Children with disabilities

If your child has a disability which significantly impacts on their day to day life, they may be eligible for support with personal care or other practical assistance from Children’s Social Care. 

Support from Children’s Social Care

Children’s Social Care may be able to support with things like

  • care at home,
  • aids and adaptations,
  • short breaks and holiday activities,
  • and financial help, for example, travel costs to hospital appointments. 

Many of these services are free, but local councils are entitled to charge, and so may ask for a contribution towards some services.

A social worker will talk to you about the needs of your child, and wider family, including yourself and others who may undertake caring responsibilities.  This is called a ‘needs assessment’ and will enable the social worker to determine what services your child and family may be entitled to receive.

The charity Contact for families with disabled children have useful information on the range of services provided by Children’s Social Care in relation to children with disabilities. 

Short Breaks

If your child does not need practical help at home, you may still be eligible for a short break.

‘Short breaks’ (also known as respite) give children and young people the chance to take part in activities and clubs that are educational and enjoyable, whilst also giving their Parent Carer a much needed break from caring. 

Many children and young people will be able to access ‘universal’ clubs and activities which are open to everyone. 

  • The Family Services Directory and Young Merton website provide details of the activities available in the borough of Merton.  Some of these activities are open to children and young people with special educational needs and disability (SEND). 
  • You can find a specific list of clubs and activities which support children with SEND on the Merton council website.  These do not require referral.

If your child’s needs can not be met by any of these activities then you can apply to the short breaks team to ask for your child’s needs to be assessed to enable them to access an individualized and specialist short break provision.  An application form can be found on this page on the Merton Council website.