iTaalk Autism Foundation is a 501c3 Non Profit, providing interactive technology education and solutions to individuals with autism and related special needs, their parents and the professionals that serve them.
TUESDAY's  TREASURES:
Finding Funds

Tuesday's Treasures is a weekly blog that features a different non-profit offering grants and/or funding to families/individuals. We will provide current information on the grant, details for qualification, deadlines, and also tips from the organization itself. 


Throughout 2012, Tuesday's Treasures will highlight 52 different organizations in hopes that at least one will meet the need(s) of each parent/family in the iTaalk circle of friends!  
2013 Tuesday Treasure #2--The Puzzling Piece iPad Challenge

 

Everyone can receive an iPad. This wonderful organization developed a program that not only brings awareness to autism; they help families, schools, and other organizations fundraise to get iPads.

thepuzzlingpiece

Sell 60 pieces of qualifing items and you get a brand new iPad mailed to you. Sound easy? It is. There are puzzle piece necklaces, key chains, & corkscrews for those wanting to promote autism awareness. There are also hearts and Smiling Sams for anyone that loves a child with special needs.

 

If you would like to get started contact Melissa Winters at info@thepuzzlingpiece.com or 201-602-0547 and she will help you get a page set up to start selling your pieces. With social media, e-mail and combinding with other fundraising events you'll be surprised at how quickly you'll sell 60 pieces.

 

Check out the items at http://thepuzzlingpiece.com/ipad.html  

 

Tuesday Treasure #1 for 2013---Benefits.gov

 

This is an image of the Benefits.gov homepage with an official YouTube logo.As part of celebrating Benefits.gov's 10th anniversary of citizen service, they are pleased to offer you a new and exciting way to stay connected with Benefits.gov: our YouTube channel, now featuring their first tutorial video.

You can learn how to get the most value out of using Benefits.gov by visiting the official Benefits.gov YouTube channel at www.youtube.com/BenefitsGOV. If you already have a YouTube account, you can subscribe to the Benefits.gov YouTube channel by clicking the "Subscribe" button at the top of the channel page. Subscribing allows you to receive notifications when new videos are posted and provides an easy way to quickly access your favorite Benefits.gov videos. Even if you do not have a YouTube account, you can still view the informative and helpful videos about the Benefits.gov site and its features at any time.

The Benefits.gov YouTube channel currently showcases a self-help video about the site's confidential prescreening tool, the Benefit Finder. The Benefit Finder Tutorial video is a step-by-step visual guide designed to help you better understand how the Benefit Finder works. This short but informative tutorial also aims to help answer common questions you may have while using the Benefit Finder tool. To turn on the closed captioning, or to use translation, please click on the "CC" icon below the video to adjust your settings.

 

Tuesday Treasure #52

Hang in there. We are going to continue Tuesday Treasures but just trying to modify the blog so it will keep all the past weeks' posts. We do realize what a great resource this is and hope you keep sharing your resources with us too!!!

Tuesday Treasure #51 Friends of Man

Friends of Man helps:

  • Children
  • Families
  • The Elderly
  • The Disabled
  • Those who fall through the safety net of available assistance

Friends of Man provides:

Friends of Man helps people of all ages with a large variety of needs:

  • Mobility Equipment: (prostheses, wheelchairs, van lifts, and modifications, ramps, home modifications)
  • Medical Equipment and Procedures
  • Hearing Aids, Dentures,Glasses
  • Basic Needs: Clothing for Children, Food
  • Short-term Daycare, Prescriptions, Cobra/Health Insurance
Friends of Man



Friends of Man accepts applications ONLY from a referring professional on behalf of the applicant. This can be a social worker, doctor, nurse, school counselor, teacher, principal, social worker, clergy, health care technician, etc. Applications CAN NOT be submitted by the vendor.

Applications found at www.friendsofman.org 

Tuesday Treasure #50 The Prayer Child Foundation

prayer cjhild                                                                                                                                                              Many children, by no fault of their own, are in need of help each and every day. Many of the children and their parents pray daily for a healthier life. The mission of the Prayer Child Foundation is to have a hand in answering their prayers and helping these children to have the joys of a normal childhood. The Foundation seeks to provide this assistance to living children that are eighteen years old and younger with physical and emotional challenges. The Foundation provides support to national children’s charities, individuals and organizations located within our supporters’ local communities. The Foundation provides opportunities for individuals, companies, and other groups to empower themselves by giving, getting involved with other like minded individuals and being compassionate to those less fortunate.


This organization helps so many. Check out their 12 Incredible Stories on their Facebook page and you will see all the different needs they are helping. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Prayer-Child-Foundation/368992649792762?fref=ts 

Then apply at  www.prayerchild.org  

Tuesday Treasure #49 Autism Speaks iPad2 Grant!

Autism Speaks is thrilled to announce that through the generosity of Sevenly.org and the James W. Pickle Foundation, 625 financially disadvantaged individuals with autism and schools will receive an Apple iPad 2!

Eligible applicants are individuals who:
- Have been diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder by a licensed professional,
- Reside in the United States,
- Have limited income and cannot afford to purchase an iPad.

Note: If you already submitted an application for the iPad 2 grant in February 2012, you must re-apply to be considered for the new round.


  Technology Grant Timeline

December 3: Online Application Opens
December 7: Application Closes
December 7-14: Review Committee Selects Recipients
December 17: Recipients Announced and iPads sent out!!


   How to Apply


Applications must be submitted by the person with autism, an immediate family member of the person with autism, or a licensed teacher, social worker, or therapist. The Technology Grant Review Committee will review eligible applications based on established criteria and select the iPad grant recipients. Some applicants will be contacted by staff for follow up information. All applicants selected to receive an iPad 2 will be contacted on December 17. Others will receive an email informing them of their status.

Visit the AutismCares website to apply! You must create a login and select Autism Speaks iPad Grant.

 
Questions or comments? 
Contact Serena Selkin, Family Services Grants Manager at sselkin@autismspeaks.org or (917) 475-5059.

Note: Please DO NOT complete the application entitled "AutismCares Application" if you are applying for an iPad. Only those applicants that complete the application entitled “Autism Speaks iPad Grant” will be considered.

Note:
Only applicants in the United States will be considered. We cannot accept applications from outside the United States.

Earlier this year, Autism Speaks was able to award 180 iPads to families across the USA. Read more about it here!

 

Tuesday Treasure #48 Gia Nicole Angel Foundation

The mission of the Gia Nicole Angel Foundation is to enhance the daily functioning of a child with special needs and his or her family by awarding assistance through the purchase of a specific item or items. This includes children with any physical disability (such as, but not limited to: spina bifida, paralysis, missing limbs) or illness (such as, but not limited to: cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, cancer). Funds are awarded on a case by case basis with preference given to lower income and single parent families. Families who wish to receive assistance must complete an application and demonstrate financial need. Applications are accepted at any time. www.giafoundation.com

Tuesday Treasure #47 FUND IT FORWARD

This organization was founded by two mothers of special needs children who saw an amazing opportunity to help families with children like their own.

