New grant program authorizes Federal CARES Act funding to assist families of children with disabilities & special needs.
The Union County Freeholder Board is pleased to announce the new “Rest Easy Caregivers” grant opportunities for families in need of assistance in caring for children with disabilities and special needs during the COVID-19 outbreak. Approximately $1 million of Federal CARES Act dollars with fund the grant program.
“The Rest Easy Caregivers grant program is designed to help families who have been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis to care for their children with disabilities,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella. “With a trained respite care worker to assist them, parents can make time to pursue employment opportunities and tend to tasks that require them to be outside of the home.”
“The Freeholder board is dedicated to finding ways to help all of our residents during this time of crisis, and the new grant program focuses on the challenges faced by families with special needs children. It is the result of many conversations I have had with special education educators, parents and caregivers, who are searching for resources that support the ability of school-age special needs children and young adults to continue learning and making progress from home, until they can return to their classorooms. The funds will provide additional assistance to Union County students who are most in need, while offering caregivers an opportunity to pursue other obligations while the respite provider is there,” said Freeholder Sergio Granados, who is the liaison to the Human Services Advisory Committee.
The Rest Easy Caregivers grant program will provide for in-home respite services Monday through Saturday, with a limit of 10 hours weekly.
Expenses covered by the program also include administrative support and supplies needed for COVID-19 prevention.
The grant program covers all 21 municipalities; however, applications will be awarded on a first come, first served basis. Priority will be given to applicants residing in designated Communities of Opportunity, as identified in the 2019 Union County Department of Human Services Community Needs Assessment. The Communities of Opportunity include Elizabeth, Hillside, Linden, Plainfield, Roselle, Rahway, and the Township of Union.
For more information about programs and services for Union County residents with disabilities and special needs, visit the Office for Persons with Disabilities and Special Needs online or contact the Office Director, Manuel Ramirez, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 908-527-4807.
For more information and updates on all Union County services during the COVID-19 outbreak, including the Drive-Through Test Center at Kean University and the Mobile Test Unit walk-up sites, visit ucnj.org/covid19. General information about COVID-19 and updates on statewide vaccine planning are available through the New Jersey Department of Health at nj.gov/health.
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