Navigate Life Texas: Resources for kids with disabilities and special needs

Navigate Life Texas: Resources for kids with disabilities and special needs

Finding Childcare for Your Child

06/09/2015 | Published by: Cindi Paschall

Summer can be exhausting for parents.  We try to make it fun for our children while working or just trying to beat the heat in Texas.  When you have a child with a disability, you may need more help than the average family.  Your child may also need around-the-clock care and you are always looking for good attendants or child care services for your children. Even when you have a way to pay for the care, it’s hard to find good help. Listed below are some ideas for finding the help you need.

Use social media. Post on Facebook that you are looking to hire someone. You can ask Facebook friends if they know of someone who needs work. Your friend can act as a reference for anyone she recommends.

Ask area churches, synagogues, mosques or other faith-based organizations. They are often a good place to find childcare help. The faith-based organization can act as a reference for anyone they recommend. The youth or college pastor may know of someone in their group who might be interested in helping with your child.

Check local colleges and nearby college campuses. College students are often looking for work. There are job boards in common areas of colleges such as the student center, library or dining hall. You can make a sign to hang on the bulletin boards. Don’t write any personal information about your child or family on the sign, but do leave your contact number and email address.

Ask your friends - mention that you are looking to hire someone to help take care of your child. Talk to your neighbors about it, too. The more you mention your need, the better chance you have of finding someone.

Find respite care. Many local places of worship offer monthly respite care. You can google “respite for children with disability” or “respite for children with special needs.”  The volunteers at these events might want to work for you.  Be sure to check out this website to find services, groups, and events in your area.  

Do you know about Take Time Texas?  They provide a database of respite providers and helpful tools.  Take a look at Care.com for a variety of care giving options. 

When you find someone you are considering hiring, ask for references. You should call each of the references. Ask questions about the person’s work, personality, and values. This will help to ensure that the person is a good fit for the job and your child.

Then spend time training the person. Be upfront about the details of the job. Talk about duties, pay, and expectations. Don’t throw a new helper to the wolves, so to speak. Arm them with the skills and information they need. Spend time preparing the worker. A well-trained worker will likely do a better job and will enjoy the work.

It might be hard and take time to find someone to take care of your child, but it can help your stress level and make life a lot easier.