Meet Jason Doyen
Jason Doyen was born in Indiana in 1975. During the first 22 months of his life, Jason’s development was normal, even exceptional, according to his father, John. “His mother, Gloria, and I were truly blessed,” he remembers. “Jason’s first year was the happiest of our lives. He was so perfect – a happy, loving child.”
A few months later, Jason began to change. He began losing his speech. He cried uncontrollably and couldn’t be comforted. His parents took him to a specialist who recommended Jason be evaluated at the Indiana University Children’s Learning Center.
That is when John and Gloria began their search for help. Gloria started by contacting the National Society for Autistic Children. The local pre-school program was more than 30 miles away from their home and, while the staff were nice, they had no idea how to deal with special needs children. John and Gloria knew there had to be something better. According to John, “We had two options, stay with what was available or try to find something better.”
In 1981, the Doyen’s search led them to San Antonio and the Autism Treatment Center. Gloria convinced North East ISD to place Jason with ATC. “Mr. Parker, the director, was special and had a great staff of young women whose patience and dedication worked,” says John. Some of the same children who attended ATC’s school with Jason all those years ago are now living in ATC group homes and attending the Meaningful Living, Meaningful Work day program with him. Like Jason, their behaviors have greatly improved and they stay busy being productive and active in the community.
“I’m very pleased with my son’s progress,” says John. “Special needs children need special care, and ATC has provided that. I’ll forever be thankful for the Autism Treatment Center”.