Many times, families must sacrifice time, money, freedom and sleep in order to provide a safe and secure environment for their special needs child. FUND IT FORWARD was born out of a desire to help families obtain the medical or adaptive equipment needed to create a functional environment for their special needs children. Rose and Jackie believe the majority of money raised by their volunteers should go towards the needs of the children and their families. They want to see families in situations similar to theirs benefit from this organization. Rose and Jackie donated their own time and money to start FUND IT FORWARD and vow to continue to keep the needs of each individual child as their primary focus and priority. If FUND IT FORWARD is unable to assist you with the support you are seeking, they will guide you to the right channels to receive aid. FUND IT FORWARD wants families to thrive and succeed regardless of their special circumstances.

 

 

There are several advantages to fundraising with FUND IT FORWARD:

 

1.Fundraising support to help you create a successful event.

2.Providing your donors with a taxable deduction through a 501(c)(3) approved organization.

3.Promoting your fundraising event through publicity on our website and social media.

4.Guiding you through the application process to submit your medical or adaptive equipment request.

5.Obtaining discounts on medical equipment not available to the general public.

6.Encouraging and supporting families through a community network of advocates for special needs.

FUND IT FORWARD

You are not raising money for your own equipment; you are raising money for future families in need. The mission of their organization is to help families within their community of families and any additional money raised will be funded forward to another family in need. This is the founding principal behind their organization. So if this seems like something you would be interested in check out www.funditfwd.org !!!

Tuesday Treasure #46 Midwest Council for Children with Disabilities

The Midwest Council for Children with Disabilities was founded in 1997 by a group of
small business owners to provide financial assistance to children challenged physically,
developmentally or cognitively.

MCCD provides families of these children the means to pursue medical treatments
and therapies that are not covered by health insurance.

100% OF EVERY DOLLAR RAISED AFTER THE COST
OF AN EVENT IS USED FOR THE CHILDREN!


MCCD has no employees and no overhead. No director receives financial compensation,
nor does any director have children in the program.

MCCD

With fundraising becoming increasingly more difficult they need to enlist the recipient family's help. As part of the assistance application, the Midwest Council for Children with Disabilities requests that applying recipients commit to a fundraising campaign that would generate funds back to MCCD equaling a minimum of 20% of your 12 month grant.

Illinois

1845 East Rand Road
Suite L111
Arlington Heights, IL 60004

Wisconsin

21 S. Lake Street
PO Box 86
Elkhart Lake, WI 53020

Ohio

23818 Cooper Turn
Olmsted Falls, OH 44138

Check them out at www.mccdcares.com

Tuesday Treasure #45 is Kiddie Pool Equipment funding by Adaptivemall






Here's how it works:

1) Fill out the Kiddie Pool Sign Up Form

2) Adaptivemall.com will create your child's webpage using the photograph and information you've uploaded in the sign up form. This will take 2-5 business days.

3) Adaptivemall.com will prepare an e-mail and send it to you. You will forward it to your friends and family directly.

4) The email will link your friends and family to your child's Kiddie Pool Page where they can choose the amount of their donation.

5) Adaptivemall.com will notify you when each donation has been made and when you reach your desired goal.

6) Once your goal is reached, you can order the child's equipment.

So you raise the exact amout you need for the equipment. Any further questions check out their website at 

http://www.adaptivemall.com/kiddiepool1.html

Tuesday Treasure #44 Pervis Jackson, Jr. Autism Foundation

pjjraf

 

Mission:To provide a spoonful of comfort to the parents of children handicapped by autism and other disabilities.

Vision: Parents impacted positively which creates a paradigm shift in how they care for their children with autism and other disabilities.

Goal: To provide mini-grants to pay for services directly to parents.

Grants can be used for:

  • Camp Sessions
  • Respite of Parent's Choice
  • Cleaning Help
  • Cooking Help
  • Spa Day
  • Urgent Bills
  • Other Parent Needs

Higher income parents of a disabled child have an advantage that lower income parents do not. They can pay for these services themselves.

Therefore the foundation is open to parents who can show financial need, such as public assistance, Title 1, free lunch cards, etc.

http://www.pjjraf.org/contactus.htm

Tuesday Treasure # 43 Amrit Foundation

The Amrit Foundation offers need-based grants to individuals up to $5000 to help pursue biomedical interventions for children affected with Autism and related disorders.

Families interested in applying for grants from the foundation should email and request a grant application. www.amritfoundation.org

Tuesday Treasure #42 Lil MAC Kids Foundation

Due to the high costs of ASD therapies, many families are unable to provide the early intervention or on-going therapy their children so desperately need. The Lil MAC Kids Foundation has given out more than $100,000 in grants to children in the State of Ohio. Some of the most needy have received grants of up to $5,000 for therapy, living expenses or even buying reliable transportation. Others might just need help paying for an iPad or other teaching aids.

 

Go to http://www.lilmackids.org/grant-application.html to apply.

Applications are taken from October through November. All applications will be reviewed by the board of directors for funding consideration. Notification of fund awards will be made no later than December 15.

 

Please Note - The Lil MAC Autism Grant is awarded only to families in Ohio.

Lil MAC 

Tuesday Treasure # 41 Conover's Mobile Tech Grant

Individuals, parents, caretakers, teachers, counselors, religious leaders, private organizations and public organizations within the United States are eligible to apply for this grant. The grants are currently targeted to the use of iPod and iPad devices to assist individuals in improving their ability to function independently in their homes, schools, workplaces and communities. Successful grantees will receive either an iPod or an iPad preloaded with all Conover Company Functional Skills System videos to assist individuals in developing freedom and independence.

 

The purpose of the Conover Mobile Technology Grant is to promote the use of mobile technology and their apps to improve an individual’s freedom and independence. Apply on line at http://conovercompany.com/grants/mobile-technology-application Conover

Tuesday Treasure #40 is Parker's Purpose

 

 

Families can apply for as much as $1,000 in unrestricted funds to help ease the expenses -- food, lodging, gasoline, no matter what -- that often accompany long-term medical treatment. Parker's Purpose is one of the few organizations that pay directly to families, not providers for services.

 

 

The hope of the foundation is to not only help people that are in need but to also foster a positive self worth and self esteem to the individuals giving. Parker's Purpose believe's there is nothing more uplifting than knowing you are helping someone and making their life better for it. Through this they are hopeful it can spark a change in our society on how we treat each other and ourselves (Decrease abuse whether it be drugs, alcohol, gambling, sex, verbal, domestic, physical etc.).

