Including Kids

November 3, 2022 |

Empower Behavioral Health (“EBH”), a clinic-based provider of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy treatment for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, announced in June 2022 that it has acquired Including Kids, another ABA clinic offering services in the Greater Houston area. The acquisition, which closed on May 31, 2022, will allow EBH to expand its ABA therapy treatment and accelerate its expansion of the company in the Greater Houston area. EBH is a back-to-back 3-year Behavioral Health Center Of Excellence (BHCOE) organization dedicated to empowering individuals with autism and their families through quality services. Their compassionate and knowledgeable team of professionals provides an unparalleled level of service. EBH is one of the largest ABA providers in Texas.

Founded in 2015, Texas-based EBH is a local market leader with 12 clinics across the state and over 170 clinicians employed. The prevalence of autism spectrum disorder has increased sharply over the past decade, with recent studies suggesting that one in 44 children born today in America have autism spectrum disorder. EBH’s ABA therapy treatment programs are a leading, scientifically supported approach designed to help children attain maximum independence by focusing on core behavior and skills, such as verbal behavior and language, behavior management, self-help skills, social skills, and leisure skills.

Including Kids opened in April 2003 and has a longstanding history of meeting the needs of the greater Houston community. Including Kids is also a back-to-back BHCOE clinic, most recently receiving a 3-year accreditation, that provides evidence-based ABA therapy for persons with autism and related disabilities to maximize individual potential and facilitate meaningful inclusion in the community. They serve clients ages 2-35 through full-time & part-time programming, have after-school classes, parent training, community events, adult seminars, babysitter training courses, workshops on various topics, young adult programming including vocational training, and more. Including Kids has an 18,000-square-foot facility with classrooms, a leisure skills room, a motor lab room, a kitchen, and a community skills room with specific furnishings to help clients prepare for dental visits, doctor appointments, and haircuts. Outdoor features include a playground, sports field, walking trail, and a Food Forest that our students help nurture to grow fruits and vegetables. Inspire ND (formerly known as the Center for Community Inclusion) will stay with the nonprofit, and EBH is excited to have them as a natural next step for adolescents and young adults as they transition from their services. The nonprofit serves clients ages 16-35, emphasizing life skills, community integration, and employment.

The acquisition of Including Kids also means that EBH has the opportunity to partner with its Founder & Executive Director, Jennifer Dantzler. Jennifer is an influential expert in ABA and founded Including Kids Autism Center when autism was reaching epidemic levels, and there were very few services offered for early intervention. Her professional awards include the 2008 Woman of Achievement in the Area of Human Services for Family Time Crisis & Counseling Center, 2011 Health Care Professional of the Year for The Lake Houston Area Chamber of Commerce, and 2015 Best Buddies Champion. Most recently, Jennifer was honored by the Texas State Representative, proclaiming April 21 as Jennifer Dantzler Day in Texas as an appreciation for her work in autism. She is currently active in CASP (in multiple SIGS and was on the task force that created the new telehealth standards and co-wrote the nonprofit standards in the National Standards Manual CASP is releasing). She is the social media officer for TxABA OBM Special Interest Group, annually is asked to be on the OAR grant review committee, and recently got honored in the Morgan’s Wonderland Hall of Fame in San Antonio for her work on inclusion advocacy, not to mention the numerous speaking engagements she presents frequently.

About Empower Behavioral Health

Empower Behavioral Health was founded with the mission of empowering families by providing high quality services to ensure individuals with autism and other developmental disabilities reach their maximum potential. Our compassionate and knowledgeable team of professionals, in combination with the intensive nature of our individualized program, provides an unparalleled level of service. We believe that research-based ABA is essential for increasing independence and should be available to everyone regardless of diagnosis. In addition to our ABA services, Empower Behavioral Health recently began offering comprehensive diagnostic evaluations for autism and other disabilities. By adding this essential service, families can get a proper diagnosis and access the medically necessary services for their children more quickly.

About Including Kids

Including Kids’ mission is to help prepare our children and young adults for ultimate inclusion in programs with their typical peers and their community. Their team is committed to excellence in their work and the well-being and progress of their clients. Their vision is to create a welcoming world where every person is given a chance to succeed.