A small nonprofit organization is offering limited grants for in-home care to people with physical disabilities. The next quality-of-life grant application deadline is November 1, 2012.
CMMS Deshae Lott Ministries, a Louisiana-based nonprofit, is in its third year of offering scholarships and grants to people with physical disabilities. Deshae Lott, a Bossier City college professor and minister with limb-girdle muscular dystrophy (LGMD), founded the organization in 2007.
The amounts offered for the quality-of-life grants are generally modest — $250 to $500 — to avoid jeopardizing benefits and services that people currently receive, or are on waiting lists to receive.
|College professor and minister Deshae Lott has limb-girdle muscular dystrophy (LGMD), requiring her to use a wheelchair and a ventilator. Her ministry’s outreach program offers financial aid and scholarships to people with severe disabilities.|
A recent recipient of a Lott Ministries quality-of-life grant is Ida Tranks, of Charlotte, N.C., who has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). She lives with her 15-year-old grandson and has no other family member to provide assistance. Awarded $500, Tranks will use the money to hire an in-home female caregiver to help her with bathing and dressing.
Money toward graduate degrees
The organization also awards a number of academic scholarships each year. Because financial aid specifically for graduate students with disabilities is often lacking, Lott, who holds a Ph.D. in English, established the scholarship program to help individuals with disabilities who want to pursue higher education beyond the bachelor’s degree level.
A recent recipient of a $1,500 Lott Ministries scholarship is Claire Abraham, who has type 2 spinal muscular atrophy. Abraham is seeking a Master of Science in Information from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. The money will be used to help her live independently on campus.
Deadlines and information
Applications for quality-of-life grants are due by May 1 and November 1 each year. Guidelines and an application form are available at deshae.org/cmms/qlgrant.pdf.
Applications for academic scholarships are due by July 1 each year. Guidelines and an application form are available at deshae.org/cmms/scholar.pdf.
Although CMMS Deshae Lott Ministries has a Christian orientation, Lott stresses that the organization's participants come from various faith backgrounds, and the awards are nondenominational and nonsectarian. Funding for the scholarships and grants comes from donations from people wishing to support the outreach program.