Hello! My name is Camelia Varga and I am an autism consultant, certified in RDI®, who lives in Montreal, Quebec.
I have decided to post a blog about the work I do in order to reach more families of children with Autism, Asperger and Pervasive Developmental Disorders. There are many of you who did not hear about this wonderful autism treatment that goes beyond teaching skills or modifying behaviors, straight to the core of the problem. The treatment is considered by many as “the missing piece of the Autism puzzle”. This amazing, new generation treatment, is called “Relationship Development Intervention” or RDI for short.
The program remediates the core deficits of autism as opposed to teaching skills that target symptoms of autism. I learned about this program in 2005 and soon after I started the certification program at the Connections Center in Houston, TX.
Previous to beginning my RDI training, I was involved in delivering one-on-one behavior modification programs and supervising them. For at least six years I have perfected ways to become efficient in getting children to respond in a certain way, to learn concepts faster by using external reinforcers (reinforcers are edibles, toys, tickles, hugs, etc. that the child receives when he experiences success, such as a correct answer). The children I worked with were making progress, but there was something missing: the children were still not able to share what was on their mind, still avoided interactions with peers, still had trouble dealing with change and they still seemed to have autism. I felt very bad about those aspects because I really wanted to affect the autism’s core, rather than help the child learn to count or read. I am not trying to diminish the importance of reading and counting and other such academic skills, but I think that there are other issues at hand (such as relating to other people and being able to actually feel something when reading a book).
RDI came as an answer to my prayers and it all fell into place. The success I started experiencing with families right from the start assured me that RDI is the answer for many families.