This summer Jerry and Joan again worked with two camps, Breakaway in Florida and Camp Celebrate in Tennessee. At each camp, we were privileged to spend much of our time with the adult family members who attended—mostly moms and dads. Through one-on-one conversations and group discussions, we sought to better understand the needs of these families and what they feel they need.
What we learned may open your understanding to the needs of families.
- Ideas on how to take a break and deal with the stress of caregiving, particularly as they age.
- Information on guardianship and seeking future plans for loved ones.
- Residential options to help their adult children settle into a new normal before the parent passes away.
- A small supportive residential community for their kids. There are some ministries working toward this goal in specific regions.
- A dynamic and interactive private group on social media to share ideas and questions and learn from others’ experiences any time of day or night.
- Resources for their kids who are no longer children or teens. Historically, services for adults with disabilities are very limited in scope.
- Medical services which consider special needs or disability.
- Other needs mentioned included quality in-home nursing care, transportation services, and day activities.
We love talking with families and hearing their hearts. While we don’t have the answers these parents wish for, we know the One who does. We also network widely around the country, seeking to learn of new resources to share with parents. Would you join us in praying for these parents who love their children dearly and feel stuck in advocating for them sometimes?
If you are a parent or family member of someone with a disability, we’d love to hear what’s on your heart for your loved one with a special need or disability. If you know of a resource in any of these areas, we’d also like to hear from you so we can share it with others.