25 October 2018
A consultation into changes to the short breaks provision for children with disabilities has been launched by the Children, Young People, Education and Skills Department.
The short breaks service offers children and young people with disabilities the opportunity to spend time away from their parents or carers, to have fun with their friends and to develop their independence. It also gives families a break from their caring responsibilities.
The consultation has been launched as families would like the service to offer more choice for their children, including more group activities, and more support in the school holidays. The changes will aim to make sure that access to the service is fair and that families can get support when they need it.
Children’s Minister, Senator Sam Mézec, said: “It’s really important that we get things right for children, young people, and their families. We believe that the families who use our services should be involved in designing them to make sure that the services are suitable and fit for purpose. Putting children first is one of the government’s main priorities, and involving children and their families in the services we offer is a key part of that.”
Under proposed new changes, the short breaks service will change to offer three tiers of support. These will include universal services at the lowest tier (such as youth groups, nurseries, and sports clubs that are accessible to everyone), targeted support designed for disabled children, and specialist support for those with the most need. Children will be supported at the lowest tier required to meet their needs, so that resources will be available to give families support without delay.
The Children, Young People, Education and Skills department would like to hear families’ views about the proposed changes. Practitioners who work with children with disabilities are also welcome to give their views.
The responses to the consultation will be used to guide the development of the service and to inform children’s services that are developed in the future.
Those wishing to submit their views can either complete the online survey, email their views to email@example.com, or attend a drop-in engagement session. All submissions must be received by Wednesday 21 November.
The drop-in sessions are open to anybody who would like to give their view.
They will be held on
- Thursday 8 November, from 12.30pm to 2pm at Beresford Street Kitchen
- Thursday 8 November, from 6pm to 8pm at the Child Development and Therapy Centre
- Tuesday 13 November, from 9.30am to 10.30am at Mont A L’Abbe School
- Sunday 18 November, from 2pm to 4pm at Les Quennevais Sports Centre.