Most of us are aware that 20% of our child’s autism funding can be used for materials. It sounds simple on paper, but try following the next example.
A pencil is required for your child’s therapy. The steps you will follow are:
- Price the pencil out at a store of your choice
- Hire a Behaviour Consultant at the going rate ($100/hour?) to complete the Justification for Equipment and Supplies Form (CF0908)
- Send the form to the Autism Funds Unit (AFU) and wait for approval
- The AFU recommends that you receive approval before purchasing the pencil
- After a long delay, you will receive approval in the mail to purchase said product
- You will then purchase the pencil!
- The next step is to send the original receipt (no fax or email here!) to the AFU along with the Reimbursement for Autism Expenses form (CF0926)
- After a long delay, you will then receive a cheque from the government to cover the expense of the pencil (assuming the delays didn’t mean you purchased the pencil outside of the funding year!)
Another issue that drives parents nuts, is the inconsistency of material approval. One parent might be approved for an item one year and another rejected the next.
So what can you use the 20% of funding for? The following list is taken from A Parent’s Handbook: Your Guide to Autism Programs.
- Training within B.C.
- Travel costs to access autism intervention or training within B.C. (round trip greater than 80 kms)
- Equipment, as necessary for effective intervention, outlined in a Justification for Equipment (JFE) Form, from a professional/specialist—pre-approval suggested
What are the ineligible items? Again the list is from A Parent’s Handbook: Your Guide to Autism Programs
- Home repairs, renovations, swimming pools, hot tubs, trampolines, playground equipment
- Household items, including appliances
- General recreation and sports enrolment fees
- Sports/fitness equipment, including bicycles
- Electronics, including televisions, CD players, stereos, MP3 players, game systems, video games, tracking devices, and cellular phones/palm pilots (Is there anyone left on this planet that still uses a Palm Pilot?)
- Non-ASD specific CDs, DVDs, and videos
- Musical instruments (purchase or rental)
- Vitamins, medical supplies, incontinence supplies, orthotics
- Clothing, helmets
- Food (however, small reinforcers for Applied Behaviour Analysis therapy may be eligible)
The following are examples of services that are not eligible:
- Child care
- General recreation lessons such as swimming and karate
- Medical services
- Services provided out of province
From my discussions with many parents, I can tell you that that the ineligible list is incomplete and conversely I have talked with some parents who received approval for ineligible items. As well, just because you had a Behaviour Consultant recommend certain materials, does not mean that it will be paid.
- Why should you bother with material funding?
- Tips to make material funding easier