“Horia Motoi" Centre, a center of excellence in the recovery of children with autism spectrum disorder and in the application of ABA, accords a special importance to therapeutic interventions. We focus on the understanding, modeling, and continuous evaluation of the child's progress.
We are the first centre in Romania to apply ABA intervention, and we do it with love from 2004. Also, we are the first centre in Romania applying ESDM therapy with acredited coordination (Early Start Denver Model). We are proud of our results, of the team that we molded and trained here all this time. We take delight in providing the parents and children the most efficient therapy model and in our continuous desire to attain recovery.
The case of Radu Nedescu (the first recovered child with ASD in Romania by using ABA method) continues to give us hope that, through excellent interventions we shall surpass together all the obstacles.
1. The first centre in România in which ABA therapy (Applied Behaviour Analysis) and ESDM (Early Start Denver Model) have been applied. We are the first to implement the ESDM method in Romania, in 2019, which is excellent for very young children.
2. The detailed evaluation of the children diagnosed or suspected with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) is crucial in constructing strategies used in therapy.
3. Respecting the number of hours offered by the coordinator to each child according to the recommandations of „The Behavior Analyst Certification Board” (BACB).
4. Experienceiîn forming ABA comportamental therapists, 18 years of improving our therapist forming programs. Mihaela Iancu, the trainer of the centre (accredited ABA coordinator) established a new individualised program for forming therapists, and maintaining the knowledge of the entire team.
5. In our 18 years of experience, a total of 137 children enrolled in our center, of which 53 are considered fully recovered, having went on to pursue academic education, while the others recorded significant progress. As of Nov 2022, there are 30 children in the ESDM program and 15 have recovered.
Horia Motoi Centre, Association for the Aid of Children with Autism in Romania (AACAR) was established in 2004 by Cristina Nedescu, together with Vali Grigore.
At the time, in Romania there was no possibility of recovery for children with autism and no center to offer therapy services for them.
Radu, one of Nedescu family’s sons has been diagnosed with autism at the age of two.
”Everybody was saying there is nothing we can do.” Recalls Cristina, his mom. ”His manifestations are going to worsen, it will be harder and harder for you to face him. You’ll probably need to hospitalize him.”
Until five years old, the world for Radu didn’t make sense. He found strength and fascination in running, yelling, repeated opening and closing of doors, the wheels of a toy car, walking on tip toes and hands flipping. Cristina and Damian asked and received support from a specialist of UK Young Autism Project, a center from Great Britain, which based their approach on science and specialized in education of children with autism, using ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis). With the help of Liz Shew, Radu had a smooth development and a quick cognitive progress supported by the consistency and determination of the therapy team and his parents.
Now Radu explains that for him, the world started to build up as he learnt things. He started to see it with every new image and new concept, with every new connection strengthened. They found their place in him starting from a dull, mechanic process, towards something alive, heredity, education and the surrounding environment opening up to the curiosity and cheer, to tenderness and his logic mind. All these molded him and today he can assume his mistakes, he can empathize easily and can pay attention towards the things he sees and listens. His development provoked his parents to ask themselves how it would be if this was available to more children.
And so, Horia Motoi Centre came into being.
Today (2022) Radu Nedescu is a 24 years old teenager, and is doing his master in philosophy at KU Leuven, in Belgium. ”Finished, Never, Now” is his first poetry book sharing his vision of the world, that sinks one in questions enough for a lifetime.
From 2004, until the present, our eyes could see how the potential of many children, who have came to us, was actualised. Before 2004, in Romania the recovery of children with autism seemed a miracle out of fairy tales. Through implementing the comportamental intervention ABA, the “Horia Motoi” Centre brought in Romania a method showing that results exists, that autism is not just a closed door.
The fast evolution given by ABA applied with Radu Nedescu created new expectations and hopes for the parents choosing the “Horia Motoi” Centre. Throughout many years of experience, it was showed to us that evolution is possible in any case, but there is no guarantee of full recovery for every child. We do what we can the best, focusing on rigour. We are looking at new modalities of extracting what is the best from the child. For this reason, besides ABA therapy, we implemented, in 2019, also the ESDM therapy, excelent for younglings (between 18 months and 4 years.
