OMAHA – Easterseals Nebraska (ESN) is pleased to announce it has been awarded a $100,000 grant from United Way of the Midlands Karnett Trust. The Karnett Family Trust Grant funds programs that are focused on the care, education, and training of children with intellectual/developmental disabilities in the Omaha metropolitan area.
The Easterseals Nebraska BRIDGE Program facilitates employment opportunities for youth ages 14-21 who have diagnoses of intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (ID/DD), and reside in Douglas, Sarpy, Dodge, Washington, or Cass county.
“Thank you to the Karnett Trust for supporting this meaningful program,” said Jamie Summerfelt, President and CEO of Visiting Nurse Association and Easterseals Nebraska. “Many lives will be positively impacted by this grant. Our BRIDGE program is a much-needed resource to help individuals reach self-sufficiency through employment opportunities.”
Many young adults living with disabilities at risk of living in poverty and are interested in pursuing employment but are fearful and often times have misinformation and misconceptions about the impacts earned income could have on their cash and medical benefits. The rules governing these programs are complex and affect each individual differently depending on their circumstances.
BRIDGE Program staff provide education to these individuals, their caregivers, and support staff assisting them to make informed choices about their continued education and employment, guidance on available state and federal work incentives, and benefits application assistance & planning services.