Trends/Statistics

Short break support is failing family carers: reviewing progress 10 years on from Mencap’s first Breaking Point report

In 2006 Mencap produced a comprehensive review of short break provision. Now, 10 years on, they are revisiting the support available for family carers to see whether recent policy initiatives and investment have delivered the much-needed change. A total of 264 family carers responded to their survey on short breaks provision and experiences of caring. They also sent Freedom of Information requests to all 152 local authorities in England that provide social care services. This report looks at short breaks provision in a climate of cuts to central and local government budgets.

Creative Breaks, A summary of projects funded between September 2014 and October 2015

The Short Breaks Fund helping to make breaks better and brighter for unpaid carers and cared-for people in Scotland. Launched in 2010 for one year, the fund has now been running for five years and has proved to be a lifeline for many carers. During the past five years the Scottish Government, through Shared Cared Scotland has distributed 12,547,409 to 697 projects to deliver innovative, tailor made breaks to groups and individuals.

Short breaks in 2015, an uncertain future

Short breaks are among the most fundamental services for supporting families with disabled children. By providing breaks from caring and positive experiences for children and young people, they allow parent carers to focus on relationships with other children, or to have time to themselves or with their partner, leading to lower levels of psychological distress, higher levels of life satisfaction and better health. As a result, fewer parent carers reach ‘breaking point’ and fewer children require access to emergency provision or enter the looked after system.

The cost of short break services: understanding the contracting and commissioning process

The aim of the research was to explore the costs of short break services for disabled children and their families. The study also sought to understand the contracting and commissioning process, including the factors that inform decision making processes and the management of budgets.

The research was commissioned by Action for Children and carried out by the Centre for Child and Family Research, Loughborough University.

Scottish Government Respite Care Data 2014: Shared Care Scotland Summary

The Scottish Government recently released the 2014 data for the provision of respite in Local Authority areas across Scotland. The statistics are presented in "respite weeks provided or purchased by local authorities" and then further broken down into "overnight" and "daytime" respite for three age groups: 0-17, 18-64 and 65+. This paper from Shared Care Scotland provides a short summary of the data and comments on issues arising from analysis of this data. Links to the full Scottish Government data and analysis are also provided.

The impact of disability on the lives of young children: Analysis of growing up in Scotland data

This research project was commissioned by Scottish Government Children and Families Analysis with the objective of undertaking an in-depth analysis of data from the Growing Up in Scotland study (GUS) to examine the circumstances and outcomes of children living with a disability in Scotland. The overall aim of this analysis was to explore the impact of disability on the child, their parents and the wider family unit.

Scottish Government Respite Care Data 2012: Shared Care Scotland Summary

The Scottish Government recently released the 2012 data for the provision of respite in Local Authority areas across Scotland. The statistics are presented in "respite weeks provided or purchased by local authorities" and then further broken down into "overnight" and "daytime" respite for three age groups: 0-17, 18-64 and 65+. Much of the data is only comparable on a year-to-year basis due to methodological changes that have taken place over time. However a number of helpful comparisons are possible.

Rest assured? A study of unpaid carers' experiences of short breaks

This report describes the findings of research carried out between August and December 2011 into the experiences of unpaid carers in accessing and using short breaks (respite care). The study explored, from the carers’ perspective the benefits of short breaks (provided by formal services and family and friends), good practice in planning and provision, deficits and areas for improvement. Research findings are based on 1210 responses to a Scotland-wide survey distributed through carer organisations, four focus groups involving 36 carers and 13 interviews.