Health Information Center

Grants for Families of Children with Autism

Released: 1/29/2008

Source: Lisa Jo Rudy,

There’s no doubt about it: autism is expensive. For some families, though, the cost of autism can be devastating. That’s why the National Autism Association has created a grant program specifically for families of children with autism who are in financial crisis.

If you are a family residing in the United States with a child on the autism spectrum aged birth to 18, you may qualify for the grant. The maximum you may request is $1,500. Money from the grant may be applied ONLY to biomedical treatments, supplements or therapies for your child with autism – and the money is paid directly to vendors (not to families).

Similar grants are offered to families by Act-Today for Autism, Autism Family Resources, and United Healthcare Children’s Foundation. The important point to note is that money from these grants never goes directly to families – and it may be used only for autism treatments and related costs (not to, for example, keep the house warm in winter).

If you are in search of a grant for autism treatment, these grant opportunities are legitimate resources. Many advertised grant opportunities, however, are not. A Google search will almost certainly lead you to sites and ads for “free grants for autism.” Many of these organizations will require you to pay in advance for your “free grants” – an absurd idea, since grant, by their very nature, are “free.”

If any agency or individual requests money from you as part of a grant application process, run fast and far. Then, consider reporting that agency or individual to the police.

Do you know of other legitimate grant programs for families coping with autism? If so, please let us know! Know of any to be avoided? Your help is appreciated!

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