Dr. Ania Young, an assistant professor in the College of Education at Montana State University Billings was recently awarded a $2,500 Public Awareness Grant from the Society for the Advancement of Behavior Analysis (SABA). Young, a faculty member of the Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) program, will utilize grant funds to lead efforts to increase awareness of the services offered by the program.
The grant will support Young in production of a video which will be posted on social media and relevant websites as well as an airing of a radio commercial featuring messages from behavior analysts, educators, and service recipients attesting to the effectiveness of ABA services. Funds will also be utilized to design brochures and flyers about ABA services, and to host “Coffee with a Behavior Analyst” informational meetings organized and held across the state.
According to a 2018 article in Nature magazine, the top three “middle of nowhere” towns are located in the rural state of Montana. Residents of rural areas have a significantly diminished likelihood of accessing necessary healthcare services, including ABA. The “ABA in the Middle of Nowhere” campaign will capture the attention of legislators, school educators, caregivers, parent support groups, and healthcare providers and will speak to what ABA services can accomplish given current progress in technology, which is making training and behavioral consultation more accessible than ever.
The campaign will include information about how behavior analysis can offer effective, advanced, and respectful approaches to addressing behavioral needs. Its messaging will emphasize the value of informing state legislators about benefits of behavior analysis so that state policies reflect progress, not barriers to service accessibility.