Applying for Federal Benefits
Updated: Apr 21
Another way to alleviate the financial burden on your shoulders is to take advantage of federal and state benefits available to you. They are out there, you just have to find and apply for them. Children three and under are eligible for certain state and federal benefits that make therapy more affordable, and low- to mid-income families may qualify for specific financial benefits as well if their child is 18 years or older.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
Supplemental Security Income is available to low-income families with children that meet the SSI disability standard. Families that qualify receive a monthly payment from SSI and, in some states, a supplement can be added to that amount.
Medicaid will cover a child’s health care expenses and provide in-home medical equipment and support as well as other community services. Conditions to qualify vary from state to state, but in most cases, children that qualify for SSI automatically qualify for Medicaid as well.
Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP)
The Children’s Health Insurance Program provides comprehensive coverage to eligible children under the age of 19 whose parents cannot afford private healthcare, but earn too much to qualify for Medicaid. The designated name for CHIP varies by state, and funding is a joint effort of the state and federal government.
You should also be on the lookout for non-profit grants and scholarships available to you. Below, we’ve compiled a list of the most essential federal, state, and non-profit benefits currently available.
Non-Profit Grants and Scholarships for Children with Special Needs
Action for Autism helps families obtain the resources and funds they need to raise their child.
The Arya Foundation provides financial assistance and medical equipment for families raising children with special needs.
Bryan’s Hope provides financial assistance for children with brain cancer.
The Chronic Disease Fund helps families obtain expensive prescription medications needed for children with chronic diseases.
The Different Needz Foundation offers grants to families with children who have developmental issues to purchase medical equipment and services.
First Hand Foundation offers grants and scholarships to families of children with special needs who have exhausted health insurance.
The Hike Fund provides hearing devices to children from birth to age 20 whose families cannot afford them.
The Humanitarian Foundation helps families cover the cost of dental treatment for children with special needs.
My Life Without Limits provides educational and financial resources to families of children with special needs.
National Organization for Rare Disease (NORD) offers financial assistance to families of children with rare diseases so they can afford life-sustaining medications.
The Parker Lee Project offers medical supplies and equipment for families with children with disabilities.
Seedling Braille Books for Children gives children three free braille books a year to improve literacy for visually impaired children.
Small Steps in Speech offers grants to children in need of speech therapy.
Variety The Children’s Charity provides grants to children with mobile disabilities.
Wheelchairs 4 Kids gives children access to wheelchairs and equipment to improve mobility.
For additional help, you can also check out Benefit.gov’s Benefit Finder.