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Short Breaks

Enabling parents and carers to have a break, while disabled children and young people get the chance to do things that other children do.

Image of two girls on a small sail boat

Who is eligible for family and carer support services, such as short breaks?

Short Breaks are designed to support disabled children, young people and their families allowing children to experience new relationships, environments and positive activities whilst giving families a break from their caring role.  They are preventative services that form part of the support received by disabled children. 

There are a wide range of services to support families in bringing up disabled children and to help them achieve good outcomes dependant on the Eligibility Criteria

Applications for short breaks can be accessed by contact with a social worker (usually when the disability and/or family situation is complex) or supported by a Common Assessment completed by a relevant professional.  This is usually someone who knows your child well and is already working with them e.g. a portage worker, school nurse, health visitor or class teacher.  Within the Partnership there is a small team of Short Breaks Coordinators who can visit to discuss short breaks with you and your child and who are able to complete an assessment and arrange short breaks.

There is a range of short breaks, which you may be able to access depending on the needs and aspirations of your child.  These include: 

  • Direct Payments (which can fund a Personal Assistant or appropriate activities)
  • Personal Short Breaks - the Partnership has a contract with 4 agencies to provide a personal short breaks services in which your child can be supported in their home or out and about in the community.
  • A range of play and youth provision, both specialist and universal
  • Overnight family based care
  • Overnight short breaks unit - Cedar Lodge

If you are thinking of applying for short breaks, please get in touch using the contact details below, so we can discuss the options with you and advise on the best approach


Established in 1867, Barnardos continue to work with families to offer many services including short breaks for children...

South Thames Crossroads

Crossroads Care - The people parent carers turn to...


KIDS is a national charity that provides a range of services to disabled children and young people and their families.

The Children's Trust, Tadworth

The Children's Trust is a registered charity that provides a comprehensive range of services for children with multiple disabilities and complex health needs and those with an acquired brain injury who require rehabilitation.