Sandy Hook School Support Fund

What is the Collaborative Recovery Fund?

The Collaborative Recovery Fund, administered by the Newtown-Sandy Hook Community Foundation, provides financial assistance for mental health treatments to victims families, SHS students and their families, SHS employees and their families, and emergency responders and their families who suffered trauma because of the tragedy at Sandy Hook School on 12/14/12.

Who is Eligible?

Victim Family Members: Surviving parents, children, siblings (minor and adult), grandparents, grandchildren, and spouses/significant others of homicide victims are eligible for financial assistance for qualified expenses.

Immediate Eyewitness Survivors: The 12 immediate surviving eyewitness students and 2 wounded staff members. Parents, siblings, spouses/ significant others, and children of survivor eyewitnesses are eligible for financial assistance for qualified expenses.

SHS Students: who were enrolled in the school on 12/14/12

SHS Staff: who were employed at SHS on 12/14/12 or substituting in the building on 12/14/12

Emergency Responders: who were called to either crime scene in an official capacity or who were performing duties related to the tragedy on 12/14/12 or 12/15/12

SHS Student Parents and Immediate Family Members

Immediate Family Members of Staff who were employed at SHS on 12/14/12 or substituting in the building on that day

Immediate Family Members of Emergency responders who were called to either crime scene in an official capacity or who were performing duties related to the tragedy on 12/14 or 12/15

What is covered and how much assistance can I receive?

Assistance with out of pocket mental health expenses, whether or not they are covered by insurance, that are utilized specifically due to the tragedy on 12/14/12. This may include services provided by a licensed mental health professional such as; cognitive therapy, expressive therapies (art, music, play), EMDR, EFT/ Tapping, equine assisted psychotherapy, Brainspotting, Neurofeedback, and prescriptions.

SHS Students who were enrolled in the school on 12/14/12, SHS Staff who were employed at SHS on 12/14/12 or substituting in the building on 12/14/12, and Emergency Responders who were called to either crime scene in an official capacity or who were performing duties related to the tragedy on 12/14/12 or 12/15/12 have an Individual Cap of $1,500 per calendar year and can be considered for additional support.


 

SHS Student Parents and Immediate Family Members, Immediate Family Members of Staff who were employed at SHS on 12/14/12 or substituting in the building on that day, Immediate Family Members of Emergency responders who were called to either crime scene in an official capacity or who were performing duties related to the tragedy on 12/14 or 12/15 have a family cap of $1,500 for the 2021 and 2022 calendar year.

 

What documentation must I provide to have eligible expenses paid?

Itemized bills and/or Explanation of Benefits (EOB) that have your name, dates of service(s), the amount owed or paid, proof of payment if paid, the providers’ name and billing address. Photocopies of checks will not be accepted.

For medication (Rx) reimbursement, a copy of the Rx and a receipt will need to be submitted.

Preexisting conditions are not covered and insurance must be the first method of payment for any services, as applicable.

After insurance, the Foundation can cover up to $150, $175, $200 per hour depending on your providers credentials (i.e. LCSWs, LMFTs, LCPs), psychologists, and psychiatrists. This includes EMDR, EFT/Tapping, and Equine Assisted Therapy. Please note these are above what is considered reasonable and customary by insurance companies). 

All documentation will need to be submitted to the Foundation within 30 days from the date of service. In order to preserve funds and adhere to the highest standards of accounting, the Foundation will have to close out the year by December 31st. If the Foundation receives invoices after December 31, 2022, the transaction will go towards your 2023 cap.

Where should I submit the information?

All information should be sent via email to lconnell@nshcf.org.

 

How long does it take to process my reimbursement?

The Foundation implemented an electronic payment method in 2021. This method guarantees that all reimbursements will:

  • be safely deposited into your account within 5 days
  • minimize lost checks
  • provide you with detailed information pertaining to your reimbursement

 

The Foundation will still process reimbursements by check, although this method will take place bi-monthly beginning January 1, 2022.

 

How do I enroll to receive my reimbursements electronically?

Contact Lucie Connell at lconnell@nshcf.org or (203) 461-2233. You will need to provide your Account Number, Routing Number, and Contact Phone Number.

 

Please keep in mind that funds are not payouts to individuals. The limits are the most that the funds are able to contribute towards individual care at this time.  Individuals who do not use the amount they are eligible for are not entitled to roll it forward into future years, receive a direct payment, or ‘give’ their amount to someone else. There are a finite amount of resources remaining and the limits have been determined based on average utilization and funds available in order to be as equitable as possible. It is expected that support will be available in future years but amounts may vary.

 

The Fund is the final payor after utilization of insurance and therefore we must receive verification of what is or is not being covered by your insurance. Even if your provider does not take insurance, you may have out of network benefits that we need to be able to determine before making payments. Please contact the Foundation if you need assistance submitting to your insurance for out of network benefits.  

Office of Victim Services (OVS)

Students enrolled at SHS on 12/14 also have benefits from the Office of Victim Services (OVS) that can be   accessed if limits are reached. OVS can be reached at 888-286-7347.   

What if I have extenuating circumstances and/or financial hardships and still need assistance once my limit has been reached?

For individuals with extenuating circumstances or financial hardships, a review process is in place through the Foundation to consider additional support once limits have been met Cases will be reviewed by a small subset of our Distribution Committee. Inquiries should be directed to Lucie Connell, Executive  Director of the Foundation at lconnell@nshcf.org or 203-461-2233.