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Resources for special needs caregivers and parents

Georgia provides a multitude of resources for people with special needs, both children and adults. But, what about caregivers and parents? Where can they turn when the energy for caregiving has been temporarily or even permanently exhausted? Fortunately, the needs of this vital group have not been overlooked. A number of resources can be found that are directed toward caregivers and parents of special needs children and adults.

Caregiver Media Group provides information and support for both family and professional caregivers. It publishes "Today's Caregiver," a magazine dedicated to caregivers. A similar resource is Exceptional Parent Magazine, an online family and caregiver resource. An important state resource is the Georgia Parent Support Network. This group is dedicated to providing support and education for mentally ill children and their families.

National groups include organizations, such as the National Caregivers Library. Its resources are available at no charge through alliances with professionals, businesses, and other organizations that serve seniors and their caregivers. Another national organization is the National Family Caregivers Association. This group proves education and support for the 50 million Americans who care for loved ones with special needs.

The needs of military families coping with providing special needs care are served by the National Military Family Association for Exceptional Family Member Program. Each branch of the military has its own Exceptional Family Member Program. One of the most important functions served by the EFMP is coordinating the assignment process to guard against people being assigned to a post that lacks adequate facilities for special needs children and adults.

The Georgia Americans with Disabilities Act coordinator provides a centralized referral service for the organizations mentioned above and for other groups that provide similar services. Attorneys who provide legal services to special needs families can also help caregivers find the right support organization.

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