In 2012, the Commonwealth of Virginia moved its Department of Aging into the Department of Rehabilitative Services (DRS) making it Department of Aging and Rehabilitative Services (DARS). In 2014, the Agency on Community Living (ACL), the federal overseeing and funding agency, was created and encompasses a wide range of previously separate disability agencies and aging. The first research project focused on the federal agency, ACL, and its distribution of power via its funding opportunities (or what we call grants). Owing to work experience, I was able to understand what these federal funding opportunities (grants) look like at the local and state levels. The first research project looked at the division of funding opportunities with regards to access to funds between disability and aging groups. Of the 24 funding opportunities, 22 are accessible to the aging population, 12 can be accessed by people with disabilities who are not over 60 years of age and two are disability specific. This distribution of funds makes some sense with the growing aging population but does not take into account that existing disability agencies who have access to half of the funds (or less) are also serving the same growing aging population with half of the funds because they were not created as a designated “aging” agency and provide services to individuals in the community based on need rather than label or age. This local and state competition for funding is the basis for the second research paper where the first gave an introduction to how power can be handed out in the form of funds from a federal agency (ACL).
Please see Research Paper at following link: