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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 via the Children’s Information Services and SEND Local Offer Website.

This is the Families First Information Service.

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

FLAG: Runs every Saturday morning with additional activities during the school holidays. Sessions are £10 per session or £20 if it is a day trip. Parents/carers can self-refer.

UPDATE: Flag are currently not operating.
Read more about Flag Grimsby.

Gravity Red: provide group activity sessions as well as a befriending service and is £15 per session.

Read more about Gravity Red Inspires.

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

  • Information and advice
  • Signposting to other services
  • Case leader calls
  • Specialist advice-benefits ,housing, finance
  • Counselling
  • Befrienders
  • Training
  • Parents groups
  • Activities
  • ‘Angels‘ a group supporting carers who are looking after someone with addiction
  • Dedicated substance and Alcohol worker
  • Bereavement support
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • Choir
  • Sensory holistic activities

Learn more about Carers Support Centre North East Lincolnshire.

Targeted services are aimed at children and young people with Disabilities and Special Educational Needs and are more targeted support to access universal service provision or more targeted provision. This group of children and young people may need groups and services that are specifically designed to meet their needs.

Some of these services are targeted solely for disabled children and young people and may also have special educational needs. You do not need to have a personal budget to access these services or for the package to be agreed through the Children’s Resource Panel.

Targeted short breaks services may include:

  • Group based services provided through universal services with additional support
  • Short breaks Team (provides short breaks activities)
  • Group based services that are commissioned to provide a more targeted service for children and young people with disabilities and/or special educational need
  • One to one support through outreach provision or in the home
  • Personal budget could be used to buy in the targeted short breaks provision
  • Young Carers service provides support to brothers and sisters of children and young people with disabilities and / or specialist educational needs
  • Read more about the Young Carers Service.

Specialist Services are services for children and young people with disabilities and/or special educational needs.  These services must be commissioned following a social care assessment and are part of an individual support or Education, Health and Social Care Plan. They are specialist services tailored to meet the individual needs of a child or young person.

Specialist short breaks services may include:

  • Group based services
  • One to one support
  • Personal budget is a mechanism for delivery of funding to commission the provision
  • Overnight short breaks at Cromwell House, or St Andrews Hospice

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 support required for the parent and/or assessment of child/young person will 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 the Local Offer
  • Early Help Services
  • Early Years Services
  • Short breaks (overnight stays) that can either be provided by a Local Authority Resource – Cromwell House or St Andrews Hospice
  • 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 (


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.

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