A Group Respite Pilot Project for Children with Special Needs

Little boy with Down Syndrome colors with his mom in their home.

Being a caregiver for a family member or loved one with special needs is difficult. This pilot project documents the enthusiasm expressed by parents of children for accessible respite care and its potential for positive impact on these families. A group respite care program has spawned an inter-professional opportunity to collaborate and coordinate the care and therapeutic activities for these children. Future interventions should address the needs of these children’s family caregivers. The need to continue the respite service with a research focus to establish best practice for these specific respite services has also been revealed. In addition, there is a need to evaluate overall health outcomes of the child with special needs and the family caregiver.