Focusing in class is difficult enough as it is for children in school, but those with learning disabilities may find themselves having a tougher time than their peers. Without proper resources, children with learning disabilities are oftentimes left behind to fend for themselves.
At an early age, startup founder Yury Yakubchyk ran into a few roadblocks on his educational journey. He soon found out that he was diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Yakubchyk’s ADHD, when left unchecked, meant he couldn’t even attend class.
Yakubchyk credits applied behavior analysis (ABA) therapy as the main key to his success. Since then, he went on to start multiple businesses, including Life House, a hospitality company, and Wing, a wireless carrier.
Yakubchyk’s most recent endeavor, Sprout Therapy, is focused on using technology to expand healthcare access to autistic children in need. The San Francisco-based company announced it raised $10 million in a seed round led by General Catalyst on Tuesday.
“I probably wouldn’t have been able to get a proper education, make friends and have that whole experience in life,” Yakubchyk, founder and CEO of Sprout Therapy, said in an interview with Built In. “[ABA therapy] allowed me to find coping mechanisms that made sense for me.”
Sprout Therapy uses its software-enabled platform to match families with healthcare providers, therapists and experts for children with autism. According to the company, the platform offers families a free assessment to properly diagnose children in a matter of days in most cases.
“Today’s outdated autism care model severely underserves children and families by, among other things, de-prioritizing those who are unable to afford a formal autism evaluation from a child psychologist,” Yakubchyk said in a statement.
Immediately following a diagnosis, families are virtually matched with therapists who create personalized, at-home care plans that include speech and language therapy, ABA therapy and occupational therapy. Sprout Therapy also assists families with tracking progress, coordinating care and refining their care plans, as needed.
The additional capital will primarily be used for product development, as the company is currently developing iPad-based interactive games and learning modules for children with autism. Sprout is also looking to expand the size of its engineering team.
As Yakubchyk looks to the future, he intends to broadly expand the range of services offered on Sprout. The company intends to help its clients find the care that they need for a wide range of health-related subjects, beyond autism. According to Yakubchyk, Sprout is in talks to collaborate with five of the largest healthcare providers in the United States.
“There are a lot of other conditions where we think we can be helpful in the home, especially during this crazy time,” Yakubchyk said to Built In.
Additional investors Bling Capital and Felicis Ventures also participated in the round, among others. Sprout Therapy has additional offices in New York, Toronto and Montreal.