 

Make sure to check out www.parkerspurpose.net

Tuesday Treasure #39 Aubrey Rose Foundation

Aubrey Rose FundationThe Mission of the Aubrey Rose Foundation

Their mission is to help families caring for children with life threatening illnesses with their focus being on the family unity. They strive to lift families from life's complexities during this difficult time by providing emotional and financial support.

 

Application Timelines

Grants are awarded on a quarterly basis. The Foundation's Board of Trustees meet in March, June, September and December. Applicants will be notified no later than 60 days after the Board of Trustees' meeting.

Eligibility

The Aubrey Rose Foundation helps families with children who are currently living with a life-threatening medical condition. Grants are awarded based on need. If a family has outstanding medical bills that insurance will not cover, our Foundation can possibly help out a family in need until our annual funds have been exhausted. As our funds grow, so will the number and the amount of help we will be able to give. We appreciate families just asking for one grant per family so that we can help as many families as possible.

Ineligible Requests

Ineligible requests such as medical bills already paid, submitting for food, clothing, laundry fees, mortgage payments and associated homeowner bills and anything deemed non-medical for your child will not be acceptable criteria to submit a grant request.

 

Apply at www.aubreyrose.org and if you have any questions contact 513-265-5801.

Tuesday Treasure #38 Insurance codes for iPad and APPs

As I have mentioned before, I do contact each funding source before posting them as a Tuesday Treasure. That being said, I haven't been getting as quick of responses as I had earlier in the year. I like to try and get specifics on services and equipment they do fund. Also any restrictions or suggestions they can give in applying. Anything to make it easier for our families!!!

 

One step that a lot of funding organizations are requiring families to do BEFORE applying for a grant is submitting a claim through insurance for the therapy, item or service they are looking to get funded. THEN if not covered by insurance you apply for a grant. The hope is that insurance will cover it. Right?

 

Having an EOB (Explanation of Benefits) or a copy of your benefit coverage showing that the service/item is not covered then allows you to apply for grants. I always suggest appealing though. So that is why I have taken this week to share a couple helpful suggestions for Billing and Coding when trying to get an iPad and/or APPs covered by insurance. (Thank you Tony Gentry, PhD OTR/L for sharing your vast knowledge in Assistive Technology!)

 

97755- Assistive Technology Assessment

*To restore, augment or compensate for existing function, optimize functional tasks and/or environmental accessibility (for assessment and reassessment only)

 

E2511- Speech Generating Software (TapToTalk, Proloquo2go, & other AAC apps)

 

97532- Cognition skill Development

*Development of cognitive skills to improve attention, memory, problem solving, (includes compensatory training)

 

97535- ADL/Home Management

*Activities of daily living (ADL) and compensatory training, meal preparation, safety procedures, and instructions in use of assistive technology devices/adaptive equipment (including home environment/modif analysis)

 

97537-Community/work reintegration training

*eg. shopping, transportation, money management, avocational activities and/or work environment/modification analysis, work task analysis, use of assistive technology device/adaptive equipment.

 

Please note that Medicare does not consider "consumer products" as assistive technology. State Rehab Services: Typically, yes, if vocationally relevant.

Tuesday Treasure # 37 iTaalk's App Facilitator Program

iTaalk's App Facilitator Program:

PROGRAM GUIDELINES
Please read thoroughly before applying.

The App Facilitator Program was created to provide assistance for families, individuals and service providers in obtaining an App or Program that would otherwise be unattainable for the family. Guidelines for this program are listed below:

1) The App Facilitator Program will grant apps with a minimum cost of $25, and a maximum of FIVE apps/programs in a calendar year at a value of less than $250 total for each individual or therapist enrolled in the program.  This program requires significant volunteer power, so we limit this value/qty in order to ensure as many individuals have the opportunity to participate as possible.  Not all requests will be accommodated, but we will do all in our power to get as many met as possible. Applicants must CURRENTLY OWN THE DEVICE for which they are requesting apps.

2) When applying for this program, please be prepared to provide the following:

- Individual's Diagnosis Letter (Can be any Medical Dx, but must come from a licensed professional on letterhead with current contact information) or a copy of your most recent, VALID licensure for your position.
- Name and Contact Information of an appropriate Professional* (Speech Therapist, OT, Special Education Teacher, etc) who will help ensure a successful implementation for this app/program, OR a letter from your director supervisor* stating your current position and employment.  *May be contacted by iTaalk.
- The Name of the App, Cost and Developer information**
- A brief (250-500 words) explanation of why your app request is necessary for you, your patients, or your child's success, how it will be used, and why you have been unable to purchase yourself.  Take advantage of the opportunity to tell your story.  
- Basic contact information of parent(s) and child.

3) Program is available worldwide and open to ALL disabilities and ages (as long as there is sufficient documentation of dx).  Applications must be completed or translated into English.  Thank you.

**For Proloquo2go requests, please visit Easter Seals DuPage and the Fox Valley Region.  With the high demand for P2G, specialized requirements make it more efficient to apply directly with Easter Seals.  We are extremely happy to provide details for this wonderful program with Easter Seals and P2G, and think it is an equally responsible program for app facilitation. iTaalk is happy to be working with P2G and their families assisting with other needs, just not for app assistance at this time. Easter Seals Contact Page  

Tuesday Treasure # 36 Allison Keller iPad Program

The Allison Keller iPad Program is restricted to schools and organizations in New England, New York & New Jersey at this time.

 

Realizing the gains that many children with autism have achieved using the iPad, The Allison Keller iPad Program was created in honor of Flutie Foundation's Board member Kevin Lane Keller's daughter Allison to help fill the financial and technological gap for schools and organizations that assist individuals with autism.  Through this program, the Flutie Foundation will grant a limited number of iPads to schools and organizations for programs specifically serving individuals with autism that have an established technology program in place utilizing the iPad, or have expressed an interest in starting a program using the iPad.  Check out www.flutiefoundation.org

 

Other helpful organizations for assistance with getting iPads....

http://www.fundsnetservices.com/

Tuesday Treasure #35 BenefitsCheckUp

BenefitsCheckUP

BenefitsCheckUp is free service of the National Council on Aging (NCOA), a nonprofit service and advocacy organization in Washington, DC.

Many adults over 55 need help paying for prescription drugs, health care, utilities, and other basic needs. There are over 2,000 federal, state and private benefits programs available to help. But many people don’t know these programs exist or how they can apply.

BenefitsCheckUp asks a series of questions to help identify benefits that could save you money and cover the costs of everyday expenses.

After answering the questions, you will get a report created just for you that describes the programs you may get help from. You can apply for many of the programs online or you can print an application form.

Here are the types of expenses you may get help with:

  • Medications
  • Food
  • Utilities
  • Legal
  • Health care
  • Housing
  • In-home services
  • Taxes
  • Transportation
  • Employment Training

Another great search engine.....

National Center for Benefits Outreach & Enrollment

They help organizations enroll seniors and younger adults with disabilities with limited means into the benefits programs for which they are eligible so that they can remain healthy and improve the quality of their lives.

