Resources Available When Caring for a Child with Special Needs

Resources Available as You Care for a Child with Special Needs

Unity Point Health-Witwer Children’s Therapy Center

 (319) 369-8407

Specialists work closely with parents, child, family physician and school to design an individualized program offering physical, occupational and speech therapy. 

UnityPoint Health-Child Protection Center - The Childhood Assessment Referral Early Intervention (CARE) Program

(319) 369-7908

Mission is to provide medical care for drug affected children, as well as, support for their caregivers to ensure the overall well-being of the child and their family.

Teaching Interventions to Empower and Strengthen families (TIES) Program
(319) 558-4861 
TIES serves families with young children, under the age of 6 years, who have mild to severe behavior problems, including those with special needs. TIES is a partnership of Unity Point Health - St. Luke’s Hospital, Abbe Center for Community Mental Health, Grant Wood AEA, Linn County Public Health and Mercy Medical Center.

Arc of East Central Iowa

(319) 365-0487 

The Arc of East Central Iowa offers multiple programs and services in seven counties in Iowa. They deliver high-quality programs that produce results. More importantly, they improve the quality of life for individuals and families affected by epilepsy, autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, ADHD, and brain injury. They believe in building better lives for people with disabilities and their families.

Family Connections - Cedar Rapids Public Library
Family Connections is a network of local agencies and programs working together to support families and promote healthy growth and early learning in young children. Currently, fifteen non-profit agencies have signed an agreement to dedicate time, staff and services for young children and families at the library. Partner programs cover multiple life areas such as physical and emotional health, early education, child care, family stability and improvement.

Four Oaks - Pediatric Integrated Health

(319) 784-2250 
This program for Linn County children on Medicaid helps coordinate mental and physical health needs. 

Grant Wood Area Education Agency
(319) 399-6700 
Grant Wood AEA is one of nine of Iowa’s intermediate educational service agencies. Staff work as educational partners with public and accredited, non-public schools to improve the learning outcomes and well-being of all children and youth in a seven-county area.

HACAP Crisis Child Care/Respite Program
(319) 393-7811 
The Crisis Child Care Program and/or Respite Care are available free of charge to families in Linn and Benton Counties, regardless of income. Parents voluntarily place their children and retain all parental rights. Parents are encouraged to self-refer, and referrals are also accepted from all public and private agencies. This is available to families with children ages newborn through fourteen years old. All care is dependent on the availability of providers. 


Hawkeye Area Down Syndrome Association (HADSA)
Email: info@hadsa.org

HADSA offers a connection to new parents with several of our established families in HADSA. They also have an extensive library of reading materials and parent packets.

Homestead - Innovative Solutions for Autism
Phone: (515) 967-4369; Toll Free: (888) 228-8476
Homestead helps guide parents through area resources specializing in autism.

Iowa COMPASS
Phone: 1-800-779-2001 
Free information about disability programs, services, adapted equipment and ways to pay for them. Free listings to buy or sell adapted equipment. Free legal help for problems getting adapted equipment.

Iowa Family Support Network
Phone: 1-888-425-4371 
This program provides care and resources to Iowa’s families, children, child healthcare providers and other professionals working with families with young children. The Iowa Family Support Network(IFSN) can connect you and your child to Early ACCESS supports and services if you have concerns about development and also link you with family support services and parent education groups near your home. They can connect you with community resources including, but not limited to: child care providers, therapy options, nurse or health care providers, housing assistance, employment opportunities, health insurance and legal help.

Iowa Foster and Adoptive Parents Association
Phone: 515-289-4567 or 1-800-277-8145 
Resource to foster, adoptive and kinship families in Iowa. They offer peer support through peer liaisons and Resource Information Specialists (RIS), Trainings/Conferences, Friends of Children in Foster Care, Subsidized Adoption Respite, Support Groups and Foster Allegation Information Resource (FAIR) Line.

Linn County Community Core Services - Resources sheets available:

Linn County Early Childhood Iowa
(319) 892-5721 
Funded programs offer services such as child mental health and behavioral supports, child and family resources/parent education, early care and education/quality support and preventative child health needs.

Parent Education Consortium    (319) 377-9839
Accredited organization and trusted information source for patents and caregivers with children age 0-5years.  Coordinate free Parent-Child workshops in Linn County.

Safe Kids Worldwide  (319) 286-5268
Safe Kids Linn County is led by Cedar Rapids Fire and Police Departments, which provides dedicated and caring staff, operations support and other resources to assist in achieving our common goal: keeping kids safe.  Based on the needs of the community, this coalition implements evidence-based programs, such as car-seat checkups, safety workshops and sports clinics, that help parents and caregivers prevent childhood injuries.

Social Security - Applying for SSI Disability Benefits for a Child 
Phone: 1-866-495-0088

Apply for Disability
Disability Application Kit
Disability Publication

Tanager Place - Pediatric Integrated Health  (319) 286-4531
Pediatric Integrated Health coordinates services for children who are on Medicaid and have a qualifying behavioral health diagnosis.  A professional care team helps to coordinate and streamline services.  Services offered to children in Benton, Delaware, Iowa, Johnson, Jones and Linn Counties.

UIHC Stead Family Children’s Hospital - Center for Disabilities and Development     
1-888-573-5437
The Center for Disabilities and Development at University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital is dedicated to improving the health and independence of people with disabilities and creating a life with opportunities for everyone.  People who come to our clinic often have complex needs, which are why we use a team approach, bringing together the right experts to help families find answers.  At the heart of each team are the patient and family.  The center has been designated the state’s University Center for Excellence on Disabilities and strives to be the state’s most trusted resource for health care, training, research, and information for people with disabilities.