Colorado Respite Care Program Recipient of 2015 Colorado Collaboration Award

Collaborative receives $50,000 to help 843,000 families caring for disabled, chronically ill and elderly

DENVER, COLO. (Sept. 21, 2015) – Colorado Respite Care Program is the recipient of the 2015 Colorado Collaboration Award, a $50,000 prize presented by a group of foundations and corporate funders to an outstanding nonprofit collaboration.

Colorado Respite Care Program

is a powerful statewide collaboration that consists of hundreds of caregivers, care receivers, disability agencies and civic agencies working together to champion the needs of family caregivers. It represents Colorado’s 843,000 family caregivers caring for youth and adults who are disabled, elderly or chronically ill.

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“The mission of the Colorado Respite Care Program is to increase respite supports and resources for the huge number of caregivers providing care for loved ones at home. Our network is helping to reduce caregiver stress, strengthen families and keep individuals with special needs living at home,” says Easter Seals Colorado President & CEO Lynn Robinson, a lead agency for Colorado Respite Care Program.

The program initially formed in 2005 under the umbrella of Colorado Respite Coalition. In 2010, the coalition aligned with Colorado State Unit on Aging, Easter Seals Colorado. Colorado Respite Coalition and Chronic Care Collaborative to create the Colorado Respite Care Program. As you can see, this is not some random program that just people decided to make for taking money. There is a history of this program and it is quite an interesting one actually. During all those years, there was a lot of interesting things that happened. Whenever there is a new way that we can help other people, especially families we want to be there because we have very innovative ideas and a lot of experience behind us. The world needs a program like this that is dedicated to helping out the youth and adults who are disabled as well as elderly or ill people.

There needs to be a program or an organization. That will take care of the youth because they are the future of this world. Without them, and their help, the world will collapse. So we need to help them while we can, especially the ones who are in desperate need of help. There are quite a lot of people who are forced to work a regular job even if they are not able to do it because of their state. Some people who have special needs and rely on other people just to get to the next day are not able to be in their homes.

Since the program’s inception it has:

-awarded 47 grants to help underserved families providing respite care

-formed four regional coalitions to improve infrastructure in rural communities

-lobbied to increase state and federal funding for respite care

-trained more than 5,000 individuals

-expanded programs in small and large cities across the state

-increased awareness and understanding of caregiver needs

“The Colorado Collaboration Award recognizes the joint efforts of organizations working together to solve community problems more effectively than any one organization can do alone”. Says Colorado Nonprofit Association President and CEO Renny Fagan. “Colorado Respite Care Program demonstrates what multiple organizations can do when they come together, think strategically and act.”

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Colorado Respite Care Program lead partners include Colorado State Unit on Aging,

Easter Seals Colorado,

Colorado Respite Coalition,

Chronic Care Collaborative,

Western Slope Regional Respite Coalition, Southern Colorado Regional Respite Coalition, Summit County Regional Respite Coalition. And Northern Colorado Regional Respite Coalition.

“While it takes more effort for far-flung organizations like these to work together, they recognize it’s for a greater good”. Said Joanne Kelley, executive director of the Colorado Association of Funders. “The funders supporting the Collaboration Award intended for it to celebrate and support the nonprofit partnerships that are succeeding so that others can learn from them.”

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Members of the Colorado foundation and business communities reviewed multiple applications and selected Colorado Respite Care Program for this award. The following were selected as semi-finalists for the 2015 Colorado Collaboration Award.

-Finalist: Urban Advantage Metro Denver improves science literacy and reduces science achievement gaps among underserved middle school students by involving their entire support system including their teachers and families.

-Finalist: Grand County Meeting Milestones enhances parent education and ensures that all children in Grand County have a medical home and are screened using a standardized developmental screening tool three times by the age of three

-Finalist: The School Multidisciplinary Assessment Review Team (SMART) is a multi-agency collaborative that provides community-based, wrap-around care to La Plata County youth and their families who experience barriers to school attendance.

The Colorado Respite Care Program will be honored at the Colorado Nonprofit Association Fall Conference, “We Are Essential” on Oct. 29 where representatives plan to speak in detail about building this collaboration. To register, visit www.FallConference.org.

To learn more about the Colorado Respite Care Program, visit www.ColoradoRespiteCoalition.org.

To learn more about the Colorado Collaboration Award, visit www.coloradocollaboration.org.