Beaches Resorts is continuing its efforts to provide autism-friendly vacations to travelers by attaining Advanced Certified Autism Center (ACAC) designation by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES).
This new certification training, which is to be completed by the end of this month, spans all three Beaches Resorts—Beaches Negril Beach Resort & Spa and Beaches Ocho Rios Spa, Golf & Waterpark Resort in Jamaica, and Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort Villages & Spa.
“We are proud to continue paving the way for families with individuals who have special needs, including children on the autism spectrum, to travel comfortably and truly live up to our tagline—the ‘Resorts for Everyone,’” said Adam Stewart, deputy chairman of Sandals Resorts International, in press materials. “As a family-built brand, we want to provide all families with a superior level of service that makes them feel the most welcomed at our resorts.”
Beaches Resorts first earned its designation as a Certified Autism Center in April 2017, but this new level of certification will underscore the company’s efforts to further train its staff and provide substantial modifications for visitors with autism or similar sensory needs. This new ACAC training focuses mainly on the company’s Kids Camp, Entertainment and watersports operations, as well as staff from other areas of the resort.
Beaches Resorts’ watersports teams have already completed the ACAC training and certification in conjunction with a collaboration between the Professional Association of Dive Instructors (PADI) and IBCCES. The certification makes appropriate programming from autism-certified staff available for families looking to enjoy daily PADI-certified diving at the Beaches properties.
“Diving has frequently proven to be a transformative and healing experience for individuals with physical or emotional challenges and their families,” said Kristin Valette-Wirth, chief marketing officer of PADI Worldwide, in press materials. “Together with Beaches Resorts and IBCCES, we look forward to inspiring and enabling more travel and shared experiences for all to create lifelong memories that have the power to transform lives.”
Other special services offered by Beaches Resorts include:
- A personalized pre-travel questionnaire to identify requests and preferences with a dedicated Special Services team to assist in the vacation planning process
- A Culinary Concierge program to support specific dietary restrictions and special requests
- Modified check-in options for private, in-room, check-in and the availability of sensory toys for children during check-in
- Identification of quiet spaces during noisier times of the day and evening
- Modified design and decoration in Kids Camps and Entertainment areas to create a more sensory-friendly environment
- A One-on-One Beaches Buddy program providing personalized, private childcare with a buddy who is certified by IBCCES