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Saskatchewan families with autistic children get increased funding options

Saskatchewan families with autism from ages 6-11 can access more services under the Individualized Funding Program such as life skills programs. Nathaniel Dove / Global News

Families in Saskatchewan who have children with Autism Spectrum Disorder will have access to more funding options under the Individualized Funding program.

Children with ASD from age six to 11 will qualify for the funding. Eligible services include life skills programs, therapeutic day cay camps, summer programs and equine therapy.

Read more: Saskatchewan children 6-11 with autism now eligible for up to $6,000 a year

“The expansion of eligible services will make a positive impact in the daily lives of children with autism and their families,” stated Health Minister Paul Merriman in a media release. “Children who experience disability deserve the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive in ways best suited to them.”

According to a release, an estimated 1,000 families are expected to access individualized funding this year. The new eligible services will build on current services such as respite care, therapeutic equipment and training for parents and caregivers.

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“We’ve heard from parents and caregivers that they wanted more flexibility in using funding,” stated Social Services Minister Lori Carr in the release. “We understand each child has their own unique needs, and as part of our person-centered approach to support, expanding eligible services will allow them that flexibility.”

Read more: Regina Fire Department announces autism alert initiative

In July, the Saskatchewan government announced announced children from ages 6 to 11 were eligible for $6,000 to cover services they will need. The money was allocated in the 2021-2022 budget. Children under six with ASD can receive up to $8,000 annually.

This program involves the Ministries of Health, Social Services and Education to support goals of the 10-year Saskatchewan Disability Strategy and Saskatchewan’s Early Years Plan. Application forms and further information can be found on the Saskatchewan government website under Autism.

 

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