Families with children or young people with a disability need special support to help keep the family together. Barnardos Australia provides support programs for children and young people with a disability and their families. In addition a number of Barnardos general welfare programs are open to children with a disability.
Extra pressures on families with disabilities may include:
· Social isolation. There is evidence that informal social support can be reduced when there is disability in a family. Children with a disability have few contacts outside the family.
· Living under stress, including tiredness, anxiety prompted by a sense of social stigma and depression.
· Financial pressure. The families of children with a disability bear increased costs due to restricted parental income, medical costs, transport, day-care and education, specialist services, educational aids, help in the home, special foods and clothing.
Barnardos has concentrated its efforts to support families affected by these difficulties in order to help them keep their child with them so as to avert a family breakdown.