OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIODS: Autism scholarship applications will be accepted anytime and will be considered during a scheduled Open Enrollment period of the Parent Coaching in the Early Start Denver Model (P-ESDM) autism scholarship program. Under the current Terms and Conditions of the program and contingent upon funds in the autism scholarship fund, two Open Enrollment periods will be scheduled each year during the following months:
May 1-31 October 1-31
COVID-19 & the P-ESDM Autism Scholarship Program Applications are being accepted for the Unicorn Children's Foundation Autism Scholarship Program, Parent Coaching in the Early Start Denver Model (P-ESDM). Our highest priority remains ensuring the health and well-being of both our scholarship recipients and our therapists. As long as social distancing guidelines are in place, parent coaching sessions will be held using Telehealth. If you are selected to receive an ESDM autism scholarship, you will be informed of any changes or updates as to whether the autism scholarship program will be administered using Telehealth or in-person sessions or a combination of both. We are closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation and we encourage you to check this webpage for any updates of the P-ESDM autism scholarship program. If you need to reach us, send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or call Maria, the autism program Volunteer Administrator at (504) 669-5331. Leave a message and your call will be returned. Thank you for your patience and understanding during these challenging times.
TO QUALIFY: Age Requirement- Minimum age of child is 12 months old and maximum age is 52 months old at the END of the Open Enrollment period in which applying. Before you apply, click here to review a complete listing of requirements in the current Terms and Conditions.
TO APPLY: Complete here for the interactive “Application – Autism Scholarship” form online to apply during or in advance of the next scheduled Open Enrollment period.
NOTIFICATION: The selection process and final notifications are expected to be completed in approximately six to eight weeks after the close of the enrollment period in which an application is considered.
PARENT COACHING SESSIONS: Parent coaching sessions following the May enrollment period typically begin in early to mid-August, and sessions for the October enrollment period typically begin in early to mid-January. The ESDM Therapist will contact selected applicants to schedule coaching sessions.
What is ESDM?
Early Start Denver Model (ESDM) is an evidence-based therapy that integrates a relationship-focused, developmental model with the well-validated teaching practices of applied behavior analysis. Research shows that young children who receive ESDM therapy make significant gains and have less need for special services later in life.
The following is a sampling of comments taken from the post-evaluations:
Would you recommend ESDM Parent Coaching to other parents of young children with autism? Why? One family reported: Yes! Enthusiastically! It has changed my life and my son's life forever. Now I have a level of skill in dealing with problem behavior that I never had before. My son and I are happier, argue less, and have a more harmonious relationship. I'm confident that I can continue to build upon those skills as life progresses. Another family reported: Absolutely. This is by far the most helpful thing to us as a family since our autism diagnosis. It taught us that we are not just parents, we are teachers. It also helped us in understanding the best way to have the most functional life for our child and ourselves. It gave us resources to go back to when we are struggling and how to evaluate and correct a behavior. Did your child's behavior improve over the 14 weeks of parent coaching? If so, please explain how. If not, why do you think there was a lack of progress in this area? A family reported: Yes! He is having many fewer tantrums, doing more for himself, and is generally more compliant. Another family reported: Yes... he actually does listen and responds to certain demands that are asked of him. Did your child's ability to communicate improve over the 14 weeks of parent coaching? If so, please explain. If not, why do you think there was a lack of progress in this area? An evaluation indicated: Yes, he has about 25-30 words in his vocabulary, when we started he had 3-5 words.