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Who Does THRIVE Help?

The THRIVE app was born from a mother seeking a streamlined, accessible and functional way to support her children with autism. She saw first-hand the positive impact of picture scheduling and self-regulation strategies — both for her sons and for their adult support system. While also experiencing the learning curve of implementing those supports on a daily basis, she garnered a sense of humility and a deep, intuitive knowledge-base that’s proven invaluable (to say the least). From these initial experiences, the wheels began spinning, momentum came as a natural part of the process, necessity made way for new inventions & endeavors, and THRIVE was created!

While the THRIVE app and community are centered on meeting the needs of individuals with autism, the benefits of the app reach beyond autism: to professional groups, practices, populations and individuals.


At its core, THRIVE provides a picture schedule and prompts self-regulation strategies at the touch of one’s own smartwatch. These are tools that are useful for a very wide variety of people — whether inside or outside the direct autistic community. So much so that instead of tying the tools to a diagnosis, there’s a greater benefit of simply relating tool usage to a broader area of need.



  • Does your child struggle to transition between activities?

  • Is your teenager having difficulty independently completing morning and evening self-care routines?

  • Is your child working to implement different strategies to maintain and elicit calmness when they are distressed?

These are inquiries definitive of executive functioning (the process of choosing and monitoring behaviors that are in alignment with a specific goal) allotment(s). Many children with autism experience difficulties with executive functioning skills, but many children who do not have autism also need support in developing these skills.

Children with diagnoses such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), executive functioning disorder (EFD), traumatic brain injuries (TBI), Down syndrome and various genetic/developmental differences may have difficulties in these areas. These children, together with their adult supporters, may greatly benefit from the elements of the THRIVE app.


What about the children without any formalized diagnoses — cognitive, behavioral, or otherwise? Are they able to utilize and benefit from the THRIVE app?

The answer is a simple, warm yes

Children without a diagnosis can also benefit from the features in the THRIVE app and are both encouraged and prompted to do so. For example, the use of a visual schedule (highly featured within THRIVE) provides predictability and clarity during the day — something that we can all benefit from.  

Our hope and desire is for the THRIVE app to be an INCLUSIVE tool — positively and beneficially affecting the lives of a diverse audience.


Mary Hart MacLeod, MS, OTR/L, BCP

Pediatric Occupational Therapist


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