When children are diagnosed with a severe disability, the entire family bears the weight of care and support. Parents struggle to figure out what the new normal will look like, and siblings have to learn how to adapt to the changes. Though there are services offered through the government and obtained through filling out a DDD application, families can still struggle with emotional burdens. It can be very overwhelming for families in these situations, but there are several organizations that offer guidance and support for individuals and families that are dealing with a developmental disability.
Mommies of Miracles
This organization aims to help mothers avoid both feelings of isolation and physically being isolated from what is considered a “normal life,” as the organization has crafted a network offering grief support, access to resources, and, more importantly, hope. This group includes moms from all over the world who have children of all different ages and conditions. Since the group is peer-driven, the expressions of empathy and concern are personal and the advice or help is practical.
Advocacy organizations work to influence public opinion and political policy with their area of interest, and the Arc has a mission to “promote and protect the human rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.” This organization offer programs that include individuals in community events and roles, vocational services, and tutoring and socialization programs. Different locations offer different services and programs, and the organization isn’t just for family members, parents, or those with special needs. There are volunteer opportunities for community members to help foster connections and develop acceptance of those who need special assistance.
Complex Child E-Magazine
This is a free, online-only magazine that is written by parents of kids with special needs. Though the resources that are offered in incredible, the site makes it easy for the user to navigate to certain topics or themes. Readers are also encouraged to submit articles or posts for reference. Through this magazine and the different references, you can connect with other parents and caregivers that understand your journey.
The Caregiver Action Network
The CAN organization is offered at no charge and connects families and caregivers all over the company with organizations and foundations that support their tasks and roles. Through the network, families can find volunteers that can provide training or education about a diagnosis or work with you on advocacy issues.
Caregivers and family members of those with special needs have challenges that can be overwhelming and exhausting. These resources do their part to help alleviate some of the physical and emotional burdens of their situation.