Mesa’s Intentional Foods Earns Certified Autism Center™ Designation, Reinforcing Commitment to Inclusion and Accessibility

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Intentional Foods proudly announces its achievement of the Certified Autism Center™ (CAC) designation, granted by the International Board of Credentialing and Continuing Education Standards (IBCCES). By undergoing specialized training provided by IBCCES, the restaurant’s staff members have gained understanding and effective communication techniques to better serve autistic customers. As part of the Autism Certified City movement initiated by Visit Mesa, Intentional Foods joins the ranks of businesses committed to creating an inclusive environment for autistic and sensory-sensitive community.

Intentional Food Photo 1Lisa Heath, co-founder of Intentional Foods, expressed enthusiasm for the certification, stating, “With a desire to be the change and inspire inclusion, this opportunity to accredit our business and educate ourselves and our employees on how to better understand and serve autistic and sensory-sensitive individuals was a natural fit. At Intentional Foods, we strive to create an environment where everyone feels welcome, comfortable, and celebrated.”

The vision behind Intentional Foods was inspired by Lisa and Brendan Heath’s middle daughter, Sarah, who faces life-threatening food allergies. The Heath family envisioned a haven where friends and family could gather, share meals, and cherish worry-free moments together. At Intentional Foods, every dish is crafted from scratch and prepared without the top 9 most common food allergens, as well as being gluten and dairy-free, catering to the dietary needs of many autistic individuals.

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Intentional Foods HeaderReflecting on the significance of IBCCES certification programs and the broader scope of accessibility, Myron Pincomb, board chairman of IBCCES, stated, “At IBCCES, we believe that every individual deserves to be understood, supported, and included. Our certification programs empower businesses to become beacons of accessibility, promoting an inclusive environment for autistic and sensory-sensitive people. We commend Intentional Foods for their commitment to embracing this transformative journey and enhancing the lives of those they serve and the city of Mesa’s continued efforts.”

For more than 20 years, IBCCES has been the leader in cognitive disorder training and certification for health care, education, and corporate professionals around the globe. IBCCES created programs specifically for hospitality and recreational organizations such as hotels, theme parks, museums, and other attractions so staff would be more knowledgeable and other accommodations could be offered to this growing but underserved part of the community. IBCCES is the only credentialing board offering these types of programs, which include training from subject-matter experts and autistic self-advocates, as well as long-term support and continuous learning, onsite reviews, and more.

IBCCES also created and, as free online resources for families that lists certified locations and professionals. Each organization listed on the site has met Certified Autism Center™ (CAC) requirements.

About Intentional Foods:

Intentional Foods is a restaurant in Mesa, Arizona, founded by Lisa and Brendan Heath. Inspired by their daughter’s life-threatening food allergies, Intentional Foods offers a worry-free environment where friends and family can enjoy delicious meals together. All dishes are made from scratch without the top nine most common food allergens, gluten, or dairy, making it an ideal choice for individuals with dietary restrictions.


Committed to providing The Global Standard For Training and Certification in The Field of Cognitive Disorders – IBCCES provides a series of certifications that empower professionals to be leaders in their field and improve the outcomes for the individuals they serve. These programs are recognized around the world as the leading benchmark for training and certification in the areas of autism and other cognitive disorders.

Find Out How To Become A Certified Autism Center™


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