Improve Mobility with These Options for Financing a Van
There are enough challenges raising a child with special needs, and transportation and mobility should not add undue stress. Equipping a vehicle for wheelchair or specialty stroller access can be expensive, not to mention that the child could outgrow their current chair, and the van would either need to be re-customized, or a new one would have to be purchased.
Finding options to improve affordability can be beneficial. It should not be surprising to know that there are companies offering help. In this report, we will look at some of the options available to parents that may lessen the financial and emotional stress burden this situation can bring.
Special Kids Fund
This organization allows individuals to donate their used vans that no longer serve their needs so that they can be given to other families in need. A benefit to the donor is that they get a full tax credit for the price of their van.
The following information is required when requesting a vehicle:
- Details of the type of accessible vehicle needed
- Disability involved
- Financial need
- Phone number and address
- Whether the van is for a disabled veteran (for adults) or if a VET is asking for a disabled family member
If a vehicle is located in the individual’s area, they will have to carry car insurance, register the vehicle, and pick it up from the donor. If you have a financial need, this is an option to try. Also – please keep this organization in mind if you have a vehicle to donate.
This resource offers handicap vehicle shopping tools to help you start your mobility search. If you are just beginning your search, this is an excellent starting point. They link you to funding options based on your home state.
For wheelchair vehicle grants and financial assistance, you start by selecting your state. Local BraunAbility dealers can also offer financial aid resources.
Further down on the page is a link to manufacturers that provide automotive discounts, rebates, or assistance on mobility equipment.
This website provides links to many organizations that provide wheelchair donations and other mobility aids for greater access and mobility. The many listed organizations also accept wheelchair and equipment donations – both new and used. At the time of this printing, 18 organizations were listed.
One of the nice features about this link is that it directs readers to resources that have been provided by hundreds of members who use their forums, and covers not only ways of securing help with mobility, but also many other much-needed resources. Although this support group forum is for Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita, the resources can help anyone find avenues for help.
MV-1 dealers are an excellent resource for help with purchasing a mobility vehicle. Some people think that because the MV-1 is factory built and not converted or modified, it will not qualify for funding. The dealer can provide a letter that will break down the accessible portion of the MV-1 that satisfies the criteria for many of the grants and funding sources that are available.
This link takes you to funding sources and grants that can help you sort through the available options. The criteria for funding can vary based on the type of disability, location, income level, military status, etc… The wider range of places you can look, the better chance you have of getting the help you need.
Links are available for a number of specific medical conditions that offer grants, including United Spinal Association, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, United Cerebral Palsy, Travis Roy Foundation, and Bryon Riesch Paralysis Foundation.
There is also a link to the Center for Parent Information and resources that can provide financial assistance to children with disabilities. You can also check to see if your state has a Community Parent Resource Center (CPRC).
The International Center for Disability Resources on the Internet
Tips to Apply for a Wheelchair Van Grant lays out everything you need to know to begin this process, including:
- focusing on used accessible vans for sale to lower your costs that will better your chances of obtaining a grant
- preparing for the application process (and what information you need to gather)
- identifying potential granting institutions
- making contact with the grant providers
- how your story will set you apart
- staying organized
The more you know, the better able you will be to get the help you need, and this resource helps you get organized for the process.
The website listed above will take you directly to a page where you can click on your state for direct links to both government and non-profit organizations that offer disability assistance programs and grants.
You Can Be Your Best Resource
The truth is that, in the end, there is no better person than YOU to be a resource for getting your child the help that is needed, including the area of mobility. Do not give up at the first sign of “no.” There are still many more resources to contact. Take your time, be patient because help is out there.
You May Also Like
- Mobility for Children with Special Needs
- Why Using a Wheelchair Is the Opposite of Giving Up
- The Right Stroller Can Improve Your Mobility in the World
- 14 Stroller Hacks Parents Need to Know
- Dreams Made True: New Wonders for Walking
- Go Baby Go! Mobility & Sociability
Image courtesy Rollx Vans
This post originally appeared on our May/June 2016 Magazine