Sample Materials

Developing a Funding Strategy

The first thing to remember when seeking funding for assistive technology is that funding is always available. However, the journey may take a while and may try your patience. Do not give up! Persistence, coupled with knowledge, is the key to success.

Determining age, disability, and other basic eligibility criteria will shorten the process and allow you to "navigate the funding streams". Knowing what device or equipment is needed and for what purpose(s) is an important factor, because all funding sources have a particular focus or purpose, such as employment, medical, or education. Knowing the purpose(s) or use of the assistive technology, therefore, can assist you to narrow down the list of possible funding sources. Ask questions; seek out information, suggestions and guidance from your peers, services providers and professionals in the field of assistive technology. Learn all that you can! Gathering the right information and documenting your needs are fundamental in your approach to obtaining funding and will become a core part of your request to the funding source(s).

In developing a funding strategy, you should follow some basic steps to increase your chances of success. The development and use of funding worksheets can be beneficial and help you work with accuracy and efficiency. We also recommend that you keep a diary of names, phone numbers, and related notes.

The following steps and strategies are based on those presented previously in the Georgia (1997), Kentucky (1992) and North Carolina (1993) funding guides developed by these states' assistive technology projects. We hope that these steps will help you both understand the process of obtaining funding and actually get funding assistance.

There are five steps to acquire funding for assistive technology:

Step 1: Why is assistive technology needed?

Step 2: What assistive device, equipment, or service is needed?

Step 3: What potential funding sources are available?

Step 4: What happens when my funding is approved?

Step 5: What if my request is denied?