Suggestions for Funding Sources
The best resources are local! Individuals like to help those within their community. You might wish to try some of the following:
- Lion Clubs International can direct you to a local lions club. Their goal is to help individuals who are visually impaired.
- Knights of Columbus Local chapters will help those with cognitive disabilities.
- Boy Scouts of America – Scouts needing to perform Eagle Scout projects must make, build or design things. They are great for making resonance boards, Velcro boards, musical instruments, etc.
Local businesses may have a matching fund or volunteer program, e.g.
- Home Depot/Lowe’s – may give you a gift card to fund a project
- Kohl’s – may provide volunteers to build a project
- Meijer – may give you a gift card to put a project together
Grants – specific to your activity, school, program etc. – look into things you can qualify for
Parents – instead of asking for pens, paper – ask for Active Learning Supplies (ping pong balls, whisks, harmonicas, whistles, etc.) Ask parents to help make resonance boards, sand or varnish purchased kits from Lilliworks to make essef boards, etc.)
Sewing Clubs – might make bunchers, make activity vests, Velcro vests, etc.
Volunteers – to help you sand, varnish, paint, drill, adapt anything you need
Of course, your local school district of education service center may have funds to pay for materials. If the equipment is needed to implement the child’s IEP, this is considered assistive technology and should be provided. In Texas, the Texas School for the Blind & Visually Impaired Outreach Programs provides some loaner equipment so the team can determine if it is appropriate before purchasing the equipment. Check with your state’s special education department of the state education agency to see what might be available.