The Pros and Cons of using Professional Advocates for your Special needs Child

Having a child with special needs can be both a rewarding and an exhausting experience at the same time. There might be added memories, like when your child was able to come home from an extended stay at the hospital after they were born, got to come off of the feeding tube and when they at their first solid food.  These are great memories that will last forever, but there are also the horror stories of doctors, doctors appointments, surgeries, teachers, schools and other things. Having a child with these significant special needs and keeping track of all of the doctors information, doctors appointments, doctors notes etc. can be very overwhelming. The same can be said for schools and teachers. It can be very beneficial to have a professional advocate to help you with these appointments and meetings and things so that you do not become overwhelmed.

There are advocates available that can help you in person or just over the phone depending on your situation. If you have a situation that is more than likely going to go to court or could go to court, it might be worth looking into having an advocate that could meet with you in person and attend court dates and things with you, the same could be said for some school related issues. If your child’s rights are being violated in a school setting and you have decided to hire an advocate to look into the situation and speak with the school and any other involved parties on your behalf, it would be in your best interest to find a local advocate, but if the situation looks like it is going to be easily solved with minimal help, you might find an organization that can advocate for you over the phone and/or through e-mails.

Some advocates or organizations work for pay, and then there are advocates and organizations that might be willing to help you voluntarily depending on the individual case. You can find these organizations many different ways. You can find them by word of mouth, by talking to your local social services organizations, through your or your child’s school, your doctor’s office, or maybe even through the social work department at your local hospital. These people should be able to point you in the right direction of services that you may be entitled too. Just remember that you are not going through your situation alone and there are others who have gone through the same or at least similar circumstances that you are.