Doris-Duan Young Autism centre for web
Doris-Duan Young Autism Centre Image Credit: Supplied

DDY is grateful and honoured to have the chance to help and support more than 200 families since it was opened in 2014. The growing number of success stories in DDY wouldn’t be possible without the dedication and expertise of its health professionals, licensed by Dubai Healthcare City Authority and certified by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board®. As this year continues to challenge us with a lot of uncertainties, DDY remains committed to delivering quality services and securing the safety of both its children and employees. In order to achieve this, DDY Management together with its Quality Team ensures that the center follows the up-to-date infection control guidelines mandated by Dubai Healthcare City Authority (DHCA), Dubai Health Authority (DHA) and Ministry of Health and Prevention (MOH).

DDY is dedicated to keep its children and youth as well as staff safe from both a health and behavioral perspective. DDY has been actively training its Clinical Team in various ways to make sure that it only offers the best therapeutic services. Recently, DDY therapists completed their Safe Management Group Training (SMG) supervised by Inas Ktaech our Clinical Director. Safety is always a top priority in any workplace and even more in centers like DDY who handles children and young adults of determination with challenging behaviors. This SMG Training is a proud achievement of DDY as it shows that the center doesn’t only focus on providing excellence with its services but it also ensures that safety for both staff and children is secured at all times.

Individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) might engage in challenging behaviors for a variety of reasons. Some of the triggers can include the following:

- Have trouble understanding non-verbal communication

- May have trouble communicating their own wants and needs, which can lead to frustration

- Change in routine may be upsetting and lead to challenging behaviors

- Difficulty with transitioning from one activity to another

- Sensory sensitivities

- Sensory overload and might get upset if the environment is overstimulating

- Trying to escape demands

- Trying to get access to something they want (e.g., iPad, chocolate, attention)

At DDY, we work on behaviour management by teaching skills using ABA strategies (i.e., visual schedule, positive reinforcement, environmental manipulation, teaching replacement skills etc.).

However, at times a child is unable to regulate their emotions and that can sometimes lead to a crisis situation. This is why DDY believes it is very important that staff working with individuals with ASD are appropriately trained on crisis intervention in order to ensure safety. We are proud to announce that DDY is the first and only Autism center in the UAE who is trained in SMG Crisis intervention.

DDY Clinical Director, Inas Ktaech is a certified SMG Crisis Intervention Trainer. DDY successfully trained and certified all of our clinical staff who work with children and youth of determination.

What is SMG?

SMG is a Canadian company recognized and accredited that it is in compliance with all Ministry Standards regarding crisis intervention training. It is designed and reviewed by a team of BCBA-D, Psychologists, behavioral analysts, education specialists and physical intervention experts. SMG works on teaching staff how to effectively de-escalate crisis situation through nonphysical and/or through physical intervention if needed. Examples of non-physical intervention includes risk management (i.e., environmental preparation), relationship management (i.e., communication techniques), behavior management (i.e., developing behavior profiles) and aggression management (i.e., aggression escalation continuum) skills. If non-physical interventions do not suffice, staff are taught how to physically intervene in order to keep their client safe.

Physical intervention would be the last resort and only utilized if the client is at imminent risk of harm to self or others. Examples of physical intervention includes how to safely block strikes, kicks, bites, wrist grabs, chokes, hair pulls and clothing grabs. The techniques taught through SMG ensures that the client does not get hurt and the staff are safe as well. If more intrusive measures are required (i.e., escort or containment), the DDY team ensures that a behavior plan is written and that parents provide informed consent. DDY is open to provide assistance to all interested individuals in knowing more about SMG Training.

You can reach the centre through these numbers for inquiries: 04 431 2890 and 052 613 9928


“The training was very informative and exciting from the day we started until the end. It is a kind of training that we will surely benefit from the ABA field. The online training served as a way for us to know how and why we do certain techniques and approaches while the physical training taught us the proper moves and stance in dealing with challenging behaviors without compromising anyone’s safety. Overall, the training wouldn’t be this excellent without our amazing trainer.”

- Regine Capulong, ABA Therapist, DDY Autism Center

“The practical exercises were useful in offering 'hands on' experience that I can apply in my work. The interactive atmosphere and live examples used for illustration were very useful.”

- Katreen Alzain, ABA Therapist, DDY Autism Center

“The training was a fun learning experience that gave us more confidence and helped us to be equipped to handle both verbal and physical aggression confrontations in our workplace. Together with our great facilitator who has done it all and made it easier for us to understand the purpose of the SMG training. With this I am greatly thankful for our Centre for providing us this big opportunity to learn and acquire proper skills in managing aggressive behaviors.”

- Princess Durano, ABA Therapist, DDY Autism Center

For more information and updates about our center, follow our Social Media pages: