Funding Sources for Families of Children with Autism

This list is intended to be a working draft and we are happy to include your input or corrections. Please verify all information with the funding provider. xMinds does not provide legal or financial advice.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Contact: 1-800-772-1213; visit the website for more information
Website: https://www.ssa.gov/ssi/text-understanding-ssi.htm
Goal of Program: To supplement the income of an aged, blind, or disabled individual or couple so that they can meet a minimum standard for quality of life.
Who is Eligible: Anyone who is age 65 or older, blind, or disabled; is a US citizen or national (with a handful of exceptions); lives in one of the 50 United States, D.C., or the northern Mariana Islands; has resources with an aggregate value of less than $2000 for an individual/child or less than $3000 for a couple; meets certain other requirements.
Description: Through a complex set of rules determining which money can and cannot be counted as income or resources, SSI provides a supplement to the income of aged, blind, or disabled individuals in order to raise their level of income to meet a minimum standard for quality of life. Apply any time.

Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA)

Contact: Regional office for Montgomery County can be reached at 301-362-5100;
DDA Headquarters: 401-767-5600
Website: https://dda.health.maryland.gov/Pages/home.aspx
Goal of Program: To provide an encompassing set of behavioral, medical/health, employment, and housing support systems to help individuals with developmental disabilities live more independent lives and engage with their communities.
Who is Eligible: Individuals in Maryland with disabilities that prevent them from handling daily activities independently.
Description: The DDA provides a wide range of services to individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. Services help recipients live independent lives and engage with their communities. Services include different types of behavioral support and intervention, resources for helping an individual find and maintain employment, and nursing and health services. The DDA provides these services by offering waivers to individuals on the DDA services waitlist. These waivers include the Community Supports Waiver, Community Pathways Waiver, and Family Supports Waiver. The DDA also offers a network of free trainings and webinars to people with disabilities, their families, advocates, and support staff. Apply any time.

Low Intensity Support Services (LISS)

Contact: Maryland Community Connection administers LISS for Montgomery County residents: 301-583-8880;  LISS@marylandcommunityconnection.org
Website: https://dda.health.maryland.gov/Pages/liss.aspx; http://www.marylandcommunityconnection.org
Goal of Program: To provide financial assistance in acquiring services and items for a child or adult with a developmental disability in Maryland.
Who is Eligible: Children and adults in Maryland with developmental disabilities who are not receiving any support services from Maryland’s Developmental Disabilities Administration and who are not enrolled in a Medicare Home and Community-Based Services Waiver program.
Description: The DDA’s LISS program works to ensure that children and adults with developmental disabilities have access to short-term funding opportunities. LISS recipients receive up to $2000 for services and/or items that address their needs. Applicants enter a random selection process that allocates grants to a limited number of recipients. Apply by November 29, 2019, for LISS enrollment in fiscal year 2020.

Maryland Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services Waiver for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (Autism Waiver)

Contact: Autism Waiver Registry at 866-417-3480;
Maryland Department of Education at 410-767-1446;
Maryland Department of Health at 410-767-5220
Website: http://marylandpublicschools.org/programs/Pages/Special-Education/autismfactsheet.aspx
Goal of Program: To provide autistic youth with medical services, health insurance coverage, and habilitative services in the youth’s home and/or community.
Who is Eligible: Children from age 1 to the end of the semester in which they turn 21, who have a current diagnosis of ASD, and who meet an ICF-IID (see definition below) institutional level-of-care. The program is tailored to children with IEPs or Individualized Family Services Plans who receive at least 15 hours a week of special education and/or related services. Eligible applicants are not enrolled in another Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services Waiver. Eligible applicants must meet the income/financial requirements stated on the program's website.
Description: The Autism Waiver provides youth who would be eligible for Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF-IIDs) with services in their own homes and communities. The provided services include Medicaid health insurance coverage through Medical Assistance for the child/youth, Intensive Individual Support Services, and Intensive Therapeutic Integration services. Autism Waiver participants also receive services in coordination with their local school systems. The Autism Waiver serves 1,200 participants as of fiscal year 2019. Aspiring applicants should contact the Autism Waiver Registry to wait for a vacancy in the program.

My Turn Program

Contact: 240-777-1216;  240-777-4625 (fax)
Website: https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/HHS-Program/Program.aspx?id=ADS/ADSMyTurnPgm-p233.html
Goal of Program: To provide short-term financial assistance and information to caregivers of a child with a developmental disability; to connect the child and their caregiver to other community resources and support services.
Who is Eligible: Caregivers of Montgomery County residents ages 3 to 13 with a developmental disability.
Description: The My Turn program provides short-term financial assistance to caregivers of children with developmental disabilities, helping children obtain needed items and services such as medical equipment and behavioral consultation. The program also provides caregivers with access to other community resources. My Turn services are designed to address the child’s needs that are not met by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

Shared Horizons

Contact: 202-448-1460; events@shared-horizons.org
Website: https://www.shared-horizons.org
Goal of Program: To help an individual with a disability manage his or her money in a trust without jeopardizing the individual’s public benefits; to help an individual with a disability purchase goods and services not covered by public benefits.
Who is Eligible: For setting up a trust, anyone with a disability in D.C., Maryland, Virginia, or Georgia; for a grant from the Charitable Fund, anyone with a disability in D.C., Maryland, or Virginia with demonstrated financial need.
Description: Individuals with disabilities can use Shared Horizons as a trust management service that responsibly manages and administers money to a disabled individual without jeopardizing the individual’s access to benefits such as SSI and subsidized housing. Trusts can either be First Party (money owned by the person with the disability) or Third Party (money funded by people other than the person with the disability.) Shared Horizons also offers the Charitable Fund program. This program allocates money to people with disabilities who need financial help purchasing goods and services that are not covered by public benefits. A disabled person, a person connected to the disabled person, or a nonprofit organization can apply for a Charitable Fund grant on behalf of the disabled person.

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