Tuesday Treasure #34 is Blooming with Autism

Blooming with Autism

Blooming with Autism provides families internationally the opportunity to apply and be given a $2,000 grant each year. Families must make less than $60,000 a year, have a child with a written diagnosis of autism and be willing to release their name for public use.

 

The grant can be used to fund alternative therapies that children may not receive in school, including equine therapy, chiropractics, applied behavior analysis, speech and the treatment of allergies.

 

When asked if an iPad would be funded, the reply was with proper documentation showing that this would be an appropriate device and that APPs being used on the device would help the child become more proficient and helpful in main streaming they MOST DEFINITELY WOULD!!! So a great resource for therapy and iPads!!

Check out their founder's radio show on www.W4WN.com every Mon-Fri at 4:00pm EST. Their website to apply at is www.bloomingwithautism.com

Tuesday Treasure #33 Maggie Welby Foundation

 

MWF

Maggie Welby was a loving, beautiful 7 year old girl, who was taken very suddenly from her family and friends on March 24, 2005. Maggie was the ultimate “Big Sister” to Cati Beth, then 2 years old, and to her then unborn baby brother. Kelly James was born 4 weeks after Maggie’s sudden death.

Maggie was a young girl full of life, and filled with dreams. She loved playing soccer and softball, as
well as cheerleading and playing. She sang country music everyday; and danced in the living room, her bedroom, the shower, and even the car. Wise beyond her years Maggie had a knack for always seeing a need in someone, and then proceeding to fill that need. In November of 2004, Maggie donated 11” of her beautiful blond hair to Locks of Love to help kids with cancer have hair pieces; something she had waited over 2 years to be able to do.

When Maggie Welby was in a room, it was instantly filled with love and laughter. She loved everyone she ever met, and never passed judgment on anyone. At 7 years old, she taught everyone the greatest lesson in life...how to love. She died suddenly on March 24, 2005 after being rushed to Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital of a Brainstem Subependymoma.
It is stories like this that have started so many amazing organizations that assist us on our journey. Non profit organizations have staff and volunteers that typically have been touched by a particular disability, condition or tragedy. That is why most give their time in assisting with the organization's mission. Know that these organizations came about usually because they want to help YOU on your journey. They are people just like you. Not a business out to make a buck. Keeping that in your mind might make you feel alittle better in asking for help.
The Maggie Welby Foundation offers grants for children and families that have a financial need for a particular purpose.  Grants may extend to children and families in need of help with bills, athletic opportunities, medical needs, or an opportunity that a child would not otherwise have.  All grants are awarded to the family, but are paid directly to the specific purpose for which the grant was applied.
The Maggie Welby Foundation also offers scholarships for children grades Kindergarten through twelve grade. Next award meeting is in December and deadline is December 15, 2012!!! Check out their webiste www.maggiewelby.org
 

Tuesday Treasure #32 Van Modification Organizations

To give you a heads up these are what most organizations require when applying.

Proof of household annual income

Copy of most recent two pay stubs,

Copy of most recent year tax return,

Copy of the past two months bank statement(s)

Copy of all other income sources, if applicable

 

 

Written quotation/estimate from at least TWO vendors (including labor and related costs)

Proof of denial or partial payment by other sources (Medicaid, Medicare, insurances, etc.)

Prescription or Letter of Medical Necessity from physician or OT

 

For Accessible Vehicle Modification:

Items listed above, plus

 

 

Vendor provided statement of soundness of vehicle and cost effectiveness of proposed modifications

Proof of insurance that will cover the lift or other modification parts if vehicle involved in accident and require replacementMDFF

 

State specific---INDIANA

www.mdff.org Muscular Dystrophy Family Foundation

Tuesday Treasure #31 Wheelchair Assistance

The vision of most of these organizations is that everyone should be able to participate in society and not be limited by mobility needs due to disability or lack of physical ability.

 

Wheelchairs      Scooters        Vans

 

 

 

The one suggestion I can offer is that you follow all specific instructions and guidelines when applying. ALL need from you:

  1. A completed application for service
  2. Proof of medical need
  3. Proof of financial need
  4. Denial letter from insurance
  5. Seating evaluation

So check out the following organizations.....

Alternatives in Motion

 

 

Tuesday Treasure # 30 Little Bear Gives

The focus of Little Bear Gives will be to provide CVI (Cortical visual impairment)iPad packages to families in need who have children with CVI(Cortical visual impairment). A family at any income level may be considered for this project. The term “family in need” applies to any family who may not be able to afford an iPad for a variety of reasons. They know that many children with CVI (Cortical visual impairment) have complex medical or other needs that can be very expensive, making it difficult to find the money to invest in an iPad. They believe the iPad can be an amazingly powerful tool in the life of a child with CVI. iPads are uniquely suited to the needs of those with CVI because they are backlit, easy to interact with, and there is a huge variety of apps available to suit the particular needs and preferences of each child.

 Little Bear Sees

For these reasons, Little Bear Sees is excited to announce that they are giving away their first iPad through their Little Bear Gives project! The iPad package will included.

 

All applications for the first round must be submitted by 8/30/12 to be considered. The first recipient will be chosen by 9/15/12. This is only their first iPad package giveaway. Qualified applications not chosen will be kept on file and considered for future giveaways.

If you would like to be considered for an iPad, please fill out the online Little Bear Gives Application or download the PDF of the application. Anyone who has a child with CVI is welcome to apply!

Tuesday Treasure #29 is Danielle's Foundation

Danielle's Foundation

Danielle's Foundation is a national non-profit organization that is dedicated to uniting, educating and empowering parents of children with cerebral palsy and brain injury.
 
Danielle's Foundation is committed to helping parents of children with cerebral palsy and brain injury gain the knowledge to secure the therapies, benefits and resources their children need.
Danielle's Foundation was created in 2009 by Florence Ogbuehi to honor the memory of her daughter Danielle who passed away in 2008 — at just four years old — due to complications of an anoxic brain injury. From her own experience, Florence knew how difficult it was to find help and support. She teamed up with a friend and created a community that could help other families locate and secure the resources and care their children so desperately need.
Danielle's Foundation offers the following resources to families:
• Quarterly Grant Program next deadline is Septmeber 30th!
• Free Information Guides and Special Reports
• Free Guide to National Resources
• Free MUMS Membership
• Quarterly e-Newsletter
• Online Support Group
At this time, Danielle's Foundation only provides services to families who live within the United States. Check them out at www.daniellesfoundation.org or call 800-511-2283

Tuesday Treasure #27 is MyGOAL Autism

MyGOAL Autism exists to Support Families Facing Autism. They do this through education, marriage counseling, and advocacy as they navigate through the complex challenges associated with the journey of autism from diagnoses to recovery or a better quality of life.

