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Short breaks

Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Social Care

Short Breaks range from going to the local arts and crafts group through to having specially trained carers coming to your home. The type of short break depends on the child or young person's needs, and the needs of the rest of your family.

If you are interested in short breaks through Trafford Council for your child, please register your interest using the short breaks registration form and you will be contacted when details of upcoming breaks become available.

Short breaks are managed through a set of guidelines called the Eligibility Criteria. These are based on the support needs of the child or young person.

There are 4 different levels or tiers:


Tier 1 - Universal

  • Child/young person requires no additional support to access provision. This is also called "Mainstream" activities.
  • May be suitable for some children/young people and their families - however activities have not clearly stated that additional support can be given.  
  • Any specific requirements need to be discussed with the providers directly.
  • You pay the provider directly for these activities.

See details of activities at: 

Things to do for children and families 

Things to do for young people

Things to do for adults and older people


Tier 2 - Targeted

  • Child/young person requires more targeted support to access a short break.
  • These services are targeted solely at disabled children and young people.
  • Short breaks at this level can be accessed directly or through referral from the Complex Needs (Child Social Care) team.
  • The provider of the service will carry out an assessment and help you decide if the provision is suitable for you and your child or young person.
  • The local authority commission this type of short break. Parent carers may have to pay a subsidised rate. 

There is also a guide to employing a personal assistant for your child.


Tier 3 and 4 - Specialist

  • Child/young person requires specialist short break support identified through assessment by our Complex Needs (Child Social Care) team.
  • This could be done by either a Social Worker or a health professional.
  • The local authority pays for these short breaks through a personal budget. 
  • However you may also be able to access support from these organisations privately funded.  
  • Tier 4 could include residential placements and overnight provision. 

Short Breaks Duty Statement

The short breaks duty statement is published every year to set out the provision that is available in Trafford. 

Trafford Council recently led a review of the existing short breaks and the eligibility criteria. We worked closely with Trafford Parents Forum, representatives from the CAN Team and Trafford Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). If you’d like to know more about this work, please take a look at the short breaks review executive summary.

If you would like to be more involved in this work going forward, please get in touch with Trafford Parents Forum.

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