Alternative Financing Resources
The Ability Loan Program
Alabama’s Alternative Finance Program (The Ability Loan Program) for individuals with disabilities and their families allows applicants to borrow money at low-interest and/or for extended terms for the purchase of assistive technology, adaptive equipment, and related services. Alternative financing needs may include but will not be limited to a means of: a) paying for devices not covered by public programs; b) providing a loan sooner than other public programs, and/or; c) having another funding source available.
The alternative financing program is administered through the Southern Disability Foundation Inc. , a community-based organization founded in collaboration with STAR.
Visit ADRS for application information.
Securing a grant may be time-consuming, but it can be a good option to purchase equipment if your funding is limited. Many disability-related organizations offer grants for various purposes. You may want to check with organizations you’re affiliated with to see what they offer.
Savings accounts for individuals with disabilities. Learn more at https://al.enablesavings.com.
iCanConnect, also known as the National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program, is a federal program administered locally in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa and the Northern Mariana Islands. Look up your local program contact to learn more and see if you or someone you know qualifies.
Brighter Tomorrow Grant
The Brighter Tomorrow Grant from the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation provides up to $1,000 for equipment that improves quality of life by enhancing safety, self-sufficiency, comfort or well-being. Applicants must be diagnosed with MS and be over 18 or be the parent of a minor child with MS and have no existing financial coverage such as Medicaid or private insurance. For more info, call 888/673-6287 (MSFOCUS) or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Travis Roy Foundation
The Travis Roy Foundation offers grants for anyone who sustained a spinal cord injury from an accident. Applicants must specify a particular piece of equipment to be funded between $2,000-$5,000. To apply for the grant, visit www.travisroyfoundation.org/sci/grants/application/.
The Elsie Bellows Fund
The Elsie Bellows Fund, operated by United Cerebral Palsy, provides grants for purchasing equipment that increases, maintains or improves the functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities. Applicants must demonstrate financial need and not have other funding resources. To learn about the Elsie Bellows Fund, email email@example.com.
Muscular Dystrophy Association
Loan closets and organizations that recycle used medical equipment can be a no- or low-cost alternative to a costly purchase. They can also be great places to donate equipment that you’re no longer using. Equipment loan length can range from temporary to as long as you need something. The Muscular Dystrophy Association operates one of the largest equipment programs in the country for people with neuromuscular diseases. You can get more information about the program by calling 800/572-1717. For more organizations that can provide used equipment, please visit www.rmmor.org/nonprofits.htm.
United Healthcare Children’s Foundation
This program assists with medical services and some types of assistive technology only for children who have private insurance and whom are not covered by Medicaid. United Healthcare Children’s Foundation offers qualifying families up to $5,000 annually, per child ($10,000* lifetime max) to help pay for medical services and equipment such as physical, occupational and speech therapies, counseling services, surgeries, prescription medications, wheelchairs, orthotics, eyeglasses and hearing aids. Visit there website for more information of eligibility guidelines and the application process.
Danielle’s Foundation is offered to parents of children with cerebral palsy and brain injury to get their children the therapies and equipment. The child must have a diagnosis of cerebral palsy or brain injury, and must be requesting the grant for assistance towards a specific therapy or medical equipment. For more information and to receive an application please contact them at 1-800-511-2283.
Bridging Apps from Easter Seals out of Texas offers a funding list. Eligibility is specific to disability, location or other. Read through the listing and contact the source directly to determine if funding is available.
The Melvin Weinstein Parkinson’s Foundation
The Melvin Weinstein Parkinson’s Foundation (“MWPF”) is a not-for-profit organization that raises money to purchase medical equipment and health supplies for Parkinson’s patients to help with the maintenance of safe and healthier living environments. Contact them by phone at 757-313-9729.
Computers for the Blind
For individuals that are blind or low vision and need assist purchasing a low cost computer, there is a resource based in Texas, called Computers for the Blind. Contact number is 214-340-6328 and email address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Bank of America
Bank of America offers access Loans offers financing for accessible vehicles and access for homes.
Digital Federal Credit Union
Digital Federal Credit Union offers a financing option for accessible autos.
Friends of Man
The Friends of Man offers assistance for individuals and children by accepting a referral from a professional or school representative only. Individuals can not apply directly. This charity offers assistance for medicine, prostheses, wheelchairs, eye glasses, dentures, medical equipment, daycare, training and education, hearing aids and more. Their contact information is as follows: Friends of Man, P.O. BOX 937, Littleton, CO 80160-0937, (303) 798-2342.
Ralph Braun Foundation and the National Organization for Vehicle Accessibility
The Ralph Braun Foundation and the National Organization for Vehicle Accessibility works nationally to provide vehicle modification grants to individuals with disabilities in need of financial assistance. This link gives the details on the National Organization for Vehicle Accessibility eligibility requirements.
This program provides hearing aids for US residents that are of low income and have no other resource to acquire hearing aids. (This is not a matching funds option). Starkey Hearing Foundation offers the Hear Now program that coordinates a national hearing aid bank and accepts hearing aid donations from people all over the country. Hear Now works with local hearing healthcare providers throughout the US who volunteer their time and service to test, fit and follow up on the patient and their adjustment to the hearing aids. The applicant is responsible for finding a provider in his/her area to provide the professional services through the process. There is an application processing fee of $125 per hearing requested. When an application is approved, aids are given to the applicant at no additional cost. The hearing aids provided are Behind the Ear models and are new. Custom hearing aids are not provided by Hear Now. To learn more about the program, or request materials for the program, call Hear Now at 800-328-8602
Gift of Sound
Miracle Ear Foundation, Gift of Sound Program, offers a last resort grant for hearing aids to individuals that cannot afford hearing aids within their guidelines. For example: applicants must have a hearing loss that requires amplification (hearing aids), children who have a mild or greater hearing loss, and adults who have a moderate or greater hearing loss. Applicants must complete an application form and provide a current audiogram. Children 18 years and younger must have medical clearance dated within the last 6 months signed by a physician (MD, ENT). While medical clearance is encouraged for adults, a signed medical waiver is acceptable. There is a non-refundable application fee of $150 for adults the age of 19 or older. Visit their website for more information on eligibility requirements.
Hearing Impaired Kids Endowment is a national charity that can be a funding resource for hearing aids and assistive listening devices for children up to age 20. To receive an application, persons may call (402) 592-7987 or may write to: The HIKE Fund, c/o the International Center for Jobs Daughters, 233 W. 6th Street, Papillion, NE 68047.
National Foundation for the Blind
NFB offers the NFB Scholarship program for post-secondary bound students. Each year at its national convention in July, the NFB gives scholarships to recognize achievement by blind scholars. They also provide the Free White Cane Program.
American Foundation for the Blind
AFB offers college scholarships and computer lessons for the elderly.
OneSight is a scholarship program for centers that aid in the delivery of eyewear and genuine eye care to global and national eye clinics. http://onesight.org/