Having a child with a disability can be challenging for families in a number of ways.
Strains that many families may experience
- Financial strain: Many families face additional expenses related to their child's disability, such as medical treatment, therapies, and special equipment. These expenses can be significant and may put a financial strain on the family.
- Emotional strain: Caring for a child with a disability can be emotionally demanding, especially if the child has a severe disability or is in pain. Parents may feel a sense of grief, loss, or guilt, and may struggle with feelings of isolation or loneliness.
- Physical strain: Caring for a child with a disability may require a significant amount of physical effort, such as lifting, carrying, or transferring the child. This can be physically demanding, especially for parents who are older or have physical limitations of their own.
- Time constraints: Caring for a child with a disability may require a significant amount of time and may interfere with other responsibilities and activities. This can be especially challenging for parents who are also working or have other children to care for.
- Strain on relationships: The additional demands and stress of caring for a child with a disability can also put a strain on relationships within the family and with friends and extended family. It's important for families to seek support and find ways to manage these strains and maintain healthy relationships.
The cost of equipment and other expenses related to a child's disability can be a significant financial burden for families. The specific cost will depend on the child's needs and the type of equipment required.
Some examples of equipment that may be needed include:
- Mobility equipment, such as wheelchairs or scooters
- Communication devices, such as augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) devices
- Adaptive seating and positioning equipment
- Assistive technology, such as switches or eye-gaze systems
- Medical equipment, such as oxygen tanks or suction machines
- Sensory toys and portable sensory environments
The cost of these items can vary widely and may not be covered by insurance. Some families may be able to find financial assistance through government programs or non-profit organizations, but these resources may not be sufficient to cover all of the expenses. It can be difficult for families to afford the equipment their child needs, and they may have to make difficult financial decisions in order to get the necessary support.
Financial assistance for families with disabilities
There are a number of financial assistance programs available for families with children with disabilities. These programs can help families cover the cost of medical treatment, therapies, equipment, and other expenses related to their child's disability. Some examples of financial assistance programs that may be available to families with disabled children include:
Help for disabilities in the UK:
- Charities and grant providers: In the UK there are dozens of specialist charities that work incredibly hard to provide services, essential equipment and sensory toys to help with day to day care and aids to stimulate, relax and calm.
- Disability Living Allowance: The DLA is a tax free benefit for people with disabilities who need help with mobility or care costs.
- Medicaid: Medicaid is a federal and state program that provides health insurance to low-income individuals and families. Children with disabilities may be eligible for Medicaid coverage, which can help cover the cost of medical treatment and therapy.
- Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP): CHIP is a federal program that provides health insurance to children in families with low or moderate incomes. Children with disabilities may be eligible for CHIP coverage, which can help cover the cost of medical treatment and therapy.
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI): SSI is a federal program that provides financial assistance to low-income individuals and families who are blind, disabled, or over 65. Children with disabilities may be eligible for SSI, which can help cover the cost of living expenses and medical treatment.
- Special Needs Trusts: A special needs trust is a legal document that allows families to set aside money or other assets for a person with a disability. The trust can be used to pay for expenses related to the person's disability, such as medical treatment, therapy, or equipment.
- Non-profit organizations: There are many non-profit organizations that provide financial assistance or other support to families with children with disabilities. These organizations may offer grants, loans, or other forms of assistance to help families cover the cost of expenses related to their child's disability.
Help for disabilities in Australia:
- NDIS: The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is an independent statutory agency provides funding to eligible people with disability to gain more time with family and friends, greater independence, access to new skills, jobs, or volunteering in their community, and an improved quality of life. The NDIS Australia's first national Scheme for people with disabilities.
- Not for profits and charity organisations:
It's important to note that eligibility for these programs may vary depending on factors such as income, assets, and the specific needs of the child. Families with disabled children should explore all of their options and seek the advice of a financial planner or attorney if needed.
How can we raise funds to provide equipment for children with needs?
There are a number of ways you can raise money to help cover the costs of caring for your disabled child. Some options you might consider include:
- Crowdfunding: Crowdfunding platforms, such as GoFundMe or Kickstarter, allow you to create a campaign to raise money from a large number of people. You can share your story and explain why you are raising money, and people can donate to your campaign.
- Fundraisers: You can organize a fundraiser, such as a bake sale, car wash, or silent auction, to raise money for your child. You can involve friends, family, and members of your community in the planning and execution of the fundraiser.
- Grants and financial assistance: You may be able to find grants or other forms of financial assistance to help cover the costs of caring for your child. Non-profit organizations, foundations, and government agencies may offer grants or other financial assistance to families with disabled children.
- Insurance coverage: You may be able to get insurance coverage for some of the costs associated with your child's disability.
- Special needs trusts: A special needs trust is a legal document that allows you to set aside money or other assets for your child with a disability. The trust can be used to pay for expenses related to your child's disability, such as medical treatment, therapy, or equipment.
It's important to explore all of your options and seek the advice of a financial planner or attorney if needed. Raising money for your disabled child may require some effort and creativity, but there are many resources available to help you get the support you need.