The target that we are interested in is that of social integration, integration of knowledge and aptitudes for autonomic functioning. Getting to this depends on many variables: the age at which we start the intervention (the sooner the better), the grade of the pervasive development disorder, consistency in intervention, the continuance of intervention, the involvement of the team and the parents.
Since our start, being the first centre for autism from Romania, we were deeply happy every time a child joins the “"Horia Motoi" Centre graduated group”. This is how we name the children that successfully integrate in kindergartens and normal schools. As any success, we celebrate it accordingly, with cakes, music, joy. The first graduate was in 2009, when he entered the first grade. Integration at school can be done also step by step, being helped by by a tutor, at the beggining, later on one’s own.
In the present, 2022, we have 21 children enrolled in our programs.
We had long time wished to find a way to show the world that autism doesn't necessarily mean limited. Most times, regarding autism, the most troubled area is considered to be social interaction. Therefore, we decided to work on something in this sensitive area and we chose a play for this purpose, all in.
The script was based on the story "Yoli-Zoli witch and the Jumbled-Up dust", written by Vali Grigore. The actors are children that were still following the ABA intervention at our Centre, at that time. The oldest was 8 and a half, and the youngest had just turned 4. Radu Nedescu was 11 at the time, and he played the storyteller. He was the initial motivation for Creating the Centre, so we thought this might suit him.
We started repetitions in October of 2009 and the show was presented on 10 June 2010. It was a gathering of forces in which every gesture, move or proposition had taken its time in order to give the children trust in their own forces. We have been well aware from the start that the type of incertitude a show of this sort represents would be a great challenge for them, and this incertitude meant not only the place itself but also the change of places for the show to take place.
Supporting us have been CAP Publicity Agency and Tandarica Theatre, as well as many beautiful and dedicated people.Yoli-Zoli Show was one more of a chance to acknowledge that every acquisition is a step forward to a future milestone. An inscription that joins one of the show’s illustrations says” Good deeds come back”.
"Our story begun when Antonia had 1 year and 7 months, and, after a control at the neurologist, I recieved the news that she has a delay in development, and that her mental age is that of 10 months. She was uttering 3 words, but she was not always using them meaningfully"
“The word autism has hit uș when Simon had two years and a half. We knew from some time that Simon could not speak, he had weird behaviour, and as if he was always in another world, a beautiful world understood just by him”
”We worked together as long as our child needed ABA, the therapy that every parent fear in the beginning. The therapists here are true professions and I can confirm that everything they did influenced the child only positively! ABA therapy, applied by professionals, in controlled circumstances, does make miracles real, and this is what Horia Motoi Centre did for us: wonders…. more"
"The first thing that I learnt about autism was that we had to do something now! Not tomorrow, not later, now. ”
"It's hard to summarise in few words what meant for us the experience in this center but more than anything it meant restoring our hope and trust that everything can be changed."
"Our family’s experience has been amazing, in a relatively short time, therapy wise, we have obtained unexpected results that we wish to all neurotypical children, too, not just autistic. Do trust and be patient with the team in the center, they really don’t play around with promises and don’t waste your child’s time.”
"You give us hope and countless joys through your work and the love offered to the children. Every day I think how lucky we are to have found you.” Mother of Simon
"When Stefan turned three, we started to realize that something was off. He resembled a little statue, joyful, with big eyes. In 2013 Stefan was diagnosed with autism and with little chances of ¬recovery¬. What Stefan is today owes a lot to himself, but I don’t think it would have been possible without the help of the team in the Centre”
Adress: Strada Papiu Ilarian nr. 15, interphone 01, Sector 3, București
Program: Monday-Friday: 10:00 - 18:00
Banca ING, sucursala Dristor, IBAN RO39INGB0000999908963688