Bucharest, November 28, 2017 – The www.eduaba.ro platform was developed in the first stage of the project “Connecting for Children with Autism” and comprises the first integrated application ever in Romania, which allows the members of a multidisciplinary team involved in the treatment and rehabilitation of children with autism to be connected in real-time. In the first year of the project, the platform will manage a total of 300 children diagnosed with autism from Bucharest and from Ilfov and Suceava counties.
The www.eduaba.ro platform is an initiative of the Help Autism Association, in partnership with the Applied Behavioral Therapy Association – ATCA and the New Odyssey Association. The project, amounting to RON 600,000, was co-financed by the Vodafone Romania Foundation, in the form of a contribution worth about RON 320,000, allocated through the Connecting for Good 2017 program.
The web platform comprises two components, each responding to the actual needs of the professionals engaged in the rehabilitation of children with autism: the integrated application, connecting the members of a multidisciplinary team of professionals, made up of a physician, a psychologist, a social worker, a parent and an educator, and an online database allowing for real-time ongoing monitoring of the therapeutic interventions and of the evolution of the little patients during the treatment and rehabilitation process, as well as the storage of information about the therapeutic history of each child. Thanks to these two components, the new platform facilitates a much easier integration of the children with autism into the education system.
“This is one of the seven projects funded by our Foundation through the 2017 Connecting for Good program. We are glad to see yet another successful project that illustrates how technology, and in particular the mobile one, may provide solutions designed to improve people’s lives, streamline processes, make information easily accessible and facilitate communication amongst specialists, social workers and parents, regardless of the distances that separate them”, says Angela Galeța, Director, Vodafone Romania Foundation.
”Gathering all the relevant information into an integrated system and adapting it to the multiple requirements of the therapeutic intervention for children with autism has been a real challenge to us. The outcome of this project comes to prove once again the effectiveness of the solution for this multidisciplinary approach and for the particularly important relationship between the team of therapists and the children’s parents”, says Mariana Hanganu, Project Manager, Help Autism Association.
The database of the www.eduaba.ro platform, currently under development, will include an online library containing a psychological evaluation questionnaire for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), plus over 300 protocols for working with children undergoing therapy, a CRM module containing fields dedicated to information about children, their families and their medical data.
The psychological evaluation questionnaire has been developed within the project, on the basis of the national child assessment curriculum defined by the Ministry of National Education, and is fully adapted to the special educational needs of the child with ASD. The questionnaire has been prepared by a team of four experienced ASD therapy professionals, who are also coordinators of intervention teams involved in treating a large number of children with autism and beneficiaries of the partner associations, the rehabilitation of these children being directly dependent on the intervention of both the therapists themselves and of the teams they coordinate.
The professionals have been able to develop a vital autistic child rehabilitation tool, which is now integrated into the www.eduaba.ro platform, namely a psychological evaluation that generates intervention plans and the therapeutic schemes, tailored to the needs of each and every child with ASD.
The 300 beneficiaries of this stage of the project are currently in the care of eight special centers belonging to the partner associations, being the first beneficiaries of the newly developed solution. The solution is to be implemented further across the entire country.
The second stage of the “Connecting for Children with Autism” project, which is due to end in March 2018, will consist in the development of the core component, i.e. of the mobile app to monitor and record the children’s responses to the tasks assigned by their therapists during the intervention. The mobile app will be permanently connected to a database, with the latter collecting all the relevant information deriving from the therapeutic process, while also generating the graphs required to keep track of the progress made by each patient.
Vodafone Romania Foundation is a Romanian nongovernmental charitable organization, established in 1998, which operates separately and independently from the Vodafone Romania SA’s business. During its 19 years of activity, Vodafone Romania Foundation has funded 1,046 programs run by 660 NGOs throughout the country, in the fields of healthcare, education and social services. The projects had a total of 2 million beneficiaries – children, young and old people and physically, socially or economically disadvantaged people. So far, the Vodafone Romania Foundation has invested over 26 million euros in projects run by nonprofit partner organizations. More details about the Foundation’s programs are available at fundatia-vodafone.ro, http://jurnaldebine.fundatia-vodafone.ro/ and www.facebook.com/fundatiavodafone.
Help Autism Association has been actively involved for the last eight years in implementing programs designed to enhance awareness on autism and on the vital importance of early diagnosis and early treatment of children with autism. In addition to supporting the changing of the status of autism in Romania, the Association provides therapy services through five centers, seven public-private partnerships and at patient’s home and delivers training classes for ABA therapists, as well as free teacher training courses, workshops and counseling sessions for parents, being also a co-organizer of the ABA International Conference.
Applied Behavioral Therapy Association – ATCA has become a professional standard thanks to its outstanding results in intervention programs for children with behavioral disorders. Over the nine years since its foundation, the association has been working via two treatment centers, where a total of 139 children are undergoing rehabilitation therapy. The Association is also a co-organizer of the ABA International Conference and the only institution in Romania providing BCBA-certified continuous training to behavior analysts.
The New Odyssey Association has been supporting for over five years the rehabilitation of children with autism through inclusive education, research and technology. New Odyssey has a multidisciplinary team of professionals and provides effective educational services in the therapeutic program of every child, focused on applied behavioral analysis principles and based on scientific evidence, as well as speech therapy, sensory therapy and kinetotherapy services.