Parenting Resources

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Parenting Support

Parent to Parent (P2P) offers support, information, and education for parents of a child with a disability or special healthcare needs. P2P offers monthly parent support groups, a yearly series of educational workshops, and Helping Parent Matches where parents can be matched with a trained Helping Parent who can give them support and help them feel less alone. 


Respite Care Services

Respite care involves short-term or temporary care of people with special needs for a few hours or weeks, designed to provide some relief to the regular caregiver. While many parents and other caregivers find joy and meaning in caring for children with special needs, the physical and emotional consequences for the caregiver can be overwhelming without some support. It may be harder to find child care for children with disabilities and special needs. Many families will need to find respite care. Check out this guide from Informing Families called Pathways to Respite for more information on ways to access respite care.

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 Guardianship and Supported Decision Making 

Guardianship is a legal process through which an individual or business is given the legal authority by the court to make decisions for another person. Many people think that guardianship is the best way to help adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities make important decisions. The truth is, guardianship is often not necessary. In fact, Washington state’s guardianship law requires considering alternatives first.


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There are two main types of accounts in Washington State that specifically benefit people with disabilities, ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) Accounts and DDETF (Developmental Disability Endowment Trust Fund) Accounts. These accounts enable people with disabilities to save for their future without compromising their current benefits such as Social Security, food stamps, and Medicare. 

A Washington State ABLE Savings Plan allows people with eligible disabilities to save for their everyday needs, invest in a tax-free account and prepare for the future without losing their state or federal benefits. Washington State ABLE Savings Plans are easy to open and simple to manage. Individuals can make direct contributions and can also make payroll contributions through the ABLE to Work program. Friends and family members can also easily contribute to ABLE accounts.

The DD Endowment Trust Fund allows individuals with developmental disabilities, or their families, to set aside funds for future use without affecting their eligibility for government services and benefits, such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid. Funds can be withdrawn from the trust and used for many services not covered by other benefits, including recreation, therapy, clothing, and transportation. The DD Endowment Trust Fund is an easy and effective way to prepare for the future (and life’s unexpected expenses) without risking financial eligibility for needed benefits and services.


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