About short breaks and respite
Short breaks are designed for people with a learning disability A learning disability is to do with the way someone's brain works. It makes it harder for someone to learn, understand or do things. and their families, to give them a change from their daily routine and to give parents and carers a break from the demands of their role.
Short breaks are incredibly important - caring, even for someone you love, can be an exhausting experience, which can leave you little time for yourself or other members of your family.
A good short break should be regular, reliable and frequent. It should also be flexible enough to fit in with your family's needs, and accessible Accessible means something is easy for people to use or join in with. For example: Accessible writing means the writing is easy to read and understand. in case of an emergency.
Where are short breaks services available?
We can provide support in the family home or in the community A community is the people and places in an area. . In some areas we also have building-based short breaks facilities. We can also enable individuals to take a short break away from home.
Can I access short breaks and respite services?
To find out if you are entitled to a short break, you should contact your local authority for an assessment An assessment is a way of finding out what help a person needs. When you have an assessment, you might have to go to a meeting or fill in a form. , or ask during your carer's assessment or the care assessment of the person you support.
You can also access short breaks and respite Respite is when a person goes somewhere for a few hours or days to have a break. People with a learning disability can have respite from their carers and family, and carers and family can have respite from the people they care for. services using a personal budget A budget is a plan where you look at how much money you have and how you will spend it. , or by paying with private funds.
If you have not received a short break, and feel like you can no longer cope, it is important to get help as quickly as possible - you can start by speaking to your GP, and any other professionals that have been working with you and your child.
The Learning Disability Helpline is our free help and advice line.
Our team can offer advice, information and discuss what support Mencap can offer tailored to your needs, in your area.
Find out more
Contact the Learning Disability Helpline to find out how we can support you:
Phone: 0808 808 1111 from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.