Tuesday Treasure #26 is Reach for the APPs

A new non-profit organization called Reach for the APPS launched recently. Their aim is to partner with individuals and corporations to increase access to iPads in schools across the country for use with students on the autism spectrum. The organization was founded by Nancy and Marc Reisner, the parents of a child with autism whose language and communicative skills have improved from using the iPad. Schools and parents can fill out a grant request form on their site requesting iPads for their children and students to use. Individuals and corporations can contribute with either a cash donation or by sending in an old iPad. The iTaalk Autism Foundation only grants iOS devices to individuals, but we get asked often about who else helps organizations get these devices. Well here is one resource for school districts to look into.

Tuesday Treasure #25 Service Dogs!!!

Over the past two months I have had a couple families ask me about these wonderful programs. After much research I have found a couple organizations that assist with the cost, training and making sure it is an appropriate choice for families.

Paws with a Causewww.pawswithacause.orgWags 4 kids

Paws with a Cause was at the top of my Google search. Some of the questions that they highlight on their website are

 

Who is eligible to apply for a PAWS dog?
People with a physical disability, hearing impairment, seizure disorder, or a child with autism who can demonstrate that an Assistance Dog will enhance their independence or their quality of life are qualified to apply.

PAWS can only accept a limited number of applications per year. Although many individuals with disabilities are eligible and in need of an assistance dog, PAWS will determine and select those individuals where the tasks provided by PAWS's highly trained dogs will be of the greatest benefit.

What are the age requirements to apply?
Individuals applying for a Service or Seizure Dog must be at least 14 years old with an established, stable home life. Individuals applying for a Hearing Dog must be at least 18 years old with an established, stable home life.  Families applying for a Service Dog for a Child with Autism must have their child enrolled in ongoing education and supplemental therapy programs, and the child must be between 4-10 years of age.  Children must be at least 8 years old to be considered for a Social Support Dog.

 

 

How much does it cost?
The sponsorship of a PAWS Assistance Dog is $30,000.  However, the dog is provided at no cost to the Client.

 

How long is the application process?
The application process from start through completion of the in-home interview may take 12-24 months.  If accepted at the end of the process, the client will go onto the waiting list for funding; it may take up to three years for PAWS to secure funding for your Assistance Dog. PAWS clients are encouraged to participate in fundraising efforts on their own behalf, under the guidance of a PAWS Development Relations Officer.  Once funding is secured, the search to find an appropriate dog will begin.  Depending on the individual needs of the client, it may take many months to find an appropriate dog.
 

Some other organizations to check as well are...

www.4pawsforability.org

                                    www.arfkids.com      www.cci.org

                                              www.northstardogs.com

                                                                      www.servicedogworld.com

www.wags4kids.org                 www.assistancedogsinternational.org

Tuesday Treasure # 24 is The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project

 

Since 2001, The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project has provided support and services to parents with physically disabled children all across the nation, regardless of their underlying disease or disorder.  "It has been our goal to provide parents of children with special health care needs with the 'tools' they need to easily and safely care for their child in the family home", said Kristen Malfara, Founder and Executive Director of The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project.  "Tools that are not considered medically necessary by insurance but that make their job as caregiver easier, thereby enhancing the quality of life for their child and their entire family."  In addition to providing gently used pediatric disability equipment, new specialized bath chairs and assisting parents in attending medical support group conferences, in early 2012 they opened the doors to Morgan's Place - located at 411 Ocean Avenue in Melbourne Beach, Florida!!!

With all the many support group/educational conferences going on this particular grant caught my eye. The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project's 2012 Small Grant Application Period is open from May 20, 2012 to June 30, 2012. There are two grants open currently: Personal Care for adaptive bath/shower chairs and Support Group Travel. This category will include up to $500 to off-set the travel expenses of a first-time attendance at a disease-specific family support group/medical conference that includes the entire family. Eligible expenses include airfare, hotel, gas, conference fees, etc. 

 

Somethings to keep in mind.....

1. If your child has a diagnosis that qualifies him/her for funding assistance from another organization, you MUST provide proof that you have applied to them and been denied before you will be considered for funding through their programs.  

2.The M.O.R.G.A.N. Project, Inc  is a non-profit organization providing small grants to the parents of chronically-ill children with life-long physical disabilities.

   

3.There is a maximum of $500 in services per recipient.     

 

Grant guidelines at http://www.themorganproject.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/2012-Small-Grants-Application-Package1.pdf 

 

 themorganproject

Tuesday Treasure #23 is Danny's Wish!

iPads! iPads!! iPads!!! So here is a wonderful charity that is helping families with children that have autism in so many ways. They have a blog at http://www.letschatautism.com/

Danny's wish blog

They are raising funds to grant 100 iPads to children that are affected by autism and need the device. Apply for their iPad's for Autism grant...

http://www.letschatautism.com/ipads-for-autism-application/

 

They have set up the process of charitable giving. Danny's father, Dino Sgueglia, used his expertise from running a credit-card processing company to set up a program called Hope Process that enables merchants to make charitable donations via credit-card transactions.Hope Process

Merchants who take credit-card payments typically pay fees on every card transaction. But Hope Process doesn’t keep those transaction fees like regular processing companies. Instead, the program collects the payments and mails out a check to a charity of the merchant’s choice on a quarterly basis. So many great resources in one place. Check out www.dannyswish.org and find out more about them all.

 

 

Tuesday Treasure #22--Help with air travel

Thought I would pass on some of these wonderful resources for families that will be doing some air travel over the summer.
 
 
This is the OFFICIAL word on what is allowed through security. Notice lots of things exempt for families traveling with children that have special healthcare needs.
http://www.tsa.gov/travelers/airtravel/specialneeds/index.shtm
 
Some tips for once on the aircraft.
http://video.about.com/travelwithkids/Avoid-Meltdowns-on-Airplanes.htm
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MgpzUo_kbFY This is Delta Airline's actual safety video. With most families looking for non stop flights remember to consider all airports within a two hour radius of your home. (Detroit, Cleveland, Columbus and maybe even driving to Chicago to get a non stop flight would be what I would recommend for my Toledo families.) 
 
And of course here is an APP for what to expect when going on an airplane.
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/off-we-go-going-on-a-plane/id388916935?mt=8#
 
Realistic sounds of airplane taking off and landing.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Mqwv5Lb6Lw
 
As a flight attendant with 22 years experience, I am required by the FAA to ADVISE passengers to fasten their seatbelts when the Captain has the seatbelt sign illuminated. That being said, I can NOT physically make you put your (or your child's) seatbelt on. Arguing with a flight attendant about safety procedures is pointless and could just escalate the situation and involve additional authorities. (Not necessary). I would suggest saying you understand and that you will take care of it. Keeping your child seated and safe is obviously something parents care about as well. Finding a way to do that calmly and without causing a MAJOR incident is what we all want. I would be more than happy to talk to any families that would like other suggestions for traveling with their child this summer.

