Who We Are

The Tennessee Respite Coalition provides relief to families and caregivers from the extraordinary and intensive demands of providing ongoing care.


Our Mission

The Tennessee Respite Coalition’s mission is to enhance the quality of life for family caregivers through respite.

Our Purpose

The Tennessee Respite Coalition provides relief to families and caregivers from the extraordinary and intensive demands of providing ongoing care.


New to TNRespite.com?

Complete your profile by taking a quick survey to help us identify your needs by learning more about you.

Our Staff

Photo of Dr. Megan Schwalm
Dr. Megan Schwalm
Executive Director
Development Director
Annisha_Bell-3612 whiteBG (4)
Annisha Bell
Volunteer Program Manager
photo of Jack Read
Jack Read
Respite Voucher Manager
Virginia Holmes
Program Assistant
Breion Dixon
Outreach Program Manager
Health Educator
Bilingual Respite Coordinator

Board of Directors

Erika Thomas Headshot-Gray Background LARGE
Erika Thomas
Tracey Washington
April Headshot
April Jackson
Carli Anderson
Carli Anderson
Joyce Horton Photo (1)
Joyce Horton
Rachel Fields
Rachel Fields
Susan Carr


“Respite has helped me keep my sanity and allowed my family to have balance again. ”
Mary Scott
Thursday, August 31, 2017
“Respite made me a better caregiver!”
John Borthwick
“Respite has given me time to focus on me and not feel guilty about it. The TRC gives me the choice to choose who I want to care for my mother and how I want to use my respite.”
Ryan King
Thursday, August 31, 2017

Need Help?

Call our Helpline

We can help provide assistance to those in need. Simply reach out to us through our helpline number. We are available during business hours.

(615) 269-8687

Our History

In 1996, a small group of individuals interested in respite met to discuss the status of respite in Tennessee. They called themselves the Tennessee Respite Coalition and set goals of raising respite awareness and increasing respite services in Tennessee. This group received funding to further their efforts, which included developing a universal access point for respite and organizing Respite Awareness Days at the state Capitol. By 2000, the work had expanded to create a need for a full-time coordinator. At this time, the organization operated from the Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services. As the organization evolved, the TRC transformed into an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit, which allowed it to receive grants and donations to support respite services. In 2006, Congress passed the Lifespan Respite Act. Three years later, Tennessee was one of the first seven states to receive a three-year Lifespan Respite grant. Through its work, the TRC has gained national presence and developed connections with respite leaders across the country. Today, the original goals set by that small group of volunteers in 1996 still remain at the heart of the TRC’s mission to enhance the quality of life for caregivers throughout Tennessee.

Founders Society

The Tennessee Respite Coalition Founder’s Society is our special way to recognize people, businesses and organizations who have helped support the TRC. Award recipients have given their time, talent and support to allow the TRC to continue to grow and serve more caregivers across the state. Each year, past winners participate in nominating new recipients.

AccountNetInc!, Farris Mathews, Andy Daniels, Greater Nashville Regional Council Area Agency on Aging, Dr. Louise Barnes, Mary Ann Lass, Paula Haynes and Kara Jamison
West End Discount Liquors & Wine, Jamie Compton, Tenneessee Department of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, Vickie Harden, Susan Jordan, Nathan and Melissa Dawson
Green Bank, Alan Bond, Kim Burley, Jeff Rooks, Stephen Aleman, American Parkinson Disease Association, Caregiver Relief Program of Bedford County, Tennessee Commission on Aging and Disability, Jeremy Pharr, Stephanie Deason, Edwin Duffessy, Bob Gronowski
AtnipCPA, Mary Ann Lass, Peterson for Parkinson’s Foundation, Kelly Tipler, Sidney Nance