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The National Autism Association will close applications on July 1 for the 2011 applications for the Helping Hands program. The reason? The ever increasing number of applicants for assistance outstripped the Association's current funding for the program. According to NAA's website, they received an overwhelming number of requests for assistance this year.
The Helping Hand Program provides families with financial assistance in getting necessary medical treatments/testing, supplements, and behavioral therapy services for their child with autism.
Many grant applicants are single parents or parents who have recently suffered from unemployment. Past grant recipients noted that the Helping Hands program kept them from having to make unwelcome choices between paying for necessities like rent and seeking help for their child. "The financial hardship that accompanies kids with autism is overwhelming, especially in a single parent household with limited income," noted one mother. "Without your financial help, I was not able to provide the prescribed supplements for my son and now, I can give him what he needs."