Monday, November 5, 2012

Help a special needs mom and her son hit by Sandy

Kim Taylor is a single mom to Max, who has Down syndrome and turns 3 next month; she blogs at Entirely True Adventures of Maxwell Bean. They live on the Jersey Shore. Their home is OK, if soggy, and in that way they're lucky. But Hurricane Sandy destroyed their car, a Kia Optima, which is a serious loss for them. Kim's in nursing school and works, and also uses her car to transport Max to school, doctor appointments and daily therapy. "We evacuated and moved the car higher but during the storm the water rushed through the houses and cars of my area, approximately three feet deep," she told me. "We had no idea the water would get that high."  

If you have a kid with special needs, you know how important therapy sessions are. Little Max has missed his daily speech/occupational/physical therapies because Kim can't get him to them. She also needs to get Max to weekly medical appointments for which, she says, "we'll be negotiating borrowed rides."

I've put together a fundraiser to help Kim out. She didn't ask for it; in fact, she said if there's anyone I knew more in need to help them first. Like many of you, I've donated to some non-profits—American Red Cross Disaster Relief, the Disaster Relief Fund of The Arc | For People With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and Save The Children's Hurricane Sandy Children in Emergency Fund. These groups are helping people in far more dire straits than Kim is in. But as a special needs mom, my heart goes out to her.

Raising money to give Kim a jump-start on buying another car seems like something totally do-able, if we all get together and give.

Will you join me in helping out Kim and her Max?

Click here to go to the fundraiser page; I've kicked it off with a donation. The site doesn't charge a fee and so all of your contributions, minus a small PayPal fee, will go to Kim.

No donation is too small—$3, $5, $10, $20, it'll all add up. So please, pitch in. For this kid's sake.

If you have a child or family member with special needs affected by Sandy, or know of one, see this list of resources.


  1. I remember that after Katrina, it was difficult to find used card that hadn't been flooded. Some car salespeople were not very honest about the situation, either. Just a warning to be careful and be sure to get a good, honest inspection of any car that you might be buying in the next couple of months. The issue was that the cars had been repaired to look cosmetically fine, but the saltwater had damaged the electronics and there was mold growing in hidden parts of the cars.

  2. Is there a reason why her car insurance wouldn't pay for this?

  3. Hi Anonymous, Thanks for your comment.

    My car was older, but was in good condition and had surprisingly little problems.

    If the claim goes through in approximately a month, the amount the car is technically worth is very little, and definitely not enough to cover a car that is reliable for all the driving we need to do.

  4. Done and done! Thanks for the opportunity!

  5. Zach, just heard on the radio yesterday that car fax are checking for flood cars for free

  6. Just did! Blessings to them!

  7. Thank you for sharing. I work in the schools with kids with special needs and it is imperative that children receive their needed services. My thoughts are with this family and others impacted by this event. Thank you for posting and opening peoples eyes to the different types of impacts that are occurring due to the storms.

  8. And to echo the part about insurance - insurance will only cover the current value of the car, which, unless it was brand new, is probably not much. Kelly Blue Book values are not always followed either. I had an accident in my last car, which *almost* totaled it. I was lucky enough that the mechanic made the repair cost just within the limit of what insurance would cover - otherwise, I would've gotten the car's value - which wouldn't have paid for a new car - barely more than a down payment.
    Going to donate now.

  9. I would just like to say, you guys ROCK—for the contributions and the wise advice. Today, Kim and Max were again evacuated from their homes because of the Nor'easter. I am really grateful we'll be able to help them get back on their feet once the weather settles down.

  10. Has she filed a claim with FEMA and her car insurance? Even if its a small amount it will help with the car payment.

    Quite a few dealerships in Monmouth & Ocean county are helping with car replacements for locals who lost their vehicles. I know Jim Curley Kia, the Lester Glen Group are two auto groups that may be able to assist with a deal on a new car. (Some of these dealerships were not directly affected by flooding so their cars are safe from water damage. I know it is highly unlikely they will donate a car but they may have some matching funds to reduce the overall cost.

    Personally I'm working on trying to scratch up enough funds to replace my groceries. I was fortunate enough to have an instinct to move my car at 3PM Monday building was flooded by 8 inches inside and nearly 3feet in the street and lot...

    1. Gina, I know Kim filed with her insurance co. and guessing she did so with FEMA, too.

  11. Great job, Ellen! Off to go donate to this worthy cause!


Thanks for sharing!

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