Financial Planning and Support

Financial Planning can be an important part of planning for your child’s future. In order to protect your child’s eligibility for medical benefits, it may be important to establish a Special Needs Trust - an agreement written by an attorney, which describes how property held in a trust account may be distributed on behalf of the trust beneficiary who has special needs.

ABLE Tennessee

ABLE TN is a savings program designed to help individuals with disabilities put aside money to pay for qualified expenses. These accounts provide the opportunity to save and invest with tax-free earnings to help participants maintain independence and quality of life. This bulletin also provides guidance concerning the treatment of ABLE accounts. There is also a quick breakdown of ABLE here

Affordable Connectivity

Save on your internet bill with the FCC’s Affordable Connectivity Program, you can save on your bill and may be able to get high-speed internet for free. The Affordable Connectivity Program is administered by USAC with oversight from the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).Any household that has a member receiving SSI and MEDICAID can join.

Children's Medicaid Waiver Programs

Resource for Children's Medicaid Waiver programs divided by state with links to more information about the programs.

The Conservatorship Association of Tennessee

The Conservatorship Association of Tennessee is a non-profit organization of people who are concerned about the quality of services for adults who may need assistance in decision-making. Membership is open to individuals interested in improving the lives of Tennesseans who may need conservatorship and other protective services. CAT promotes a nationally recognized standard of excellence in conservatorship and guardianship through networking, continuing education, training, and other programs and services. CAT is an affiliate of the National Guardianship Association.

DSAMT Crisis Grant

DSAMT’s Crisis Grant can assist in providing some assistance with critical living expenses for families in desperate need who live with an individual with Down syndrome. 


The ECF CHOICES program launched in July 2016 with the goal of helping people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to work and to live as independently as possible. In its first year, the program enrolled 1,500 people. In 2018, the program is slated to expand and enroll up to 2,700 members.

Exceptional Parent Magazine

Exceptional Parent provides articles on a variety of special needs topics, including special education.

Family Support Program

Funded by state dollars and designed to assist individuals with severe disabilities and their families to remain together in their homes and communities.

Financial Empowerment Resource Library

ABLE TN is proud to announce a partnership with the Tennessee Financial Literacy Commission, making the Financial Empowerment Resource Library available to all ABLE TN account holders! Learn financial literacy skills to help you navigate life’s financial milestones through 18 short, interactive modules.

Individualized Education Account Program

Provides options for parents and students to choose the education opportunities that best meet their own unique needs through access to public education funds.

Funding Assistance for Adaptive Equipment

Sometimes it can seem impossible to find funding for a piece of adaptive equipment you know will vastly enrich and enhance your child or client’s life. Includes Online funding resource guides and a list of funds and foundations set up to help with funding for disabilities.

Katie Beckett Program

Tennessee’s Katie Beckett program is for children under the age of 18 with disabilities or complex medical needs.  This program is for children who are not Medicaid eligible because of their parent’s income or assets and has two parts, to provide services and/or help pay for medical care that private insurance does not cover.

Mark's Money

Mark’s Money is a non-profit organization started by the Coonrod family in August 2006 to provide financial assistance to people with Down syndrome to help improve their quality of life. 

Metro Action Commission - Nashville

The Metropolitan Action Commission partners with families in poverty using a Whole Family/2Gen Approach. This approach meets the needs of both the child and the adult in their lives building a system of care around the entire family. Our programs and services break the cycle of poverty by addressing the root causes by increasing family economic security, educational success, and health and well-being from one generation to the next. One of their programs is HOPE Rental Assistance program to help renters impacted by COVID-19 catch up on past due rent and utility payments that are behind up to 12 months.

NeedLink Nashville

NeedLink Nashville helps our neighbors meet basic needs in times of crisis by providing short-term assistance and links to other resources.

PetScreening for Down syndrome

PetScreening supports the Down syndrome community and advocates for the adoption of foster, rescue, and shelter animals. PS4Ds is a philanthropic grant program that gives financial support to individuals with Down syndrome whose quality of life could be made better by adopting an animal. This includes obtaining an animal for the primary purpose of owning a companion animal.

Reece's Rainbow Adoption Support

Reece’s Rainbow promotes the international adoption of children with Down syndrome and other special needs.  By raising money to offer adoption grants on waiting children, we are able to give adoptive families the extra financial help they need to bring a child with Down syndrome or other special needs home from a miserable existence in overseas orphanages.

Rod's Hero's Adoption Support

Racing for Orphans with Down syndrome (RODS) are partnered with Reece's Rainbow to help mitigate some of the costs for international adoption. 

Ruby's Rainbow

The goal and mission at Ruby’s Rainbow is to grant scholarships to adults with Down syndrome who are seeking post-secondary education, enrichment or vocational classes, helping them achieve their dreams of higher education while spreading awareness of their capabilities and general awesomeness.

Scholarship Fund to attend leadership coalition meetings, disability conferences, and disability trainings

Funds can reimburse individuals or families for the cost of registration, attendant care, hotel/lodging, transportation, child care or respite care, meals and other related travel expenses. All scholarship awards are subject to the availability of funds.

Special Care Life Insurance

The Special Care Life Underwriting Program is a program by Mass Mutual that helps make life insurance coverage available to those individuals with three common disability diagnoses to help educate families and caregivers of people with special needs about the importance and steps to help provide a secure financial future.

Tenncare Medicaid

TennCare is the state of Tennessee’s Medicaid program. It provides healthcare to mostly low-income pregnant women, parents or caretakers of a minor child, children and individuals who are elderly or have a disability.

TN Center for Decision-Making Support

TN Center for Decision-Making Support is a shared effort of The Arc Tennessee, the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities, and Disability Rights Tennessee, and is one place to learn about decision-making options for people with disabilities. It has easy-to-understand, accurate information about supported decision-making, power-of-attorney, conservatorship, special needs trusts, ABLE accounts, and more

Tennessee Technology Access Program (TTAP)

The Tennessee Technology Access Program (TTAP) is a statewide program designed to increase access to, and acquisition of, assistive technology devices and services. Through its four core programs: Funding Assistance, Device Demonstration, Device Loan and Device Reutilization, TTAP and a network of five assistive technology centers help people with disabilities and their families find and get the tools that they need to live independent, productive lives where and how they choose. Each of TTAP’s core programs is uniquely designed to both maximize limited resources and improve the understanding of, and to gain better access to, assistive technology devices and services. 

UnitedHealthcare Children's Foundation

he UnitedHealthcare Children’s Foundation (UHCCF) provides medical grants to help children gain access to health-related services not fully covered, by commercial health insurance plans. Families can receive up to $5,000 annually per child ($10,000 lifetime maximum per child), and do not need to have insurance through UnitedHealthcare to be eligible.