August 2021 | ISSUE 168
AZA United Congratulates Devin Booker

AZA United would like to congratulate Devin Booker of the Phoenix Suns for winning the 2020-21 Seasonlong NBA Cares Community Assist Award. With this award, Booker is recognized for his exceptional community outreach in the greater Phoenix area through philanthropic support to local nonprofits.

Earlier this year, Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns Charities awarded AZA United with a generous grant of $100,000 through the Devin Booker Starting Five award to support the opening of our West Valley Center, which is currently in development. This new center will be the next step of our expansion plan to continue the advancement of our mission to help as many families as possible with individualized supports.

During the second quarter of this year, we began looking for the perfect spot for our new West Valley Center and we have found it! It's a good size building in Avondale on a large piece of property for additional future development. This location will allow us go beyond replication of the East Valley Center and further expand the programs we offer for all members of each family. We expect to finalize the purchase of the property by the end of this year and then begin renovations and construction. Our goal is to open to the public in late 2022. Stay tuned for more updates!

Thank you Devin Booker and Phoenix Suns Charities for the amazing work you do for our community!
Meet our New Bilingual Family Support Specialist

We are very happy to welcome Sonya Cocco to Team AZA as our new Bilingual Family Support Specialist. In this role, Sonya will be providing emotional support and guidance to parents, as well as helping them navigate the systems of care in both English and Spanish.
As a parent of a child with autism, her lived experience and deep involvement in her child’s therapies make her a wonderful addition to our Family Support Team. Sonya is eager to help families get the same high level of support and guidance she has received from AZA over the past 9 years.
 
Sonya was born in the beautiful Dominican Republic where she completed 5 years of medical school. She has lived in Arizona for over 20 years where she has been professionally involved in the healthcare field. Before AZA United, Sonya worked for over 10 years at a behavioral health hospital, where she acquired experience working with the adult and adolescent populations. In her latest position, she oversaw the challenging mission of adequately staffing the hospital.
In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family, swimming in their pool with the kids, traveling to Dominican Republic to visit her family, and relaxing with her husband over highly competitive backgammon matches.

Contact our Family Support Team to learn about all the different services we offer for the entire family or to receive guidance on what resources are available in the community for the various needs a family may be experiencing at any point.
Jobs Opportunities at AZA

Fundraising & Event Specialist
We are in search of a knowledgeable and experienced fundraiser to join our Development team to assist with donor acquisition & retention, and event coordination related activities. The perfect candidate is an individual that is collaborative, creative, detail-oriented, and an exceptional communicator. This person must have the ability to multi-task, independently plan and organize activities to prioritize daily workloads and projects, and meet deadlines. This is a full-time position with the flexibility to work remotely on some days. Click here to apply.
 
Clinical Technician (Direct Support Provider/Behavior Coach)
We are excited to announce a new job opportunity in our Clinical Family Coaching program. We are seeking compassionate Clinical Technicians to administer a variety of behavioral intervention and skill-teaching strategies in order to support children and adults with developmental disabilities. Clinical Technicians provide one-on-one support in home, school, and/or community settings. Individuals with experience supporting teens or adults are excellent candidates for this position! Click here to apply.

Speech Language Pathologist (SLP-CCC) - Virtual and School-Based
We have a unique and exciting opportunity for a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP-CCC) to join our team and remotely support a specialized autism school in central Phoenix that we partner with. This is a full-time virtual position that follows the school calendar schedule. Click here to complete an application.

New Blog: How ABA Empowers Individuals with Autism

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder reported by the CDC to affect approximately one in 54 children in the US (according to 2016 data). While there is an extensive range of abilities and diversity of people on the autism spectrum, it is often characterized by the following:

· Difficulties in social communication differences, including verbal and nonverbal communication
· Deficits in social interactions
· Restricted, repetitive patterns of behavior, interests, or activities, and sensory problems

Various treatments and therapies, including speech and occupational therapy and assistive technology, are often used to improve the skills of people on the autism spectrum. One of the most widely used treatments is Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA). ABA is considered the gold standard in autism treatment by the US Surgeon General and the American Psychological Association because it has been studied for decades and has the largest body of scientific research to support its effectiveness. That is why ABA therapy is often referred to as the most “evidence-based” treatment available for autism.

Continue reading by clicking the button below.
Announcements
A new session of the Thriving Sibling program is starting soon. This is a 12-week therapeutic support program for siblings of children with developmental disabilities and behavioral disorders.
Teen and pre-teen siblings will develop an understanding of how to move through life applying multiple mindfulness and acceptance exercises that align with their continued growth as siblings and individuals.

For more information, complete the interest form here.

Upcoming Events

Join us on Saturday, September 4th from 10 to 11 AM for our next Sibshops events for siblings. Registration is FREE and required to obtain the login information. Email or call us at Sibshops@AZAunited.org - 602-773-5773.


Our Grupo de Apoyo Unidos en Bienestar (Therapeutic Support Group in Spanish for parents), will meet again on Friday, September 10th from 12:00-1:30. Click here for information & registration in Spanish.
Link of the Month

The Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center (SARRC) is partnering with several Arizona nonprofit organizations to introduce YES Day for Autism, a new, exciting campaign focused on raising funds, awareness, and acceptance. As one of the partners for this event, AZA United has created a team and you are all invited to join us.