Youth Homes of Mid-America has created a new program for youth who have struggled in prior settings because the combination of lower cognitive functioning, developmental delays, and serious emotional and behavioral concerns.

Who

Youth 12 and older who are court ordered to foster group care and have been recommended for placement in NACC by an LPHA, and who qualify on the basis of two of three specific criteria:

  • Substantial limitations in 2 or more of the SED (Serious Emotional Disturbance) criteria categories

    • Self-care

    • Social and family relationships

    • School/work

    • Self-direction

  • IQ of 75 or under

  • Diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder

What

The NACC program will provide a structured setting, specifically trained staff, behavior analytic curriculum for social and emotional development, and more intensive staffing ratios:

  • AIM Curriculum (Accept. Identify. Move.) — a behavioral analytic curriculum for social-emotional development in children. This curriculum will be individualized for each youth.

  • Sensory rooms/activity rooms on both sides

    • These sensory rooms will include items such as weighted blankets, bean bags, music, aromatherapy, rocking chairs, crash mats, among others. The activity rooms will consist of arts and crafts, music, games, and others to assist in the structured setting.
  • Maximum of 1 staff: 2 youth ratio

    • These staff will be specifically trained to work in this program and will provide the structured setting for the youth.

Where

NACC is currently available on the Youth Homes of Mid-America campus in Johnston, Iowa:

  • 8 beds in Jacobson Cottage (LEED certified building)

    • 4 youth on each side

    • Some campus integration (e.g., Johnston Schools on Youth Homes campus)

    • Opportunities for community integration