If you care for someone who has an illness or disability, you may be able to get help to take a short break.

A short break could be:

  • A couple of hours
  • Overnight
  • A weekend
  • A week or longer

The break can give you a rest and support you in your caring role. You can have a break together or separately.

Flexible respite

Most overnight respite has been unable to take place due to current circumstances brought about by COVID-19. To try to ensure that you continue to get a break from your caring role overnight respite budgets can used flexibly to provide other forms of respite, as long as this meet the needs for both you and the person that you are caring for.

The recent Falkirk and Clackmannanshire Carers Centre Survey showed that 78% of Carers in Falkirk that completed the survey, have not been able to have a break from their caring role during the lockdown period, therefore it is hoped that using overnight budgets in other ways will allow Carers to get a much needed break.

Some ideas might be purchasing technology, online classes/subscriptions, buying items (such as garden furniture, exercise bikes, fitness equipment) or even getting assistance to create a space to relax in the garden. The Carers Survey responses showed that the provision of a service (eg dog walking or gardening) and purchasing an item such as exercise equipment, gardening furniture were the most popular flexible respite options, however other ideas are welcome.

Creativity surrounding how breaks can be provided is crucial at this time so we are keen to hear from you. If you would like to find out more please contact the Short Breaks Bureau:

How do you get a short break?

You may be able to get help with arranging and paying for a short break.

To see if you can get help towards the cost, you will need an Adult Carer Support Plan (ACSP) or a Young Carer's Statement. You can find out how to get this by contacting your local social work office or Falkirk and Clackmannanshire Carers Centre. If the person you care for will need replacement care through illness or disability, they will need a social work assessment.

If you are eligible for support funded by the local authority, you can choose how to access that support using any of the 4 self-directed support options. The funding may be allocated either to you, for support you have been assessed as being eligible for, or to the cared-for person for support that meets their assessed needs and as a consequence provides a break to you.

It is important to check what the eligible support is and how the funding can be used before making any arrangements.

The 4 self-directed support options are:

  • Choose to have the money paid to you for the break (a Direct Payment) and use it to arrange and pay for your break
  • Choose the break you want and ask us to pay for it on your behalf
  • Ask us to arrange the break for you and pay for it on your behalf
  • A combination of the above options

You can find more information in the Falkirk Short Breaks Services Statement.

How do you arrange a short break?

If you would like help to arrange your break, please ask us for information.

If you would like a few hours away from caring for someone, we may be able to help you plan cover for the person you care for.

We could arrange for:

  • A paid worker to be with them
  • The person you care for to go to a club or a day service
  • The person you care for to spend time with other family or friends

If you or the person you care for would like an overnight break, we can put you in touch with the Short Breaks Bureau. They can give you information on a range of breaks and help book your break.

Examples might include:

  • Going to a residential care home
  • Having a break in a hotel or caravan
  • Going on a bus tour

There are a care homes in the Falkirk Council area that offer short break options. We can give you information about these and other options outside of the Falkirk Council area.

How the Short Breaks Bureau can help you

The Short Breaks Bureau organises overnight breaks. It's for people who need help to take a short break because they are caring for someone who has a disability or illness.

If you have had a Adult Carer Support Plan or Young Carer Statement completed we can tell you if you can use the Short Breaks Bureau. If you're not sure whether you have had this, please get in touch with us.

If you're paying for your own break, the Bureau can give you advice on finding somewhere that is accessible or offers support to people with a disability or illness.

If you know where you want to go or what activities you are looking for you can search for breaks using the Shared Care Scotland information service.

For more information, please contact the Short Breaks Bureau: