Short breaks for disabled children and young people and their carers
Short breaks provide opportunities for disabled children and young people to have enjoyable social experiences as well as providing a valuable break for their parents or carers. Short breaks can enhance social development and reduce social isolation. Short breaks include day, evening, overnight or weekend activities and take place in the child's own home, the home of a carer, a residential or community setting.
We regularly consult with disabled children and young people and their parents and carers to ensure that services meet their needs.
Provision of short term breaks
Provision of short breaks should be based on an assessment of the whole family, to determine both their personal and social needs. Short breaks should occur on a regular and planned basis and should be part of an integrated programme of support which is regularly reviewed. If someone is interested in being assessed for short breaks a CAF (Common Assessment Framework) referral needs to be completed for the Disabled Children's Team. A social worker then completes an assessment to decide if short breaks will be provided.
We have a duty to provide breaks from caring to assist parents and others who provide care for disabled children and young people to continue to do so, or do so more effectively. Breaks should be provided to those for whom a break from their caring responsibilities will improve the quality of the care they provide, as well as for those who may be struggling to care for disabled children. In order to meet this duty, a Local Offer is being made to disabled children and young people eligible for a specialist short break. This offer provides a choice for parents and carers from a range of different services.
You can find out more in our statement of Short Break Service document.