Lake Havasu City, Ariz. — Go Lake Havasu, the tourism marketing organization for Lake Havasu City, is now a Certified Autism Center™ designated by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). The CAC designation means that Go Lake Havasu staff completed professional autism training and certification to recognize and assist with the needs of travelers and visitors on the autism spectrum.
“Lake Havasu City is unique in that we have a beautiful serene lake but we also have sights and sounds like fireworks and hot rods that may provide sensory challenges for our friends and visitors with ASD,” said Terence Concannon, CEO of Go Lake Havasu. “Our organization and our community feel the greater our understanding of these challenges, the greater support we can provide to our visitors with autism and their caregivers.”
Lake Havasu City offers many opportunities to engage in the natural beauty of Arizona. For example, water can be attractive and soothing to some people with autism and other special needs. Go Lake Havasu staff recommend the no-wake zone at Rotary Community Park’s buoyed swim area can be a safe space for special needs guests to decompress when they feel overstimulated.
Pete A. Sanders, Jr. is a stress management specialist who has worked extensively with veterans through the Department of Veterans Affairs. For maximum benefit, he recommends using this resource at night: “Floating at night in this swim area’s gently rocking waters offers the deep stress-relieving benefits of a sensory deprivation tank to soothe limbic brain distress–but at no cost or risk of negative side effects. It offers relief for PTSD sufferers and families traveling with children and adults on the autism spectrum.”
For almost 20 years, IBCCES has been the leader in cognitive disorder training and certification for healthcare, education and corporate professionals around the globe. IBCCES recognized that many families with children who have special needs have limited travel and recreation options. In response to this need, IBCCES created training and certification programs specifically for the hospitality and travel industry. More families and individuals are seeking out destinations and organizations that have completed a certification program through an accredited source.
IBCCES is the only credentialing organization providing this type of certification, which includes evidence-based information as well as the perspectives of individuals with autism, alongside other tools and resources such as onsite reviews and customized recommendations, as well as renewal requirements to ensure the program is a long-term commitment and has a lasting impact.
“We’re impressed with the dedication of the Go Lake Havasu staff has to better serving individuals on the autism spectrum. Organizations like Go Lake Havasu are critical to accomplishing our mission of inclusivity for all families,” said Myron Pincomb, IBCCES Board Chairman.