 

Now for some grants that could possibly help with the cost of airtravel. Most are to assist with medical related necessity.


http://www.aircareall.org/ This looks like an amazing search engine for air travel specifically.


 
http://aircharitynetwork.org/ 

 

http://www.angelflightsoars.org

 

http://mercymedical.org/


 
http://www.patienttravel.org/

Air travel

Tuesday Treasure # 21 is Celebrities Against Autism

Celebrities Against Autism

I saw a news story of this mom that was selling 1 MILLION paper puzzle pieces to build the "World's Largest Puzzle". Funds raised will help families with autism therapies. $1 can make a difference.

Well that mom was Val McFarland. CAA was founded by two Michigan moms who have loved ones affected by this devastating neurological disorder. Their mission is to promote autism awareness and generate much-needed revenue to assist as many families as possible.

Not alot of guidelines but from their Facebook page and website it looks like they help fund a wide range of therapies for MICHIGAN families. So if you live in Michigan check them out at www.celebritiesagainstautism.org

Tuesday Treasure # 20 www.dcrf.com

 

Disabled Children’s Relief Fund

 

Disabled Children's Relief Fund (DCRF), a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization,  provides disabled children with assistance to obtain wheelchairs, orthopedic braces, walkers, lifts, hearing aids, eyeglasses, medical equipment, physical therapy, and surgery. Blind, Deaf, Amputees, and children with Cerebral Palsy, Muscular Dystrophy, Spastic Quadriplegia, Encephalitis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Spina Bifida, Down's Syndrome, and other disabilities receive assistance. DCRF focuses special attention on helping children throughout the U.S. that do not have adequate health insurance, especially the physically challenged. In some cases, DCRF may be the last resort.

DCRF grant applications may be used for modest requests (most range between $25 to $200) for assistive devices, rehabilitative services, arts/humanities projects, or for efforts to bolster compliance with existing federal/state laws for disabled children, ages 0-18. Although there are no restrictions on the type or eligible disabilities,

 

 

 

preference is given to applications that benefit physically challenged children in the  United States in need of prosthetic and other assistive devices. (not computers or iPads) Disabled Children's Relief FundApplications may be submitted by families (parent or guardian) for an individual child, or by a non-profit organization for a small group of children.

DCRF provides assistance to children with disabilities in the United States. Assistance is provided to families of children with disabilities, with preference for children with physical disabilities and little or no health insurance.

Applications are available between April and September.

You will find the current 2012 Application at www.dcrf.com under  the "What's New" page. Download an application which includes more information, details, and instructions.

Tuesday Treasure #19 (Brief Explaination)

I feel over the past nineteen weeks I have really went out of my way to list organizations that assist a wide range of families. We realize that all diagnosis, all financial needs, and all states (even other countries) come to iTaalk for funding resources. What I think maybe hasn't been made clear is the MAJOR difference between a legitimate NON-PROFIT that is registered with the IRS under the tax exempt code 501(c)3 and an organization having a raffle or giveaway. So I feel I need to shed some light on this matter before proceeding with my Tuesday Treasure.

 

Grants are monetary aide not required to be paid back. When setting up our non profit we had to decide what guidelines we would have in place to determine eligibility of recipients receiving an iOS device from iTaalk. The criteria a potential non profit puts in place for their grant is written in their by-laws and can be audited at anytime by federal, state and local government agencies. Transparency is something we at iTaalk pride ourselves on. 

 

*Geographical restrictions

*Household Income restrictions

*Diagnosis/Provider restrictions

*Services/Therapies eligible

*Age/race/gender restrictions 

*Maximum amount funded

*Grants for organizations or to individuals

 

All these things are criteria options that each and every non profit funding organization sets up when applying for their non profit status with the IRS. Showing that they are not just giving to friends and family is definitely something the government looks at before approving tax exempt status. Being a legitimate non profit with 501(c)3 status holds us accountable for each and every dollar that we bring in. Businesses and organizations that have raffles and giveaways are not.  

 

CALIFORNIA

 

  • http://pause4kids.org  must be served by the Ventura County SELPA
  •  

    Florida

     

    GEORGIA

     

  • www.kiddosclubhousefoundation.org  
  •  

    MICHIGAN

     

  • www.friendsofjacob.org       
  •  

    OHIO

     

  • www.bb4k.org  Building Blocks for Kids requires that you live in the greater Cincinnati area.
  • www.specialkidstherapy.org     
  • www.zanesfoundation.org  must live in Northeast Ohio     
  •  

    INDIANA, NEW YORK & RHODE ISLAND

     

  • www.hannahandfriends.org       
  •  

    Treasure #18 is Children's Charity Fund

    Grant Application for Medical Equipment or Educational Grants

    Children's Charity Fund, Inc. will assist any child regardless of age, (birth to 18 ) race, color, sex or national origin. They are a national organization dedicated to home bound disabled and handicapped children. Application can be found on line at www.childrenscharityfund.org and if you have any questions feel free to contact 1-800-643-5787.

    Treasure # 17 is The Color of Autism Foundation

    Treasure #14--The Canyon Rice Hope Scholarship

    The Canyon Rice Hope Scholarship offers grants, to children with developmental disabilities (until the age of 22), items not covered by insurance or waivers. There are two main types of grants currently available: grants for caregiver supports (respite) and grants for therapeutic items (bean bags, body socks, weighted vests, etc). If you wish to apply for a grant or would like more information, please contact Jenny Rice @ JENNY_L_RICE@YAHOO.COM

    Treasure #13 is Think Alive!

    Think Alivewww.ThinkAlive.org 

    “Thinking Alive” :1. better your life by exploring your passions and taking risks

     

    Think Alive’s flagship program, The Achievement Grant, provides grants ranging from $150 to $500 in value. These grants are specifically designed to finance lessons, equipment, travel expenses, and other similar expenditures associated with an applicant specific goal and passion. Previously supported activities include piano lessons, archery equipment, a recreational biking “Starter Kit”, horseback riding lessons and more. However, if it involves an expense and a dream, there is a good chance Think Alive will support it.

     

    Every individual is at a different stage of development and has different goals. For this reason, Think Alive’s Achievement Grants only have two requirements: a diagnosed disability and a dream. No dream is too large or too small to be supported. Personal growth and advance on any scale is their main objective.

     

    For more information visit www.ThinkAlive.org or call/email Tim Enfield directly at  info@thinkalive.org or 505-470-3296.

