What type of break are we talking about? A break can be many things, a holiday, a regular couple of hours for yourself, or a one-off moment to recoup.
The Scottish Government says that short breaks should provide:
- Opportunities to experience new things
- Opportunities to maintain friendships
- Time to rest and recharge batteries
- Time for personal interests, leisure or cultural activities
You should decide what will help you. It may be a break away from the person you care for, or it may be a break away from home together, or it may be buying an item that allows you to pursue a hobby.
If you feel that you need help with your caring routine then you could contact your local authority. They will need to assess if providing you with support is the best option. If so, there are 4 ways that you can have the support.
- Direct payment to you – This means that you will be provided with money to buy the services or items that help you.
- You direct the available support – This means that you tell the local authority which services or items they should buy on your behalf.
- The local authority arranges support for you – This means the local authority decides which support is best for you.
- Mix and match – You can combine any of the options above. For instance, you may choose to receive support every week, but ‘save’ a small amount of that support for a longer break later that year.
If, as a carer, you are provided with support after you have been assessed then it must be provided free of charge. You can pay for additional support if you wish to.
Your carer’s centre can help you get support or you can see how some people have been creative with the support they receive here.
The Scottish Government has created a website designed to be a one-stop-shop for information about Self-directed Support for people who use social care services and health and social care professionals. You can visit it at www.selfdirectedsupportscotland.org.uk/