In this section we have listed some of the main carer support organisations and organisations that offer advice on specific conditions or disabilities. Many of these organisations will have information on short breaks and respite services and we suggest that you use their search facility to locate this. These websites may also be able to direct you to local support groups.
If you would like to suggest a link to an organisation please use our online form - click here
Alzheimer Scotland helps people with dementia, their carers and families. Our members include carers, relatives, people with dementia, professionals, groups and organisations. From this site you can access information about local support services which may be able to offer short break opportunities.
"We are the UK’s leading Children’s Charity and have over 25 years providing quality foster care in Scotland. We offer unbeatable support and training for carers, with career progression and competitive benefits. We are actively seeking to recruit new carers to become long term, bridge and short break carers. We are dedicated to improving children’s lives."
Carers Scotland is the Scottish national office of Carers UK.
Childrens Hospice Association Scotland
Rachel House, Scotland's first children's hospice opened in 1996, provides:
- specialist palliative support through respite care and emergency care for children with life limiting, life threatening and terminal conditions.
- regular short term breaks for children and their families.
- terminal care and bereavement counselling.
- friendship, information, advice and practical support for families, with help available in their own homes at times of special stress.
Coalition of Carers in Scotland (COCIS)
The Coalition is a network or alliance of over 80 autonomous local carer-led groups, centres and projects. Members of the Coalition meet quarterly to share information and debate issues.
"Capability Scotland is the leading Scottish disability organisation and has nearly 60 years experience of providing services to disabled people of all ages in Scotland.
The organisation was launched in 1946 by a group of committed parents and professionals. The first service, Westerlea School for children with cerebral palsy, opened in December that year.
From our original purpose of supporting people with cerebral palsy, we have developed to support children, young people and adults with a range of disabilities. Today we are Scotland's leading disability organisation providing a diverse range of services including community living, day and residential services, employment, respite/short breaks, therapy, education and learning, family support and activities."
Contact a Family
"Contact a Family is a UK-wide charity providing advice, information and support to the parents of all disabled children - no matter what their health condition. We also enable parents to get in contact with other families, both on a local and national basis. Each year we reach at least 250,000 families."
Counselling Directory provides a support network of counsellors, allowing those in need to find a counsellor in their area and appropriate for their needs. The directory contains information on many different types of distress, as well as articles, news, and events.
Crossroads Caring Scotland
"Crossroads (Scotland) is the national organisation established in 1978 to develop local services for Carers throughout Scotland. There are now 48 local schemes providing over 1 million hours of care and short breaks for Scotland's Carers."
ENABLE Scotland campaigns for a better life for children and adults with learning disabilities and support them and their families to live, work and take part in their communities.
Enable also run a range of flexible person-centred services.
Leonard Cheshire operates over 150 services in the UK, each tailored to the needs of disabled people, enabling them to live as independently as possible. Our aim is to enable disabled people to get on with their own lives, whether they need intensive support, respite care, or just a few hours support each week in their own homes
Long Term Conditions Alliance Scotland
The LTCAS exists to support people with long term conditions to enjoy, not endure, full and positive lives - lives free from discrimination and supported by high quality services. Their work includes: campaigning and influencing policy, supporting and improving practice, supporting voluntary and community organisations & tackling health inequalities.
National Autistic Society
"The National Autistic Society exists to champion the rights and interests of all people with autism and to ensure that they and their families receive quality services appropriate to their needs. The website includes information about autism and Asperger syndrome, the NAS and its services and activities. The NAS also provides information on Autism specific holidays."
One Parent Families Scotland
One Parent Families Scotland works to ensure that all families, particularly those headed by a lone parent, have the support, information and confidence needed to play a full part in Scotland's economic and social life. OPFS provides vital childcare services - allowing parents respite and time to work, learn, and develop their skills.
Parkinson's Disease Society
The Parkinson's Disease Society is dedicated to supporting all people with Parkinson's, their families, friends and carers.
"Penumbra is a leading Scottish voluntary organisation working in the field of mental health.
We provide an extensive range of person-centred support services for adults and young people including residential respite care.
Since we opened our first supported accommodation project in 1985 we have based the development of our services on the rights of the people who use them to choice, dignity and participation in ordinary life. This philosophy has guided our growth over the past 18 years and we now provide a range of services located across Scotland."
Princess Royal Trust for Carers
"The Princess Royal Trust for Carers is the largest provider of comprehensive carers support services in the UK. Through its unique network of 122 independently managed Carers' Centres and interactive websites, Carers.org and YC Net (young carers website), The Trust currently provides quality information, advice and support services to almost a quarter of a million carers, including 13,000 young carers."
Scottish Society for Autism
The Scottish Society for Autism is a Scottish registered charity established in 1968 which works together with individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), their families, carers, and other organisations, agencies, and individuals in Scotland to:
- Provide and promote exemplary services and training in education, care, support and life opportunities for individuals of all ages with ASD;
- Influence policy and practice to ensure the best possible education, care, support and life opportunities for individuals of all ages with ASD;
- Raise public awareness about what ASD is, and how it affects the lives of individuals and families in Scotland.