    Treasure # 12 is Partnership for Prescription Assistance

    pparxCheck out www.pparx.org


    The Partnership for Prescription Assistance offers a single point of access to more than 475 public and private patient assistance programs, including more than 200 programs offered by pharmaceutical companies.
    Mission
    The Partnership for Prescription Assistance brings together America’s pharmaceutical companies, doctors, other health care providers, patient advocacy organizations and community groups to help qualifying patients who lack prescription coverage get the medicines they need through the public or private program that’s right for them. Many will get medicine for free or nearly free. We are trying to increase awareness of patient assistance programs and boost enrollment of those who are eligible.
    Products
    To access the Partnership for Prescription Assistance, you can call toll-free, 1-888-4PPA-NOW (1-888-477-2669), or visit us online at http://www.pparx.org/.

    Treasure #11 is New Eyes for the Needy!

    New Eyes for the Needy purchases new prescription eyeglasses through a voucher program for children and adults in the United States who cannot afford glasses on their own. New Eyes accepts, recycles and distributes donated glasses for people in dire financial need overseas. 

    How does New Eyes help these children and adults?

    • U.S. residents in need are given vouchers which are used to purchase new prescription eyeglasses.
    • Reusable donated eyeglasses are sent to medical missions and international charitable organizations for distribution in developing nations in Asia, Africa, Central and South America, the Mid-East and Europe.
    The following national programs may provide free or low-cost eye exams:

    Lions Clubs

    provide financial assistance for eye care to individuals through local clubs. Services vary from club to club.

    OneSight Program

    may provide free eye care to individuals based on a referral from a local charitable agency such as the American Red Cross, United Way, Boys Club and YMCA.

    Sight for Students

    (            1-888-290-4964      ) operates nationally through a network of community partners to provide free eye care to low-income, insured children 18 years of age and younger.

    Vision USA

    is sponsored by the American Optometric Association (AOA) and provides free vision care to low-income people and their families that meet specific criteria.

    Treasure #10 is Maggies Hope

    The Mission Statement “Maggie’s Hope is a not for profit organization founded to restore hope, fund solutions and support families affected by autism”.

     

    How do they support those families affected by autism? They give them money to help pay for alternative treatments not covered by insurance. Now I am not going to even attempt to list the treatments that Insurance Companies, Doctors, co-workers, friends and family deem “alternative”. When you say alternative, they hear “desperate, crazy and unproven”. Who cares? Those of us who know they work will swear by them. Trouble is, they are expensive, and since they do not come in a burnt orange bottle with a white lid, they are not only omitted from most insurance plans, they are downright ridiculed.

     

    Maggie’s Hope offers two tier levels of grants. The first tier is $500.00. This grant is designed to be utilized as a seed fund and is not intended to be an ongoing financial resource. By providing this start-up money Maggie’s Hope wishes to help provide a head start in an area not currently funded. I also see potentially that $500.00 that now is helping with Hippotherapy costs can be applied to purchasing an IPAD. Shifting the funds around.

     

    Their second tier and newest initiative is the $10,000.00 annual grant designed to take a candidate from D Day (Diagnosis Day) through one year of treatment. The mission is to show measureable benchmarks that corporations can understand and hopefully get behind. Noah Roberts is their first recipient so make sure to check back with their website tophoto of Maggie see his progress. www.maggieshope.org

     

    Treasure # 9 is Wish Upon a Hero!!!!

    I realize this is later than usual but I assure you, well worth the wait.

    Let's start with this amazing organization's motto:

    Wish Upon a Hero Everyone has a wish. 

    Anyone can be a hero.

    www.wishuponahero.com

    The whole pay it forward philosophy is taken to the internet here. Combined it with the passion to help and you have an amazing network. Not only can you get your wish granted here, you too can become a hero. It could be as small of a request as a pair of socks, to a trip to Hawaii. No special need required either!


    Just when you thought it couldn't get any better; we have put together a list of over 40 other Wishing Granting Organizations. YES, 40 other funding sources!!!! Check them out and hopefully one can help your family.

    Click here for the Wish Granting Organization List

     

    Treasure #8 is The Bellows Fund

    I am always getting asked how I keep finding grants and other resources for children with special healthcare needs. GRANTED it is a little luck:) Being in the right place at the right time, taking the time to read bulletin boards everywhere, and thoroughly checking out the many great websites that are setup to assist families on their journey. So here are a couple of my favorites.

    1. http://www.autismspeaks.org/family-services
    2. http://www.cincinnatichildrens.org/patients/child/special-needs/directory/default/
    3. http://www.mommiesofmiracles.com/Resources/resource_list.php 
    4. http://www.themorganproject.org/get-help/resources/
    5. http://www.oneplaceforspecialneeds.com
    6. http://www.tacanow.org/tag/resources/

     

    Another great resource is the United Cerebral Palsy. www.ucp.org That is how I came upon the Bellows Fund. The UCP Elsie S. Bellows Fund is a national program operated by UCP that provides funds to ALL individuals with disabilities for assistive technology equipment. Individuals are recommended by UCP affiliates. UCP affiliates submit an application on behalf of an individual to the UCP national office. So first thing you need to do is find your local affiliate. http://www.ucp.org/resources/find-local-resources


    Some Examples of Allowable Requests for Assistive Technology

    • Wheelchairs (manual and electric)
    • Augmentative Communication Devices  ***iPad*** included
    • Environmental Controls
    • Computer Equipment
    • Lifts in the nominee's own/parent's van or home
    • Hearing Aids

    If you have questions, a helpful resource is Jack Schillinger and he can be reached at (305)757-8989 or jschill497@aol.comUCP

    Lucky # 7 is for those families not so lucky lately. Check out www.AutismCares.org

    Over the past few months I have had so many families contact me sharing their story of how recently their financial security has changed drastically. AutismCares is a consortium of leading autism organizations and was formed in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina to coordinate relief efforts for the thousands of families who were victims of the disaster.  AutismCares subsequently assisted families displaced by Hurricanes Rita and Wilma and now supports all families affected by autism who fall victim to natural disasters. Children with autism often require intensive biomedical and behavioral therapies and thoroughly planned routines. AutismCares has created a network to support families whose struggle with autism is intensified by natural disaster, forced relocation and scarce resources.AC logo 
    Financial Support Awards provide financial relief up to $1,000 for individuals with ASD and their families to help cover costs associated with critical living expenses such as housing, utilities, car repair, funeral expenses, and other essential items on a case-by-case basis.
    • Applications are reviewed by the Partners following the 22nd of every month. 
    • Eligible families have a child (children) medically diagnosed with ASD
    • Family income of $40,000 or less
    • Have experienced at least one of the following qualifying event in the last 90 days:
      - Natural disaster: fire, flood, hurricane, tornado, severe storm or earthquake
      - Death or critical illness in the immediate family
      - Loss of home through foreclosure, eviction or natural disaster
      - Termination of employment for the primary income-earner

    Any questions contact AutismCares via Serena Selkin, Autism Speaks Family Services Grants Manager at (917) 475-5059 or e-mail autismcares@autismspeaks.org.

