Disability Grants To Help Quadriplegic Dominic Gain Independence With Housing
by Dominic Bergfield
(Anabel, Missouri, USA)
My name is Dominic Bergfield. I am nearly 20 years old and on Disability. I live with my family, which includes four siblings and my parents.
I currently live in Anabel, Missouri. I have lived there all my life and have moved once, but my second home is only located about 200 feet from my old house.
My home is 3000 square feet, which seems big, but is actually very cramped for such a large family.
The house was built improperly, so various parts of it are in disrepair. The floors are uneven and I am unable to use my bathroom at all.Disability Issues
I am a quadriplegic, which means I don't have movement or feeling from my neck down.
I am on a ventilator because I don't have enough diaphragm movement to produce my own air.
I also have osteopenia and a dislocated shoulder that the doctors refuse to fix because they say that it will just become dislocated again.
I have scoliosis, so the curvature of my spine causes my arm to hang and become dislocated.
My disability started one month after my fourth birthday. I was involved in an accident where my father accidentally backed over me with his truck.
My paralysis was gradual, and my other ailments are a result of my paralysis.
Due to my disability, I have extremely few opportunities for work.
I cannot drive myself, so I am forced to rely on my parents for transportation. Unfortunately, between work and children they seldom have the chance to take me anywhere.
I take 10 different medications multiple times throughout the day, which adds up to about 19 pills per day.
The cost of medications quickly rises when I go through so many so quickly.
I'm in college, which requires a lot of adaptive technology. I use Dragon NaturallySpeaking and a TrackerPro to do my schoolwork.
If either of these machines were to break, I would have difficulty rounding up the funds to fix them or replace them in a short window of time.Income Efforts
I am unable to find many opportunities for work, but I do survive on Disability. I receive $498 a month, which is not the full amount because I don't receive food stamps.
Despite having very little income, I don't receive food stamps because my parents' income prevents me from getting it.
I have a small amount of money from a fundraiser that I did several years ago, but it is mainly reserved for emergency technology purchases, like if something were to break down. That money is not large enough to live on, and would only barely cover an emergency expense.Specific Needs
The most important thing to me in my life right now is to get a home for the first time and gain a semblance of independence. I am nearly 20 years old and because of my disability, have never known true independence.
My Disability is not enough to provide me money to secure a down payment for a house, or to even get close to the cost of the house.
My Disability would be unable to cover the cost of my utilities, mortgage, and still allow me to buy groceries and clothe myself.
It would significantly improve my life if my Disability were to be increased or if I were to receive food stamps.
Receiving food stamps would increase my Disability and would ease some of the financial pressure of getting a house.
Additionally, I would love to have a wheelchair accessible van. My current one is in horrible disrepair and the loan for it drastically drains my family of money, which indirectly affects me.
Getting a new van would allow my family to sell the other one, which would provide me with additional money to work towards a home.Business Idea
I am an author. I have published two books and written the third, but I do not receive any sales. I don't have the money to go about marketing or the knowledge, so I don't have any projected sales for my books. I sell my books for $20 apiece and it costs $800 to print 100 copies.
To turn this around, I would need financing to cover marketing costs in order to get publicity for my books. My first book sold close to 200 copies in around a month's time. All of these sales were almost exclusively in my hometown. I believe that with better publicity I could continue that success.