The SonRise program began after Barry and Samahria Kaufman received the devastating diagnosis that their young son Raun was severely mentally handicapped and incurably autistic. Medical professionals recommended institutionalization for the child. The Kaufman’s did not accept the bleak verdict of the medical community or the possibility that the boy was beyond hope. Barry and Samahria determined to find a means of building a bridge connecting them with the mysterious world that entrapped their young son. Through perseverance and dedication, the SonRise Program developed.
The Kaufmans, along with family and friends, worked feverishly and successfully built that bridge. Raun progressed and exhibiting no symptoms of his former condition, attended and graduated from college. Raun, his parents and other trained instructors now teach other families the means of connecting with their children using the SonRise program taught at the Autism Treatment Center of America.
Some of the principles of the SonRise program include learning what autism is and is not, understanding the child’s potential and learning methods that motivate an autistic child into having a loving, interactive relationship with the people around them. The SonRise program involves encouraging communication and interaction using one on one play, which provides moment-by-moment opportunities for breaking down the barriers of autism. Some of the treatment methodologies used in the SonRise program includes creating a special place for the autistic child filled with their favorite activities and playthings. Developing this space prevents routine distractions for parents and minimizes the sensory irritations experienced by the autistic child.