I have been working with Skybound since March 2020, and have been a registered behaviour technician since January 2021. I am new to the ABA world, my only experience being in the 19 months I have been with Skybound but as soon as I got my first taste back in March 2020 I was hooked! What I appreciate most about ABA is that we see actual improvements in our clients behaviour and learning, we hear from our families how much their lives have changed and we see our clients become happier – we get to make a significant difference in their lives. A bit about my background will help explain why this is so important to me.
I have a large family, I have 5 other siblings, two of which have been diagnosed with ASD. My younger brother was diagnosed from an early age but my younger sister wasn’t diagnosed until she was 15, she was also diagnosed with ADHD and GAD. I also have other family members who have been diagnosed with ASD and other mental health diagnoses. Growing up with my siblings and family members I have first hand experience of how a diagnosis of autism can affect not only the individual but the whole family. I watched how hard my parents had to fight to get my siblings the health and social provisions they deserved, and watching this gave me a desire to help others. At first I thought I wanted to do this through a legal route, but after taking Law and Psychology at A Level I realised that my true passion lay with Psychology. So I decided to study Psychology at UEA and graduated in 2018. Whilst at university I volunteered at a respite centre where I gained more experience with adolescents (11 – 18 years) with complex health needs and disabilities. During this time I learnt how to communicate with those who are non-verbal, whether this be through signs, gestures, PECS, whatever their preferred communication method was. After university I gained a job as a support worker with adults with disabilities and mental health diagnoses, although this job gave me a wealth of experience working with adults and building up my interpersonal skills I still had a passion to truly help people and make a significant impact in their lives – which I felt was missing doing support work.
After some searching I found Skybound were looking for a behaviour technician in my area. Not knowing much about their services I decided to research them and ABA and was very intrigued, the Psychologist in me loved the fact that all of their interventions are science and evidence based. Thankfully I was hired! I started work with an adolescent who presented with behaviours that were challenging and was non-verbal. During my time working with this client I have seen their behaviours that challenge significantly decrease, helped him learn how to read and pronounce letters, increased his repertoire of signs, taught him techniques to help calm him during heightened behaviours and much more! I feel extremely fortunate enough to have found what I was looking for in this job, I make a difference to people’s lives and ensure that someone is receiving the care that they deserve. I’m not fighting for it but I am providing it – which for me is way better! I look forward to progressing in my job role, gaining more valuable experience and knowledge, learning from the amazing Skybound team and, most importantly, carry on helping make a positive difference in our clients lives.