Searching for ways to pay for Assistive Technology (AT)? This page is designed to help Maine people with disabilities and their families find the financial resources to pay for AT.
There are three basic funding sources:
- organizations offering funding, services or equipment for loan
- foundations and organizations offering grants
- financial institutions offering low-interest loans
Searching for funding is always a difficult task. We recommend that you begin your search by contacting the following organizations, foundations and loan institutions to determine eligibility.
If you are unsuccessful in your search, please take a look at the other Resources and Publications located at the bottom of this document. You may find these useful.
Organizations offering funding, services or equipment loans
Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) - State of Maine Chapter
- Must have a neuromuscular disability
- Must be registered with MDA
AT That May be Funded:
For more information - Please see complete details on the MDA - Maine website
Muscular Dystrophy Association of Maine
39 Mechanic Street, Suite 100
Westbrook, ME 04092
P: 207-854-3749 or toll free 800-339-3749
AUDIENT helps low income people nationwide access quality hearing aids and related care at a significantly lower cost. AUDIENT income qualifies families to be eligible for a discount on brand name hearing aids available through the AUDIENT Alliance's national network of dedicated hearing care providers. Brand selection includes Oticon, Phonak, Siemens, Widex, & Unitron hearing aids.
Low income people (households earning up to 250% above the national poverty level) nationwide who need access quality hearing aids.
AT That May be Funded
- One or two new digital hearing aids,
- A fitting,
- Three follow-up visits or adjustments,
- Ear molds,
- A manufacturer's warranty (1 or 2 years).
For more information - Visit the AUDIENT website or call 1-866-956-5400 and ask for AUDIENT
Grahamtastic Connection provides free laptops or tablets and internet access to seriously ill children for educational purposes. We concentrate on supporting very ill children who are too sick to leave their hospital room or bed. This enables the child to continue their education, connect with their teachers and classrooms, submit homework assignments, etc.
AT That May be Funded
- Laptops and tablet computers
- Internet access
- VGo robot
21 Bradeen Street, Suite 107
Springvale, Maine 04083
For more information - The Grahamtastic Connection website
P: 207.324.0888 ext. 209
Foundations and organizations offering grants
Travis Roy Foundation - Grant Program
- Assistance is awarded to paraplegics or quadriplegics paralyzed due to a spinal cord injury
- Applicants must demonstrate financial need
- Applicants must reside in the United States
AT That May be Funded
Eligible items include upgrade and maintenance of wheelchairs, vehicle modifications (i.e., hand controls or lifts), home modifications including ramp and elevator installation, and other adaptive equipment. PLEASE NOTE: Grants are not currently available towards the purchase of new or used vans; funds are available for modifications to existing vehicles.
Maine Home Repair Network
The Maine Home Repair Network a program of the Maine State Housing Authority, offers help to low-income homeowners who may not be able to afford necessary home repairs and home replacement. If you are eligible, the Maine Home Repair Network may be able to help you with a number of things including handicap accessibility improvements.
For more information - Maine Home Repair Network
The Starkey Hearing Foundation
The Starkey Hearing Foundation is sustained by the efforts of thousands of volunteers and donors around the world delivering more than 50,000 hearing aids annually through more than 100 hearing missions a year in countries stretching from the U.S. to Vietnam.
The Sharkey Foundation's Hear Now program is a national non-profit program committed to assisting permanent U.S. residents who are deaf or hard-of-hearing and have limited financial resources. The work of Hear Now is supported through the contributions of many benefactors. We receive no government funding. All donations – money, time, hearing aids – allow the program to survive and give the gift of hearing domestically.
For more information - Starkey Hearing Foundation - Hear Now program.
Hearing Loss Association of America
The Hearing Loss Association of America does NOT provide direct funding of assistive technology but does provide a website listing organizations that may provide funding. The website also provides information about other ways to find funding.
For more information - Hearing Loss Association of America
Ford Mobility Motoring Program
Ford Mobility Motoring offers financial assistance toward the cost of the installation of adaptive equipment on a new Ford, Lincoln or Mercury vehicle. The program also offers Ford Credit Mobility Financing and comprehensive Roadside Assistance.
For More information - Ford Mobility Motoring Program
HOME Retro Program
The HOME Retro Program, administred by AlphaONE provides up to $15,000 in a grant to qualified Maine homeowners to make home modifications for a disabled resident.
- Must own their residence and have a person with a physical disability living at home;
- Must be a single family dwelling - duplexes, additional apartments, etc. do not qualify;
- Must meet the financial eligibility requirements set by the Maine State Housing Authority;
- Must use at least 75% of the grant for accessible rehabs which will improve the quality of the life of the disabled resident;
- Property must have indoor plumbing and if a mobile home, must have been built after 6/15/76
For more information - ALPHA ONE HOME Retro Program
Independent Living Services Program for Maine Citizens with Disabilities
These federally-funded services offer options and greater self-direction for Maine citizens with disabilities. Areas of attention include: health and self-care; self-advocacy; mobility and accessibility of the home or workplace; recreational pursuits; cognitive problems; communication difficulties; assistive technology and adaptive equipment; and social/behavioral or financial problems.
