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These tips have all been sent in by other parents, carers and professionals in the learning disability community. We hope they will give you plenty of ideas to try, but please remember Netbuddy is not responsible for the information provided or any of the activities suggested.
Summer holiday au pair
Its worth advertising on gumtree.com for a holiday live out or live in (if you have room) carer/au pair/nanny. There will be students returning for summer looking for work. Be specific about needs - you could advertise saying "ideal for trainee OT or SLT"
Its worth asking at the school/ nursery/ college/ centre the person you care for attends if you could put up a notice. There may be staff, students or volunteers that know your loved one interested in extra work, especially during holidays. It worked for me.
Preparing for the futureRespite is important, not just to take the pressure off me as a carer, but also for preparing my son for the future when I’m not around.
Core children's services
Core children's service is a UK national scheme offering respite for carers of disabled children. We were referred by our social worker but you can contact this service yourself on 0800 622 6114.
Some hospices provide respite care, we have found this very helpful. They offer a high level care is much appreciated and which also means you can feel comfortable your family member is being cared for properly.
The charity Scope provides a number of short break and respite care services, including residential short breaks, weekend, after school and holiday schemes and support while you are on holiday. Scope
Buddies is a children's service run by Dimensions, that provides short breaks for children with learning disabilities during the school summer holidays. http://dimensions-buddies.org
VitaliseVitalise is a national charity providing short breaks (respite care) and other services for disabled people and carers www.vitalise.org.uk
Summer play schemes
Summer play schemes and local swimming courses can be a god-send in the holidays. My daughter went to one last year that was held by a local school, and she learned all sorts of craft activities.
Crossroads Care has a network of local schemes providing respite in the home, using trained staff. Many Crossroads schemes do not charge although there is often a waiting list for their services.
Carers Break Project
NHS Oxfordshire is running a scheme called the Carers Breaks Project, which offers respite care to people who are caring for someone more than 20 hours a week. To be eligible, carers must be registered with a GP in Oxfordshire. To find out more, call 0845 050 7666.