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Penquis Receives Grant to Expand Autism Resources

July 23, 2014

Bangor—Penquis recently received a $9,696 grant from the Penobscot Valley Health Association Fund of the Maine Community Foundation to help children with Autism increase their independence life skills.

Penquis’ Autism Community Services, in collaboration with Eastern Maine Counseling and Testing Services and Psychologist Tim Rogers, Ph.D., will create a library of videos that use video modeling and video prompts to help youth with Autism increase their daily living skills and independence. Video modeling is based on observational learning, where an individual watches and then imitates a behavior. Video prompts break down a specific task into steps and use pauses to help an individual practice what he or she has observed.

Twenty videos will be created for tasks that include tooth brushing, dish washing, picking out the correct clothes for the weather, folding clothes, tying shoes, and washing your face. Videos will be made available online and on DVD, and will be used by parents, caregivers and other providers to help children learn to complete tasks independently.

“We are very excited to undertake this project,” said Heather Wheaton, division manager for Autism Community Services. “These video models will provide caregivers, providers, and the community with more tools to help increase the ability of youth diagnosed with Autism to complete life skills tasks independently.  This will increase their ability to live independently in the future, as well as alleviate some challenges faced by caregivers. We are grateful for the opportunity to develop this important resource.”

With offices in Ellsworth and Portland, the Maine Community Foundation works with donors and other partners to improve the quality of life for all Maine people. To learn more about the foundation, visit www.mainecf.org.

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