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Anyone heard of DARS (disability assistance and rehabilitative services)(sorry long)

Discussion in 'Parents Off Topic' started by Tena, Aug 22, 2009.

  1. Tena

    Tena Approved members

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    Well we had never heard of them either until a few weeks ago. We live in Texas and this is a Texas Dept. so if you live in another state I don't know what your equivalent would be.

    Be Patient with me, this is kind of a long story, but I really wanted to share with everyone here.

    Emily graduated from high school (homeschool, that is another story, LOL) a year early. We went to register her at a local community college and when we asked about her testing in class, eating, etc. they sent us to a disability counselor. She had no problem writing a letter to all of her instructors letting them know everything that Emily would need. Testing in class, eating and/or treating lows, bathroom breaks, even alternate testing dates if her bgs were not cooperating.

    Then she asked us if we had been to DARS (full name in Title). We told her we hadn't heard of it, so she said we ought to go see them as they might would help offset some of Em's expenses. She said they might would help pay for books or something. Well, considering that Emily didn't qualify for any financial aid except for loans we thought it wouldn't hurt to go see them.

    Well we met with the DARS counselor and he told us he wasn't sure if Diabetes was considered a disability or not, but he took all of our info and what her specific needs were (as far as diabetes is concerned) and he also took income info. He told us to call back in a cple of weeks and he would tell us what they decided.

    After 2 weeks, we called and he set us up an appt to see him. When we went in, he just started telling us all the things he needed from the college and we were like, "wait" what are you trying to tell us. He said, we are paying for EVERYTHING, her tuition, books, plus giving her a weekly allowance for gas and supplies. This all takes place for the ENTIRE 4 years of college and the allowance lasts until she has gotten her degree and has gotten a job and held the job for 90 days.

    We were dumbfounded! I could not believe it. I was crying, Em was too. I didn't know what to say but "thank you" and he was like, NO big deal. I told him, "you don't understand, this is a very big deal."

    Now not only do we not have to worry about college expenses, along w/ D expenses, but to be on this program she has to remain a full time student every semester until she is done, so that takes some of the worry about her being on our insurance too.

    All I can say is God is So Good. I believe He went before us and took care of us. As far as I know, they have never done this for a diabetic before.

    Anyway I just wanted to let you guys know, maybe there is something in your area that does the same thing.

    Tena

    editing to clarify: This place is for helping people with disabilities find employment that they can do with their disabililty. Even if you become disabled they will help you get retrained to something you can do with your disability. (I don't know if this makes sense, hard to explain). They are helping Emily so she can get a good job where "she" can maintain her diabetes at the same time (does that make sense)
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2009
  2. MOM to KELLSE

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    Thanks Tina I'll store this in memory for when my DD reaches that age! God is good and I'm so happy that he is working in your life:cwds:
     
  3. sisterbeth43

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    I am so happy for you and your dd. That will be a huge help to you. I'm going to talk to my dd that lives in TX. They may be able to get some help for their 2 children with autism.
     
  4. frizzyrazzy

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    oh my gosh! that's amazing!

    I've never heard of anything like that. That's just fabulous.
     
  5. Flutterby

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    that is terrific news!! that is definitely a blessing!
     
  6. Tena

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    Sisterbeth, This program is to help people with disabilities to find employment. I am not sure how old your dd's children are, but when it comes time for them to find a job I am sure DARS can help them. I would still have her contact them, You never know what they might do.

    I should have clarified that in my original post and I did go back and edit it.

    Tell your dd to keep them in mind for her children. I would have never known about it had it not been for the counselor at the college. I am so thankful to her.
     
  7. clb1968

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    Thank you for this info. I dont know what help they can be for me with my diabetes , but it looks like it might help me more with my hearing loss. Looks like I will be making some phone calls Monday.
     
  8. Tena

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    I also talked with a lady (student) at the college the other day. She is a heart patient and DARS is helping her through nursing school. I think she said she is going to be in home health. Anyway, they even bought her a computer because some of her classes were online and paying for all of her tuition too.

    My thoughts when we went were "at this point ANYTHING will help."

    Also, You are very welcome. I would like to see more people with D getting some help. D is expensive enough and most of the time all avenues are usually closed for us.
     
  9. Kalebsmom

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    That is wonderful news. I wish Iowa did something like that but, they can not even figure out that kids with d deserve the right to test in class.
     
  10. LizinTX

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    We are with DARS for my dh, we can't use them for college because my dh is getting a degree that isn't offered by the local college but that is another loooong story.

    I had no idea that they would help with Jacob. But then our case manager is an ........... idiot, I am only calling him that, because this is a family oriented board. :D

    Thank you for finding this out.
     
  11. dqmomof3

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    Wow, Tena! What an awesome way to begin college, knowing that you don't have to worry about getting it paid for :).
     
  12. Ellen

    Ellen Senior Member

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    Beth - DARS Autism Program: http://www.dars.state.tx.us/stakeholders/autism/index.shtml

    Provider List
    http://www.dars.state.tx.us/stakeholders/autism/provider_list.shtml
    *Any Texas resident can apply for services at any of these providers' offices. You do not need to live in the service area to qualify for services; however, transportation and lodging costs are not covered by this program. Providers are free to set the terms of service delivery, including any financial participation by families. For detailed information about financial expectations and eligibility requirements, please contact the individual service provider directly.

