Skip to main content

Children With Disabilities Team

Who are we?

We are a specialist social work team that offers support to children and young people with disabilities aged 0 to 18 and their families.

The service comprises of a team of social workers and assistants. We work in partnership with children, young people, families and other services such as health, education and community organisations. 

What do we do?

The role of the team is to:

  • assess the needs of children and families and offer support, advice and information and plan a programme of care when needed
  • liaise with other agencies such as health to ensure help and support offered to families is coordinated
  • provide short break and respite care for children and young people when needed
  • support access for disabled children and their families to practical help at home, personal care, play schemes, and support groups
  • contribute towards the Education Health Care Plans if appropriate
  • provide a duty service for children, young people and families who are open to the Children with Disabilities Team. The duty service operates Monday to Friday during office hours. The team can be contacted on 01234 718023

What services are available?

Short Breaks 

Short breaks come in a variety of formats, lasting anything from just a few hours to a few days depending on the type of provision and the needs of the child or young person and their family. They can include day, evening, overnight and weekend activities; and range from ensuring ‘everyday’ activities are accessible to disabled children and young people to providing highly specialised support; and can take place in the child or young person’s home, the home of an approved carer, or a residential or community setting

Residential Respite

Disabled children/young people aged from 7 to 18 years can be offered short-term respite care at Sunflower House or Foxgloves. Respite aims to provide carers with  a break and provide the young person with opportunities to enhance the quality of their life and develop peer relationships. 

Direct payments

Instead of social care providing respite or home carers, they can make a direct payment to you. Your child’s needs will be assessed and you will be allocated so many hours per week. Then you can choose your own carer and times for care etc. and you pay the carer direct. 

This direct payment is only to be used to provide care and support for your child. The carer will need to be DBS checked to ensure your child will be safe in their care.

The team have a Direct Payment Officer who offers support and advice regarding direct payments.

Home Care

If your child requires lots of care because they have significant physical and learning disabilities or have complex needs, you can ask social care for an assessment for a home carer.

Preparing for Adulthood

It is important to plan what services a young person will need as they leave school and become adults. The Children with Disabilities Team works closely with young people, their families and other agencies to plan transitions into adulthood

Who to contact

Contact Name
Duty worker

Where to go

Borough Hall
Cauldwell Street
MK42 9AP
Get directions

Other Details


Referral required
Referral Details

Children and young people supported by the service will have a permanent and substantial physical and / or learning disability or a life limiting/life threatening condition. This includes:

  • physical disability
  • learning disability 
  • profound multiple disabilities
  • disability associated with complex health problems
  • severe sensory disabilities

The team cannot respond to the needs of every child who has a difficulty, and so we have a Threshold Criteria to help us decide this. Broadly, this includes children who have a 'permanent and substantial disability'.


Referrals can be made by:

  • Parent /carers
  • Professionals

Referrals are not made directly to the Children with Disabilities Team. They should be made to the Multi Agency Support Hub (MASH) by telephoning 01234 718700

You will be asked a number of questions to establish if your child fits the criteria of the team. 

A decision about the next step is made within 24 hours. The options are either that a Single Assessment is completed, or information and advice is given. 'Information and advice given' means that either the family are not eligible for services, or, if appropriate, the team will signpost to other mainstream services or support groups, such as Carers in Bedfordshire

Single Assessment

The single assessment is an in depth, detailed assessment, and family and professionals connected with the child will be involved. The social worker will look at the following areas:

  • the child’s needs
  • the carer’s ability and capacity as a parent
  • the environment and the wider support that is available to the family
  • the needs of carers and siblings.

The family will receive a copy of the completed assessment and the social worker will discuss how their needs could best be met. The assessment will be completed within 40 working days.

If needs are identified that cannot be met via Universal Services, the Social Worker will complete an application to the Application to Resource Panel. Alongside the Social Worker, members of the Panel will use the assessment to identify a tailored package of Short Breaks Services which can meet your individual needs

Right to Appeal

Families and individuals have a right to appeal the assessment of their needs.  This can be discussed with the Social Worker who has undertaken the assessment

Age Bands
11-14 years old
Parents and carers
15-17 years old
0-4 years old
5-10 years old
SEN Provision Type