Could you ‘Share the Care’ and offer a child a short break?
Gloucestershire County Council is looking for carers who can provide regular short breaks to children and young people with disabilities and complex health conditions.
‘Share the Care’ is an annual campaign from the council’s Family Link Plus team, which aims to highlight the need for short break carers in Gloucestershire.
During the campaign the team will hold a number of events across the county providing information to people who are interested in becoming a short break carer.
On Saturday 13 July, the team will hold their main event between 10.30am-1.30pm at Gloucester Museum. From 11am-1pm, one of their experienced carers will be available to answer any questions people may have.
The council’s Shared Lives team will also be at the event, providing information about becoming a carer for adults with care needs, along with the Fostering team.
All short break carers receive training and ongoing support from health and social care professionals and unlike fostering it isn’t always necessary for carers to have a spare bedroom, however they are required to be over 21 years of age.
The children requiring care have a variety of needs including severe learning disabilities and autistic spectrum disorders. Carers for children and young people with physical disabilities will need an accessible property.
A Family Link Plus carer said, 'When I offer short breaks in my home it allows the parents to recharge their batteries and gives the child a change of scene, the opportunity to try different experiences, have fun and make new friends. It can be so exciting to see a child's confidence grow and the progress they make''
Cllr Richard Boyles, deputy leader of the council and cabinet member for children’s safeguarding and early years said:
“Short breaks can be a few hours, a day or an overnight stay, and are a vital source of support to families who care for their child full time. This time allows them to relax, spend time with other members of their family and do every day things like the weekly shop; which can be really challenging as a full-time carer.
Our carers work closely with parents and professionals, following an agreed care plan to make sure we achieve the best outcomes for children.
All children are different and to meet their needs, the team are looking for a wide variety of people. I urge anyone who is interested in becoming a short break carer to come along to one of our information events”
Share the care information events:
• Friday 5th July, 10-3pm at Cinderford Co-op
• Monday 8th July, 10-3pm at Moreton Town Centre
• Friday 12th July, 10-3pm Cheltenham High Street
• Saturday 13th July, 10.30-1.30pm Gloucester Museum
Family Link Plus website: www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/familylinkplus.
Alternatively, you can contact the team directly on 01452 426860 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.