In honor of Giving Tuesday, consider donating to one of these five Michigan nonprofits that support people with cerebral palsy and other disabilities. With the holiday season coming up, you may also want to make a contribution in honor of a friend or family member!
This is a branch of the national organization United Cerebral Palsy (UCP), which serves over 176,000 people each day. Some of UCP of Michigan’s programs include:
- Ramps for Independence: Providing wheelchair ramps to those who would otherwise struggle to afford them
- Michigan Assistive Technology Loan Fund: Giving low-interest loans for obtaining assistive technology/adaptive equipment
- Michigan Employment Loan Fund: Offering loans for assistive technology that can reduce barriers to employment or enable self-employment
Researchers from the University of Michigan are exploring the causes of cerebral palsy, working to understand the different ways in which it can impact individuals, and testing groundbreaking treatments and therapies. Some of their latest projects include:
- Assistive Technologies and Cognitive Testing: Developing adapted versions of standardized tests for children with physical and speech impairments.
- Chronic Disease Risk and Metabolics: Previous research at U of M has shown that people with cerebral palsy are more likely to develop chronic illnesses such as heart disease. In order to better understand this, researchers are now investigating how cerebral palsy can affect important metabolic processes such as oxygen consumption and glucose use.
- Quality of Life and Treatment Outcomes: This project looks at health and quality of life in adults and teens with cerebral palsy, particularly those who have had a selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR). (Click here to learn more about SDR and other surgeries for cerebral palsy.)
In order to support cerebral palsy research at U of M, please click here.
This foundation supports the organization Early On Michigan, which provides early intervention services for very young children (between birth and age three) with cerebral palsy and other disabilities. These include autism spectrum disorder, vision and hearing impairments, Down syndrome, and speech and language difficulties. In addition to supporting direct services for children with disabilities, the Early On Foundation provides grants for awareness and outreach projects, research, personnel training, and family involvement. To learn more about donating to the Early On Michigan Foundation, click here.
This is a state branch of the national organization The Arc, which serves people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The Arc Michigan coordinates state government advocacy efforts, helps people with disabilities to become more independent, works to increase community inclusion, helps with financial planning, and much more. To donate to The Arc, click here. They also accept vehicle donations. For more information on that, please call (877) ARC-2270.
This is a recent merger of community partners Advocacy Services for Kids (ASK) and Parent to Parent of SW MI (P2P). They support families whose children have developmental, mood, emotional, or behavioral challenges. ASK has Family Support Partners, who are parents experienced in caring for children struggling with these issues. They can help parents of young children, or parents who are feeling overwhelmed, with understanding the resources available to them. They can also help to establish goals, prepare for important meetings with school officials, etc. ASK also encourages young adults who have personal experience coping with emotional disturbances/mental health issues to become Youth Peer Support Specialists. These specialists help young people to overcome barriers to success, explore career options, decrease isolation, and more. To donate to ASK Family Services, or learn about supporting them through Amazon Smile, click here.
Do you have a favorite non-profit that works to support people with disabilities? Please comment below, and we’ll consider including them in this piece!