We are a family that has been brought together through faith in God, and the love He has instilled in us, along with the desire to help others. We were foster parents for a few years in Washington state, and over the course of that time, we had seven different children in our care. Most of them had some level of special needs such as physical and occupational therapy, counseling, overcoming addictions, and more. We’ve had our son since he was six weeks old, and he was born as a NAS baby, which to simplify, he was born addicted to numerous drugs due to his mother’s use while he was still growing inside her. His first six weeks of life was spent in and out of intensive care, and a few weeks at the Pediatric Interim Care Center where volunteers go and hold the babies for hours on end to help calm them and build that connection through human touch. After those six weeks, he came to live with us, and he’s now going on eight years old. He’s awesome, we love him so much! As he’s grown, we’ve realized he needs more and more help to get things done due to symptoms that appear similar to ADHD or ADD, but the treatment isn’t the same. The drugs they use to treat those tend to have either no effect, or bad effects on him, so we’ve sought out other things to help. This is a learning process for us, and is still being researched for methods to treat. What we’d like to do is set up something that can be a resource hub for other families in similar situations. It doesn’t have to be NAS, any special needs are welcome. Our goal is to share information and resources with other families. Insurance in Tennessee isn’t the greatest, so many families here struggle just to pay all the regular bills, and then have little or no money for any kind of special treatments, or maybe even an evening out for mom and dad. We hope to raise money and a list of resources to help these families by offering to share resources that we discover along the way, and to offer to help pay for the things they may otherwise be unable to afford. We want to be able to offer the simple comfort of a list of babysitters that have passed background checks, and perhaps the funds for them to cover the sitter so they can get away for a few hours, or funds for treatments or even non-traditional treatments. Occupational therapy for our son would have been $200 a visit, and they wanted him to go twice a week. The insurance through my job wouldn’t pay for any of that until I’ve paid $4,000 out of pocket, and that was with choosing the most expensive insurance offered that would have the highest benefits. We’ve opted to put our son in martial arts classes that only cost $75 a month, and he gets many of the same benefits at a fraction of the cost. We’ve consulted his doctor to make sure this was a good idea, and she agreed. He has gone from being easily distracted to doing much better at following instructions and paying attention for longer periods of time. He loves it more than occupational therapy, and seems to truly get more out of it. It’s things like this, or even offering assistance for families that want to follow traditional therapies but can’t afford it, that we are looking to do. We want to open a forum that allows suggestions, but also accepts donations to help families with special needs children.