After being empty for years, the old Firestone Plaza building has its first tenant.
Indiana Behavior Analysis Academy opened a site in Kokomo and is now open at 219 N. Union St., Suite 101 in downtown Kokomo.
The IBAA is the first company to reopen in the historic building, which is currently undergoing restoration. The Indiana Department of Homeland Security’s Fire and Building Safety Division provided design-to-build clearance and approved the architectural plans that made it possible to open the autism center.
Lisa Steward, a board-certified behavior analyst, said the IBAA is looking to expand its operations from Indianapolis and believes it would be ideal to open a site in Kokomo after speaking with the director Jamy Howard clinic, originally from Kokomo and graduated from IU Kokomo.
The IBAA offers applied behavior analysis therapy to help children diagnosed with autism and began operations on Wednesday.
âWe recognize the individual strengths and needs of each child,â Steward said. âWe meet with parents and examine each child individually to develop a personalized treatment plan based on the child’s needs. “
After working with children with autism in Indianapolis for the past 20 years, Steward said she hopes to provide a center that helps children develop skills in both communication and socialization.
The academy offers individual therapy for each child. The treatment plan may include developing social behaviors such as learning to make eye contact, using non-verbal communication, learning to make friends, and doing well in school.
The downtown location will allow the academy to accommodate up to 10 full-time children, providing them with up to 40 hours of support per week. The IBAA chapter will also have its own clinical psychologist among its three full-time employees.
“I received [developer] Jeff [Broughton’s] name and knew he was developing properties downtown, âSteward said. âWe wanted to be centrally located and liked the closeness to the YMCA and the library across the street. I think they will also be able to use the programs they offer there. “
Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight said the downtown location is a perfect location for the IBAA.
âThe opening of the IBAA complements Kokomo’s existing network of services for children with autism and their parents,â said Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight. âThe academy is another resource for children with autism to build their confidence and skills so they can access our city activities and lead the lives they choose. Projects like this have a real and measurable impact on the lives of the people of Kokomo.
IBAA joins Systems in Motion LLC, a technology company based in Newark, Calif., Which could add 240 jobs at Firestone Plaza by December 2016 by investing $ 5.4 million to lease, renovate and equip its delivery center in the ‘Indiana.
The academy will host an open house from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. on November 7.
For more information or to see if your child is eligible for treatment, call the Indiana Behavior Analysis Academy at 765-419-0411 or visit www.indianabaa.com.