Making History with Nearly Two Decades of Autism Services
July 18, 2022
July 18, 2022
The autism community did not always have the support that it has today, but nearly two decades ago, Hopebridge Founder and Chief Clinical Officer Kim Strunk sought out to change that. All because of one woman’s motivation for change, what started as one small center in Kokomo, Indiana has now grown into one of the largest autism therapy networks in the nation. Hopebridge is founded and led by a group of clinicians with a mission to serve the underserved, an impact we are proud to be delivering on.
Serving as an occupational therapist in 2005, Kim often worked with children who displayed signs and symptoms of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), yet most of them were undiagnosed. At the time, it was not uncommon for diagnostic testing to wait until a few years into school, usually after social and behavioral challenges within the classroom. Kim knew these children and families deserved more.
“While watching parents rush from place to place for treatment, I became very moved and humbled by their challenges and how it impacted their children’s development and response to therapy,” said Kim. “I knew there must be a better, more intensive way to provide the care and learning tools they needed to succeed. My mission was to simplify the process for families.”
After much research, Kim opened Homefront Learning Center, now known as Hopebridge Autism Therapy Centers. She designed the Hopebridge 360 Care model, a multidisciplinary approach rooted in the evidence based applied behavior analysis (ABA therapy), along with complementary services like occupational, speech and feeding therapy.* At the time, it didn’t fit the traditional framework of autism therapy, nor did insurance companies recognize ABA programs, which made the services cost prohibitive for some. With help from her team, Kim’s determination and ongoing effort provided new opportunities for this underserved population.
Fast-forward to today and there are 115 Hopebridge Autism Therapy Centers across twelve states Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Ohio and Tennessee, with plans to bring care closer to home for even more communities around the country this year.
Hopebridge Founder and Chief Clinical Strategy Officer Kim Strunk has been awarded an IBJ 2022 Healthcare Hero award in the category of Community Achievement in Health Care. The Community Achievement in Health Care honors a company or organization that has successfully implemented a program that has addressed an acknowledged problem in health care administration or delivery.
Even now, almost two decades later as we’ve become one of the country’s largest autism therapy providers, Hopebridge works to uphold our mission. We continue to strive for the highest quality when it comes to our services, as our children deserve nothing but the best. While we hold ourselves accountable to our own standards, it’s important that we also continue to evaluate our clinical practice and approach to ensure we’re evolving on an even larger level.
As part of this, Hopebridge entered a rigorous clinical evaluation, which resulted in the Behavioral Health Centers of Excellence (BHCOE) recognition of our organization with a 2-Year Accreditation. After comprehensive interviews, a review of policies and procedures, formal site visits and surveys, Hopebridge is now a BHCOE Accredited Organization; showing the highest clinical quality and client care in applied behavior analysis (ABA therapy).
Thousands of children and their parents have experienced newfound pleasures in life thanks to the skills they built at Hopebridge over the years. Diagnostic services and ABA therapy are currently much more accessible to families nationwide, though Hopebridge still remains at the forefront of the industry through its one-on-one, individualized therapy and support services for kids with autism and their parents.
Just as we love seeing our children grow through these services, it’s moments like these that we wish to celebrate to continue to develop our team members, as well. If you are interested in joining our mission to offer best-in-class ABA therapy and complementary services like occupational therapy, speech therapy and autism testing, check out our open positions in locations across the country.
Want to make your own story alongside ours? Let us help your child lead his or her best life by connecting with us here. In addition to following our anniversary story each month, you can also stay up to date on our growth on our centers page to find the best location for your family.