Gilbert Parks and Recreation recently earned the Certified Autism Center™ (CAC) designation from the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) for undergoing training and implementing new programs and resources that better serve autistic or sensory-sensitive individuals.
During the certification process, IBCCES conducted an onsite review of key parks and community centers in Gilbert to help provide recommendations on how the town could better understand and accommodate visitors’ needs.
Some of those new programs and resources include:
- Guides to help communicate the sensory impacts at Gilbert parks and facilities
- Quiet zones at all facilities and events
- Noise-canceling headphones and other sensory tools at each recreation venue
- Low sensory options at events such as the “No Noise Hour” occurring prior to the start of Gilbert’s Truck-a-Palooza event in January
Gilbert Parks and Recreation’s staff also participated in training from subject matter experts and autistic self-advocates.
“Being recognized as a Certified Autism Center™ demonstrates that Gilbert’s Parks & Recreation Department is committed to serving all individuals in our community, including those who are autistic. Gilbert is dedicated to ongoing training and education of its employees in order to better serve autistic individuals and their families when they are out enjoying the amenities available in our community,” said Robert Carmona, Gilbert Parks and Recreation Director.
Gilbert Parks and Recreation is the second department within the town to earn the Certified Autism Center™ designation, following the Gilbert Police Department which became certified in April.
“Parks and Recreation departments provide critical services and resources to the community, that also need to be more welcoming and accessible to autistic and sensory-sensitive residents and visitors. Ensuring we provide long-term, strategic partnership and resources to our partners is part of our mission, and we are proud to partner with Gilbert Parks and Recreation as they ensure everyone has what they need to enjoy the wonderful amenities and natural spaces in Gilbert,” said Myron Pincomb, IBCCES board chairman.
For more than 20 years, IBCCES has been the leader in cognitive disorder training and certification for healthcare, education, and corporate professionals around the globe. IBCCES created programs specifically for hospitality and recreational organizations such as hotels, theme parks, museums, and other attractions so staff would be more knowledgeable and other accommodations could be offered to this growing, but underserved, part of the community. IBCCES is the only credentialing board offering these types of programs, which include training from subject matter experts and autistic self-advocates, as well as long-term support and continuous learning, onsite reviews, and more.
IBCCES also created AutismTravel.com, as a free online resource for parents that lists certified locations and professionals. Each organization listed on the site has met Certified Autism Center™ (CAC) requirements.
Gilbert Parks and Recreation is committed to providing superior parks, recreation, and cultural programs, which exceed customer expectations, enhance the quality of life, and promote lifelong leisure and educational pursuits. These services are provided by a dedicated team focused on fairness, trust, and innovation with a commitment to excellence.
Gilbert’s mission is to “Anticipate. Create. Help people.” With 100 years of history and growth, our focus is on keeping the thriving community that Gilbert is today well into the future, while continuing to be one of the top communities in the country. In Gilbert, we are shaping a new tomorrow, today.
Committed to providing The Global Standard For Training and Certification in The Field of Cognitive Disorders – IBCCES provides a series of certifications that empower professionals to be leaders in their field and improve the outcomes for the individuals they serve. These programs are recognized around the world as the leading benchmark for training and certification in the areas of autism and other cognitive disorders.
Learn More About Becoming A Certified Autism Center™
Fill out the form below to learn more about our CAC Program, which includes staff certifications, training options and center certification.