be used to "Sesamize" a room, a comforting place for children.
  • The Sesame Street Experience for Military Families included a 2008 traveling tour of Sesame Street characters to more than forty military installations across the country. The tour featured live performances by Sesame Street characters and distribution of resources, including the Talk, Listen, Connect DVDs, to military families.
  • Coming Home: Military Families Cope With Change is a prime-time PBS special featuring Queen Latifah, John Mayer, and Elmo that aired on April 1, 2009.

All active duty members, DoD civilians, Guard and Reserve members, and their families are eligible.

American Military Families Autism Support

The American Military Families Autism Support's Mission is to assist military families with autistic children in building a support system

American Military Families Autism Support is by military families, for military families.

They provide news, information, contacts and options. 

Due to the nature of military life and the challenges of autism, these families often experience additional stressors over non-military families.


Autism Speaks' Family Services

Autism Speaks has a department for family services that are dedicated to giving individuals empowerment when impacted by autism. We help families make the most use of their child's development potential and also hope to improve the quality of life in the autistic child.

They promote and advocate for the best in treatment, education and all services—from early intervention to adult care.

The Autism Response Team Coordinators are trained to connect families with information, resources and opportunities.

  • To reach an ART coordinator, please call 888-AUTISM2 (888-288-4762)

DoD Enhanced Access to Autism Services Demonstration

DoD Enhanced Access to Autism Services Demonstration

  • If there is increased access to these services
  • If the services are reaching those most likely to benefit from them
  • If the quality of those services is meeting an appropriate standard of care currently accepted by the professional community of providers, including the Behavior Analyst Certification Board
  • That state licensure and certification requirements, where applicable, are being met

Permits TRICARE reimbursement for EIA delivered by paraprofessional providers. Allows non-certified educational intervention service providers, or tutors, to provide autism services to military family members. Non-certified tutors and tutors-in-training may provide ABA services under close supervision


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