SAFELINK WIRELESS service is a U.S. government supported program for income-eligible households provided by TracFone Wireless, Inc. In order to participate in the SAFELINK WIRELESS service, persons must meet certain eligibility requirements set by each State where the service is to be provided. These requirements are based on a person’s participation in a state or Federal support programs or by meeting the Income Poverty Guidelines as defined by the U.S. Government. SAFELINK WIRELESS service is limited to one person per household.
For more information - the SafeLink Wireless website.
Kelly Brush Foundation
The Kelly Brush Foundation Individual Grant Program awards grants to individuals with paralysis due to a spinal cord injury (SCI). The purpose of the individual grant program is to increase participation in adaptive sports and recreation activities and improve the quality of life for individuals living with SCI. The individual grant program allows economically Kelly Brush Foundation Individual Grant Program disadvantaged individuals with SCI to purchase adaptive sporting equipments such as a monoski or a handcyle. In order for an individual to qualify for the grant he or she must be living in the United States and must supply the Foundation with information about their spinal cord injury, details on their source of income, and a description of the type of equipment they are seeking.
For more information - the Kelly Brush Foundation website.
Robbie Foundation: Helping Children with Special Needs One Child at a Time
The Robbie Foundation is a newly formed 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to assisting children with developmental disabilities (including, but not limited to physical disabilities, speech and language delays, sensory integrated disorders, cerebral palsy, brain injury, autism spectrum disorders, mental retardation). We serve children between the ages of birth and 20 years residing in the state of Maine. Our primary mission is to fund adaptive equipment, assistive technology, therapy treatment and/or any necessary item not covered by insurance. By providing such services, our hope is to improve the quality of life for children with special needs.
For more information - the Robbie Foundation website.
ACT Today! - Autism Care and Treatment
ACT Today! grants are designed to provide access to individuals and families affected by Autism Spectrum Disorders. Grant payments will be made directly to pre-approved treatment providers, assessors or materials vendors.
To best maximize your chance of being funded, please be aware that we will not fund:
- Transportation requests (cars, car repair, transportation passes, air travel)
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
- Personal Needs (rent, utilities, family vacations)
The ACT Today! board provides funding assistance to families on a quarterly basis. Grants will be allocated based on annual fundraising activities. The Board of Directors will determine the number and amounts of each grant at the beginning of each term. Requests for endowments or multi-year grants will not be accepted. Each application is kept in our system for two consecutive grant cycles after which the applicant must re-apply.
For more information - visit the ACT Today! website.
Financial institutions offering low-interest loans
If after reviewing the eligibility requirements for these organization it is determined that you do not qualify, you may then consider making a loan application from one of these resources:
mPower provides low-interest loans for individuals with disabilities and for businesses to make their workplace more accessible to employees and customers. And the program provides more than just funding. mPower can also give you expert advice on adaptive equipment, accessibility design, and the access requirements of the Americans Disability Act (ADA).
127 Main Street
South Portland, ME 04106
For more information - mPower Loan Program.
Digital Credit Union - Mobility Vehicle and Access Loans
Equipment, Home Modifications, and Vehicles with Devices to Aid People with Disabilities
Digital Federal Credit Union
220 Donald Lynch Boulevard
PO Box 9130
Marlborough, MA 01752-9130
P: 508.263.6700 or toll free 800.328.8797
For more information - Digital Federal Credit Union - Other Loan Products or information on loans for adapted vehicles.
Information about financial literacy and budgeting:
- Financial Freedom: Borrowing for Assistive Technology - from AlphaOne
- Better Money Habits - from Bank of America and Kahn Academy
- 2014 Top 12 Financial Capability Links for Persons with Disabilities, Family Members and Service Providers
Other organizations/agencies that may be able to provide financial assistance to acquire assistive technology:
- ALS Association
- DREAMMS for Kids
- Disability Resources
- Easter Seals
- National Spinal Cord Injury Association
- United Cerbral Palsy
- PCs for Maine - inexpensive PCs for needy Mainers
- HHS.gov website on Medicaid
- HHS.gov website on Medicare
If you are still looking for help perhaps one of these resources or publications can help:
- Commonly Asked Questions About Assistive Technology Devices and Services: An Educators', Parents', and Advocates' Guide
- Easy Reference Handbook to Maine Assistive Technology Funders
- Maine Care and Assistive Technology: What’s Covered and What’s Not
- Overview for Funding Assistive Technology