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Short Breaks

Our vision in North East Lincolnshire is to provide disabled children and young people, with opportunities and experiences that help achieve positive outcomes for them.

By providing disabled children and young people with such opportunities, it is our aim to support parents in their role as primary carers and give them breaks to assist them to look after themselves and their wider family.

We aim to ensure that families of disabled children have the support they need to live ‘ordinary lives’ as a matter of course.

It is our aim that short breaks will contribute to keeping disabled children safe and healthy, enabling them to enjoy new activities, make friends, and have new learning opportunities, as well as preparing teenagers for adulthood.

Not all families need the same level of support to use these. The levels of short breaks are described below.

These short breaks are for all children and young people with and without additional needs allowing them to take part in fun activities together. This could include going to a youth club, after school club or going to Brownies or Scouts.

Universal services are provided or routinely available to children, young people, and their families. Children and young people with SEND can access these services if they require little or no support or where additional support and training has already been provided to staff. These services can be found through Families First Information Service and SEND Local Offer Website.

The Families First Information Service post regular updates of local activities. Check their Facebook: Families First | Cleethorpes | Facebook.

Check the Days Out page for resources specific to SEND. NELC SEND Local Offer | Days Out (

Families can access most of these services directly and without a referral from social care or special educational needs teams.

Universal short breaks may include:

  • Local youth groups
  • Group based, drama, community, and sports activities
  • Play schemes
  • After school clubs

Carers Centre: A range of funded sessions and support available for parents and carers of children who have disabilities and or special educational needs.

Learn more about Carers Support Centre North East Lincolnshire.

Targeted services are aimed at children and young people with SEND.

They are tailored to children and young people with SEND. Any child with SEND can access them.

Specialist Services are services for children and young people with disabilities and/or special educational needs whose needs cannot be met through universal and targeted services.

If your child’s needs cannot be met through universal and targeted services children’s social care will complete an assessment to look at how their needs can be best met.

Specialist short breaks services may include:

  • Group based activities
  • One to one support
  • It may be through a direct payment
  • Overnight short breaks

How these services can be accessed

A parent/carer or multi agency partner can request an assessment for any child/young person, 0 – 18 years, who meets the criteria for Children with Disabilities and lives in North East Lincolnshire via NELC Children’s Integrated Front Door, 01472 326292 option 2.

Referrals received in the Integrated Front Door will also provide advice and guidance around the local offer available and consider Early Help or Early Years Services. However, for children with a disability and parenting or a safeguarding concern, these referrals would be directed to the Children’s Disability Service. 

Following the acceptance of the referral to the Children with Disabilities Service an assessment of need will be undertaken and this will determine how best needs are to be met.

This assessment will also consider the parent carers’ needs.

The assessment will be be completed by a Social Worker within 45 days of receipt. 

Where the assessment concludes that services are required, it may recommend one or more of the following:

  • Advice and guidance around access to our local offer
  • Early Help Services
  • Early Years Services
  • Short breaks (overnight stays)
  • Direct Payments so that the parents can source their own provider of support
  • Education, Health & Care Plan jointly with Health and Education

All local authorities are required to hold a register of disabled children and young people. Joining the register helps inform the Council of the needs of children and young people in NE Lincs.

Further information about the register can be found here.

All families in NE Lincs who join the register are eligible for a free Max Card.

Find out more about Max Cards here NELC SEND Local Offer | Max cards (


We are currently reviewing the Short Breaks provision with the Local Authority Commissioning Team.

Some of the content of this document references provision that we no longer use. The Short Breaks Statement is under review and the document be updated in line with this work. Read the Short Breaks Statement (Word, 106 KB) which includes more information like what parents said in our consultation and how we review and improve our short break offer.