Application Deadline Extended for Vaccine Access Funding for Eligible Centers for Independent Living

November 1, 2021- Kimberly Tissot of Able South Carolina and Richard Petty of ILRU in Houston announced today the Disability Vaccine Access Opportunities Center (DVAO Center) is extending the application deadline to November 19 at 12:00 Noon Eastern Time for applications for grant-based funding to support vaccination access for people with disabilities across the nation. Centers for independent living (CILs) that were not funded through the CARES Act and that were not previously recipients of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention funding are eligible to submit applications. This group of CILs includes centers funded through Part B of Title VII of the Rehabilitation Act (Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act) and/or CILs funded with state and local funding. Awards for up to $50,000 through the vaccine access opportunity program for individual CILs are anticipated.

Interested eligible CILs are encouraged to apply for funding by completing an online application by 12:00 pm (Noon) EDT on November 19, 2021, via the online application.

This funding is being made available to improve access to COVID-19 vaccines for people with disabilities by leveraging the support of a select group of centers for independent living. Examples of how CILs have supported vaccine uptake include the following: providing peer counseling about the benefits and importance of having vaccinations; assisting individuals to find an accessible location where they may secure vaccinations; holding vaccine events such as drive-up, in-vehicle vaccinations; working with local health departments to arrange in-home vaccinations for those unable to travel safely and providing education to local health departments and other agencies to improve awareness and affect meaningful change within those agencies to improve vaccine access for people with disabilities. 

Funded centers will be provided with technical assistance, training, and additional resources from the DVAO Center to support their vaccine efforts and projects for this grant. These resources include a monthly webinar with presentations from CDC Foundation and disability advocacy panelists, access to an online communication platform tool for participating centers, and free technical assistance to complete project needs. The Disability Vaccine Opportunity Access Center is a national center that will further vaccination access for people with disabilities. The prime recipient of the grant for this project is Able South Carolina, which as a center for independent living is a consumer-directed organization. ILRU, an organization managed and operated by people with disabilities, is the principal partner and contractor. The DVAO Center will support local disability-run centers for independent living to assist people with disabilities to have full access to the vaccines that fight COVID-19. Funding for this effort is provided by the CDC Foundation of Atlanta, GA.

See the Request for Application

The Disability Vaccine Access Opportunities Center is operated with grant funding from the CDC Foundation and awarded to Able SC, which will collaborate with ILRU. Funding for this effort is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award with 100 percent funded by CDC/HHS. The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by CDC/HHS, or the U.S. Government.

ABOUT ABLE SOUTH CAROLINA: Able SC is a change agent committed to fostering an equitable society that empowers individuals with disabilities to live fully engaged and self-directed lives. Able SC is an organization led by individuals with disabilities that challenges stereotypes and promotes disability rights and justice. To learn more about Able SC’s programs and services, visit

ABOUT INDEPENDENT LIVING RESEARCH UTILIZATION (ILRU): ILRU at TIRR Memorial Hermann, founded in 1977, has a long history of providing research, education, and consultation in the areas of independent living, home and community-based services, and the Americans with Disabilities Act. ILRU is operated by community living and disability law experts with disabilities. To learn more about ILRU, visit

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