     

    Peter Bell, CEO of Cure Autism Now, explained, “AutismCares was born out of the compassion that members of the autism community have for one another.  Many of us know firsthand how challenging it is to care for a child with autism.  Add on top of that a natural disaster like Katrina that strips a family of everything they have, and it’s a recipe for yet another disaster.”

     

    Treasure #6 is Joni and Friends!!!!

    What drew me to Joni and Friends was their grant that they administer called the Christian Fund for the Disabled. CFD provides one-time grants to qualifying individuals in the United States and Internationally in cooperation with mission organizations or churches that are willing to provide matching funds. CFD is administered through their Area Ministries in the U.S. -- Area Ministry staff provide CFD applications which are assessed and then sent to the CFD committee for final review. Requests must reflect a practical equipment or educational need relating to a disability concern, or a disability outreach project or program which includes an evangelism component. Grants are also available to churches desiring to become accessible. For Guidelines and application contact:

    Karen Johnson, CFD Coordinator

    Joni and Friends

    P.O. Box 3333

    Agoura Hills, CA 91376

    E-mail: kjohnson@joniandfriends.org

    Phone: (818) 707-5664; Fax: (818) 575-1798

     

    Now a friend of mine is fond of Joni and Friends for another reason and here is her story. (Kind of like a guest blogger! Thanks Kate!)

    We went to a weekend family camp in August of 2010. It was at this camp that we found out about Joni and Friends. We became aware that they offered a weeklong camp at different locations throughout the United States and abroad. I called them first thing the following Monday. We talked about what Joni and Friends was all about and what their mission was. I asked about the family camp I had heard so much about the previous weekend. The camp started the next week, so I figured it would be full for this session and was asking about the next camp. Imagine my surprise when I received a phone call two days later asking if we could attend the session just a few days away. There was a family that had a full scholarship but was unable to attend. Our family was able to slide into that slot.

    My husband was unable to secure the time off of work in such a short notice.  I took both of my kiddos and drove 5 hours to get to camp. I was very thankful that the drive went so very well. When we got to camp it was like a pep rally waiting for us. There were people with banners, pompoms and welcome signs everywhere! Instantly it felt like we were going to have some fun.

    We got settled into our room and met our short term missionaries (STM).  We had a STM for each of the kids and it was great to have extra support so there were less worries. There was a connection with the other parents who understood my worries and concerns.  It was another Mom who had been to Family Camp before that reassured me that my kids would be fine. I was worried as my son likes to run and has no regard for his personal safety. After explaining all of this to his STM, I started to relax.

    The camp itself is in Jumonville, PA. It was in the mountains with lots of little hills to climb to go back and forth to each building. It was fun to explore the camp and the grounds. There were activities planned for every hour, including a down time for a couple of hours each day. The kids had separate activities planned, so although we were separated, the kids had so much fun. The STM’s let each child choose what they wanted to do. My son is obsessed with picking dandelions and his STM spent hours in the field picking “flowers” with him.

    At one of the breakout sessions, there was pampering for the women. This included manicures and foot reflexology. The entire time was about recharging my own energies. The STM’s even ate meals with our family and helped the kids while I ate.  The last dinner was a picnic dinner for couples and a served meal for those without a partner with them.  Members from a local church served as wait staff and decorated the tablescape in a Tropical theme.

    The week was an amazing experience and simply a chance to relax and recharge. It would not have been possible for our family to attend without the funding provided to us through Joni and Friends.

     

     After hearing Kate's story I researched and found that Joni and Friends reaches thousands of families affected by disability around the globe through radio and television ministries, the Wheels for the World international wheelchair distribution ministry, Family Retreats to provide respite for those with disabilities and their families, Field Services to provide church training along with educational and inspirational resources at a local level, the Christian Institute on Disability (CID) to establish a firm biblical worldview on disability-related issues, and the Christian Fund for the Disabled. Many wonderful resources for families with children that have special healthcare needs! Check them out. www.joniandfriends.org

     

     

     

    Treasure #5 is ------Small Steps in Speech!!!!

    Small Steps in Speech is such an amazing organization I don't even know where to start. The story of how this organization was started truly shows where their heart and motivation is.

     

    The motivation behind Small Steps in Speech is to remember Staff Sgt. Marc J. Small. Marc was a Special Forces Operational Detachment-Alpha team medical sergeant assigned to Company A, 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne) in the United States Army. On February 12, 2009 Marc was was killed while serving his country in Afghanistan.

     

    The foundation was created in honor of SSG Marc Small, fiancé of Amanda Charney, foundation director. Marc had dreams of Amanda opening her own private practice and came up with the name, "Small Steps in Speech" to symbolize her soon to be last name along with the small steps children must take to build their communication skills. When the heart breaking news came of Marc's passing, starting this non-profit foundation seemed like a good way to start keeping Marc Small's memory alive and keep him close to her heart.

     

    Marc's mom, Mary MacFarland, is President of SSIS and oversees the financial and administrative matters of the foundation. SSIS's goal is to give children the chance to better express themselves in the world in which we live. Much like Marc was doing in Afghanistan before he died.

     

    Applications are reviewed and grants are awarded on a quarterly basis. Grants are considered for children and/or organizations that need funding to improve communication skills. Grants are not limited to private therapy. If there are communication needs such as devices/equipment, workshops, organizational needs, or therapy please apply. If applying for a grant to be used toward an assistive technology device, an assistive technology evaluation from a qualified service provider must be included. Funding for AT devices will only be considered if the device is recommended by such a provider and to be used solely for the purpose of communication. So here is an organization that will fund an iPad for communication.

     

    Follow the guidelines and hopefully your child will get the chance to be heard!

    www.smallstepsinspeech.org

     

     

    SSIS

    Treasure #4---Variety the Children's Charity

    Variety the Children's Charity is dedicated to promoting and protecting the health and well-being of children around the world. Through a network of 43 Tents (or Chapters) in 13 countries, Variety reaches into communities across the globe to offer financial assistance and services to children and organizations that serve children with special needs.

    Through hard work, thoughtful stewardship, and single-minded focus on the needs of the young, Variety strives to make a lasting difference in the lives of children, their families, our communities, and the world...one need at a time.

    Variety logo www.varietychildrenscharity.org

    Find your local chapter and check in with them and see what programs and services they offer. Variety the Children's Charity is dedicated to improving the lives of children around the world. Ex.

     

    1.Variety Australia- www.variety.org.au has helped thousands of children each year gain mobility and communication and thereby, their freedom, independence and the chance to join in with other kids in the community.

     

    2.Variety Club of Great Britain- www.varietyclub.org.uk has three broad areas of help. Mobility. Caring & Health. Youth & Education.

     

    3.Variety of the United States- www.usvariety.org Kids on the Go is their national mission but their 23 chapters through out the country empower their local kids who are disabled and disadvantaged to live, laugh, and learn.

    Check with your local chapter!

     

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