    Two New Providers Selected for Autism Services


    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    July 22, 2009



    (AUSTIN)? The Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS) has selected two new providers under a program to serve Texas children with autism spectrum disorder. The selection of these two new providers represents an expansion of services for children ages 3 through 8.

    Pending final contract execution, the following providers will receive a combined total of $1.6 million for their autism programs:

    Any Baby Can of San Antonio will provide services in Bexar County and the surrounding contiguous counties.

    Center for Autism and Related Disorders, located in Austin, will provide services to the greater Austin area.

    The new providers are in addition to four current providers, each of which have received two-year extensions to their contracts. The current providers are:

    Texana Center, serving primarily Fort Bend, Austin, Matagorda, Colorado, Wharton, Waller, Harris, Montgomery and Galveston counties.

    Mental Health Mental Retardation Authority of Harris County, serving Harris County and the surrounding area, in partnership with the University of Houston at Clear Lake Department of Applied Behavior Analysis.

    Easter Seals of North Texas, serving Dallas and Denton counties and the surrounding area, in partnership with the University of North Texas Department of Behavior Analysis.

    Child Study Center, serving Tarrant County and the surrounding area, in partnership with the University of North Texas Department of Behavior Analysis.

    DARS is a state agency that works in partnership with Texans with disabilities and families with children who have developmental delays to improve the quality of their lives and to enable their full participation in society. To find out more about the agency?s services, call the DARS Inquiries Line at 1-800-628-5115. Information about DARS is also available at www.dars.state.tx.us.
     
  13. Christopher

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    I guess I have mixed feelings about this. I don't want Danielle treated any differently because she has diabetes. I do not consider her disabled. I have never gotten an amusement park pass, or a disabled parking sticker or done Make a Wish, or anything else like that for her. I don't think she needs to be treated any differently just because her pancreas doesn't work. It does not stop her from doing any of the things her friends do. The only difference is she needs to check her bg and take insulin. I do, however, believe she has a right to take care of her diabetes anywhere and anytime she needs to. If that means she falls under the ADA then so be it. To me that doesn't have anything to do with finances.

    Just to be clear, I am not making a judgment about your daughter having her college paid for and even getting a free allowance from the State. If it is working for your family, then that is great. Believe me, I am very concerned about how I am going to pay for Danielle's college in 7 years.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2009
  14. Tena

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    I understand what you are saying. But my husband has just lost about 1/2 of his income. I am trying to help take up the slack but in today's economy its hard. With D expenses, Cost of college, and insurance copays and such, I am thankful to get something. Believe me , we never expected anything. I never would have gone there had it not been for the counselor at the college.

    Also, I don't like the idea of my daughter being disabled either, but you know what, there are a lotof things she has to deal with that a lot of others don't. I also know that this is something she will deal with for the rest of her life, unless God intervenes with a healing or cure. We also went through a little bit of D burnout over the summer and it was hard. So if she can get something that will make this (D) a little bit easier to bear, I am all for it.

    Please don't misunderstand, I am just saying that I am thankful for any kind of help. We are really struggling right now, and I really wasn't sure how we were going to keep her in college so that she could remain on our insurance and keep up with her D expenses too. I just wanted to share in case there were others in the same boat as us.
     
  15. Christopher

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    Understood :cwds:
     
  16. Tena

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    Thank you.
     
  17. MOM to KELLSE

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    Thank you Tina for sharing and I am glad for one that you did and will look into this when we reach that point. We also have had hours cut here but I am thankful for still having insurance but if she was entering college I would be thinking just like you!!!!:cwds:

    I believe that God put you on that course and that he knew long before how to help you in your situation so again what a blessing and thanks for sharing!
     
  18. gboysmom

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    OMG!!! I think this is awesome for you guys!!! I so understand the income thing.
     
  19. Ellen

    Ellen Senior Member

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    As much as I don't want my son to be considered disabled, I'd jump at the chance for 4 years free tuition, books etc.
     
  20. moco89

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    I think I am ineligible due to income.

    In the actual Vocational Rehabilitation handbook, it says that you can only make about a grand a month, for "Basic Living Requirements". I also have a job that probably does put me over the limit, even though my hours are going down due to school starting. So, it is kind of iffy.

    Having a job probably would limit my eligibility too, but even with my tuition paid for by the state, I couldn't stand to not have a steady source of income from a job.

    My parents, who claim me as dependents, probably make me ineligible too due to THEIR income.

    I also have a scholarship too, so I don't necessarily need it either. But, the textbook stipend would be nice. I also drive about 40 miles a day between school and work.

    EDIT: BTW, before anyone debates my choice (or others choice) for playing the disability card in this particular situation, I have multiple disabilities, including two medical problems that are more serious and problemsome than diabetes alone. I am VERY lucky to even be able to work or go to school at this point of time, so please do not question my situation or anyone else's decision, as there may be more to the story. My situation is complicated, and I prefer not to discuss this information openly and in public, so please be considerate.

    ----------------

    Please correct me if I'm wrong about my assumptions regarding eligibility, and I would appreciate it if somebody who has dealt with DARS can answer this for me.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2009

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