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Moving from Children's Social Care to Adult Services

Information for parents and carers of children and young people aged 14 years and over with disabilities

This page describes the process of moving from Children and Young People's Services to Adult Services. The information relates to young people with permanent or substantial physical or sensory difficulties, severe learning difficulties, mental health problems or long term illnesses.

Where to find help

When a young person becomes 14

For disabled young people the formal transition from school to adult life begins at the age of 14.

This is the stage when Children and Young People's Services has to decide which young people with statements of special educational needs are disabled. The young person and his/her parents are sent a letter to tell them that they can be assessed for adult services before the young person is 18.

Education transition plan

In the meantime the education department sets up a transition planning meeting which produces a transition plan.

The meeting involves the young person, his/her parents, Children and Young People's Services and other agencies working with the young person. Social services will be represented by someone from the children with disabilities team or the Cheshire Deafness Support Network. The transition plan is then reviewed each year.

When a young person becomes 16

Children's Social Care will arrange for an adult services worker to meet the disabled young person and his/her parents.

They will work alongside the Children's Social Care worker for the next two years and will liaise with education, connexions and health services to plan with the young person and his/her family.

While the young person is 17 the adult worker, either a social worker or community care worker, will start talking to the young person and his/her parents about the kind of help they need and get information from the Transition Plan. This will include a children's social care assessment, school reports and a health assessment.

At the age of 18 - assessment

The assessment will be completed by the adult worker with the young person and his/her parents. The approach of listening to the young person's view will continue on from Children and Young People’s Services into Adult's Services but now the adult worker must take into account that the young person has the same rights as any other adult.

Full time education may continue and care services may be provided from a variety of sources. The adult worker, called the care worker, will co-ordinate the plans including what happens when education finishes.

Any time after the age of 18 a new assessment of the young person’s needs can be requested. Carers can also have an assessment of their own needs.

Short break services

There are a range of services which can provide short breaks away from home for people with disabilities. Plans can be made for regular short stays to give carers a break, emergency arrangements if support is needed unexpectedly, or the opportunity to see what being away from the family is like.

Short breaks can be arranged in a council run home, an independent home, family-based care, or for those with a higher level of needs, special houses provided by Health trusts.

Costs

All services provided by Social Care for people over 18 may have to be paid for. Each disabled person is asked to provide details of their own income from benefits and any other sources, and a Financial Assessment is made. Parents or carers may provide this information on behalf of the person.

Help for carers

Anyone who looks after someone else regularly is considered to be a carer. Carers can ask at any stage for an assessment of their own needs, and for services to help them.