FINANCIAL AIDS FOR PARENTS OF CHILDREN WITH AUTISM
There are many aspects of receiving a diagnosis of autism for your child that can feel overwhelming. One of them is how much treatment can cost. Early intervention, therapy, and equipment aren’t cheap. But there are tons of grants for children with autism that can help ease the financial burden and streamline your focus towards helping your child develop and grow.
Grants for parents with an autistic child are helpful, but they’ll go much further if you start planning for the costs associated with autism treatment as early as possible.
A child with autism may need financial assistance throughout their life. Make sure to start putting money away for it. While there are grants for children with autism (as well as adults) that can help here, you need to be aware that your money no longer needs to last as long as you do — it needs to last as long as they do.
If you need to pay for regular therapy, private schools, or homeschooling for kids with special needs, save for that as well. But you can also prepare to submit applications for autism grants for families because a huge number of them are geared towards helping with those specific costs.
Finally, plan for the financial fallout if anything happens to you. Be sure that your child or their care is included in your will. Set up protocols for who has guardianship or power of attorney, and what that individual has access to. Make sure that their education and anything else they might need is provided for.
Also, draw up a letter of intent — it’s a roadmap that outlines your intentions, financial details, and more. It could be helpful for the person caring for your child after you when applying for grants for children with autism.
Autism Speaks is primarily focused on autism information and education, but they do also offer some autism grants for families in need due to a catastrophic life event or natural disaster.
Autism Care Today provides grants for therapies, supplements, assistive technologies, and more on a quarterly basis. They also have specific grants for children with autism in military families, and emergency grants for children who could be in immediate danger without professional intervention.
The Cerner Charitable Foundation offers grants for parents with an autistic child to pay for therapies and assistive technologies that are not covered by any insurance.
The Variety Club focuses on multiple unmet needs for children who are sick, disadvantaged, live with disabilities, or have special needs. They have autism grants for families consisting of equipment and services for mobility, inclusion, and communication.
Fund It Forward will help anyone with a diagnosed medical condition or disability get the equipment they need, with the understanding that the grantee will then help them fundraise for the next person in need.
The Different Needz Foundation gives annual grants for children with autism or other developmental disabilities so they can get physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and more.
The United Healthcare Children’s Foundation awards grants for parents with an autistic child if they earn less than specific amounts of income (based on family size) to receive therapy from licensed medical professionals.
The Dream Factory is the largest all-volunteer-driven wish-granting organization in the United States that isn’t limited to children with terminal illnesses. They grant “dreams” for children with autism or other chronic illnesses or disorders near any of their chapters.
The Sunshine Foundation grants “dreams” of all kinds to children who are seriously ill, chronically ill, physically challenged or abused in the United States. Dreams can vary from vacations to Disneyland to grants to purchase adaptive or sensory equipment that insurance doesn’t cover.
Location Specific Grants
Bright Steps Forward provides autism grants for families in Miami-Dade, Broward, and Palm Beach counties in Florida. They help children with neurological or developmental disorders access high-quality special needs education and therapy.
Part of the University of Illinois at Chicago, the Division of Specialized Care for Children primarily focuses on care coordination for families of children with special needs all across the state of Illinois. However, they can also provide some grants for parents with an autistic child for medical expenses based on income and family size.
Friends of Man will help people with medical and developmental needs of all kinds in Colorado, from medical, adaptive, or sensory equipment to therapy and everything in between. They also offer limited assistance for people outside Colorado.
Jack’s Place offers scholarship grants for children and adults with autism who live in Michigan. The scholarships go to community programs for arts & crafts, dance, hobbies, music, recreation, or sports.
Reagan’s Journey’s primary mission is in special events and raising awareness for children with disabilities. However, they also operate RJ’s Closet, with donated pediatric medical equipment free for pickup from their Pennsylvania location.
Rest Haven Children’s Health Fund gives grants for children with autism or other medical/developmental problems in San Diego or Imperial counties in California. These grants can be used for equipment, treatment, or anything else the child needs for proper development and mental health care.
The Wheel to Walk Foundation assists young people with grants to obtain medical or adaptive equipment and therapy that is not covered by their insurance provider in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, and California.
Zane’s, Inc. gives grants for children and adults with autism or other special needs in Northeast Ohio to help them with the costs of therapy, equipment, communicative devices, medical expenses, and more.