Parent To Parent of NYS

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Parent Matching Program

What is Parent to Parent Matching?

Parent to parent support offers a parent of a person with a developmental disability or special health care need the opportunity to be connected one-to-one with another parent who knows first-hand about the feelings and realities that come with having a family member with a disability or chronic illness. Through the one-to-one match the experienced support parent provides emotional support to the referral parent and assists them in finding information and resources. Research on parent to parent programs indicates:

  • Parent to Parent support increases parents’ sense of being able to cope.
  • Parent to Parent support increases parents’ acceptance of their situation.
  • Parent to Parent helps parents make progress on the need they present when they first contact a Parent to Parent program.
  • Over 80% of parents find Parent to Parent support to be helpful.

Parents are matched, based on their request, with a trained Support Parent who has a child with a similar disability, chronic illness, health care concern or to help with parenting issues. Over 1200 parents have entered our statewide support parent network.

Parents and other primary family caregivers are offered the opportunity to connect one-to-one with a parent or caregiver of an individual with the same of similar disability or special health care need - someone who has "been there".

"There is nothing worse for the parent of a special needs child than to feel like you are alone dealing with an issue. Whether you're standing in the middle of your living room as the EMS people are asking question after question as your holding your child during a Grand Mal seizure or you're sitting in the emergency room on New Year's Eve and watching the clock strike twelve as the ER doctor is asking if you have a DNR because your son has stopped breathing during a seizure. Those are the times that you feel alone knowing that outside the doors of that hospital the world continues and at that moment you feel like no one can relate to you. No parent should feel that way. They should know that ….. there is someone there that will hold their hand, or listen to them on the phone." - D.G.

If you live in New York State and would like to be matched with a Support Parent, you can request a match through this website or by contacting your Regional Office.

For more information about Support Parents:


Download the PDF for more information