LEGOLAND earns "Certified Autism Center" designation

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LEGOLAND earns "Certified Autism Center" designation
May 02, 2022

"We are passionate about being a resort where families create amazing vacation memories and we thank our partners at IBCCES for helping us be more welcoming and inclusive for everyone," said Head of Marketing and Communications Kelly Hornick

LEGOLAND® Florida Resort in Winter Haven, Central Florida becomes the first theme complex to achieve Certified Autism Center (CAC) certification. This designation is valid for the entire complex, that is, it includes hotels and parks -- including the newly opened Peppa Pig Theme Park. The International Council on Accreditation and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES) bestows this moniker on organizations that complete employee training and certification, in addition to other requirements, including providing accommodation for visitors with cognitive impairments.

IBCCES conducted an on-site assessment across the entire LEGOLAND® complex to provide additional recommendations and options for autistic visitors and their families, as well as sensory guides to help guests understand and plan for the sensory impacts of each tour or attraction. The IBCCES training program includes information on understanding autism, communication strategies and best practices to enhance the onsite experience. Plus information from industry experts and perspectives from autistic individuals. Certification also requires ongoing learning, IBCCES support, and periodic renewal requirements to remain certified.

“We are proud that LEGOLAND® Florida Resort has partnered with IBCCES to earn our designation as a Certified Autism Center across the theme complex. We are passionate about being a resort where families create amazing vacation memories and we thank our partners at IBCCES for helping us be more welcoming and inclusive to everyone, including those with sensory needs,” said Kelly Hornick, Head of Marketing and Communications at LEGOLAND. ® Florida Resort and the Peppa Pig Theme Park.

Many autistic individuals and people with sensory sensitivities may find it difficult to visit new places or plan family trips due to lack of training and understanding of local staff, or potential sensory overload and need for flexible options or accommodations. In response to this need, IBCCES has created training and certification programs specifically for attractions, hotels, zoos, aquariums and other recreational spaces to ensure that everyone, without exception, can create memories and have fun.

As Certified Autism Centers™, LEGOLAND® Florida Resort will provide:

  • Trained, helpful, frontline staff members equipped to better serve autistic guests or people with other sensory sensitivities and help them enjoy their time at the complex.
  • A sensory guide for each attraction that provides information on how the attraction or tour may be affected by each of the five senses to make it easier for individuals and families to plan activities that align with their needs and accommodations.
  • Low sensory areas to allow guests with sensory sensitivities to take a break and relax in a less stimulating environment.
  • An updated Accessibility Guide will be available on  the complex 's official website  and in the Guest Relations areas.

“IBCCES is excited to partner with LEGOLAND® Florida Resort to help them enhance the guest experience in this unique setting that provides a comprehensive experience for families to stay and play together,” said Myron Pincomb, Chairman of the IBCCES Board. . “The commitment to ongoing training and accessibility improvements helps ensure there are more options for families to create memories together that we all cherish.”

For more than 20 years, IBCCES has been a leader in cognitive disorders training and certification for healthcare, education and corporate professionals around the world. It is the only accrediting organization that provides this type of certification, which includes evidence-based training as well as the perspectives of autistic individuals, as well as other tools and resources such as on-site reviews and personalized recommendations and renewal requirements to ensure the program is long-term commitment that has a lasting impact.

IBCCES also created, a free online resource for parents that lists certified destinations and connects families to other resources and to each other. Each destination listed on the website has met the requirements of the Certified Autism Center™ (CAC).


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