Short breaks for disabled children and young people
Short breaks provide disabled children and young people with an opportunity to spend time away from their parents or primary carers, relaxing, having fun with their friends, experiencing the same range of activities and environments as non-disabled children and young people. Short breaks also provide parents and carers with a "break" from their caring responsibilities, giving them a chance to rest, spend time with partners and other children.
Short breaks can include day, evening, overnight, weekend and holiday activities. Making short breaks possible can range from supporting children and young people to join children's activities and services in their communities to providing specialist services, or a mixture of both.
Who can get short breaks? The Gloucestershire Offer
All parents and children need breaks, whether they are disabled or not. Our approach has been to work in partnership with parents and organisations in Gloucestershire to make it much more 'ordinary' for disabled children and young people to go to clubs and activities in their own neighbourhoods, with whatever support they need. We want all organisations that provide activities and clubs to be confident to welcome disabled children.
How can you get a short break?
More and more disabled children can have a break without needing an assessment by asking a local club, child minder or activity provider. If the child care or activity provider needs some additional support to welcome your child they can contact one of our inclusion coordinators who can work with them, you and your child, they can also access training to help them to include disabled children in their setting.
What is an assessment?
An 'assessment' is when a professional talks with you about your child's and family's strengths and supports, and any concerns you have, or gaps in your support. All disabled children are entitled to an assessment of their social care needs, leading to a support plan to meet any assessed needs. Any agreed need for short breaks will be included in your assessment and plan.
If you want to ask for an assessment, contact the children's help desk on 01452 426565.