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UPDATE: Short Breaks Offer COVID 19

7 April 2020

Short Breaks Offer Update – COVID 19


Due to the impact of COVID 19, a number of children and young people are not able to access their usual Short Breaks, either because the carer is unavailable,  the Short Breaks provider has had to close/cancel their activities or because you are unable to spend your Individual Budget on your prepaid card.


However, we recognise that some families are now faced with the challenge of keeping their child or young person entertained and occupied during the current period of lockdown.


In these current exceptional circumstances we would like to offer families some alternative support to the standard Short Break offer, we will be allowing families the opportunity to purchase equipment and toys such as outdoor play equipment, books, arts and craft materials, etc. so that they are able to continue supporting the development and stimulation of their children through play and creativity. 


What is the Short Breaks Offer?

This offer is only open to children or young people who are known to the Short Break service and have been allocated Short Break hours or a prepaid card.


The offer is as follows:

  • you may purchase items to the maximum value of £250
  • any monies spent will be deducted from your 2020/21 Short Breaks allocation (including if you use a Provider)
  • If you use a Provider and you spend £250, your Short Break allocation will be reduced by 20 hours
  • if you are in receipt of Individual Budget (IB) Prepaid Card and spend £250 your remaining allocation will be £630 or £190 (if you receive a Care Package with Social activities) 


  • You do not need to spend the full £250.  You are free to buy items of a lower value.


i.e. if you purchase items with a maximum value of £125 you may do so, and the Short Break Provider allocation will be reduced by 10 hours



You do not have to accept this offer. If you would prefer, you can keep your short break hours or Individual Budget to use when the situation changes.


  • all purchases must be specifically for the child or young person with a disability and is limited to one order per household.


What do I need to do?


If you have the funds available or money remaining on your prepaid card, you can go ahead and purchase (please note the list of ‘What can I buy?’)


Please send your invoices/receipts to with your child’s name and Date of Birth in the subject bar.

  • you must submit the original receipt/invoice for payment and keep a copy for your records 
  • handwritten receipts will not be accepted
  • All items must be purchased from a reputable retailer (including online retailers)
  • there will be no cash alternatives
  • this offer cannot be used as a part payment for an item (i.e. items over £250)


What can I buy?

You may purchase items such as: (this list is not exhaustive).

  • sensory toys/equipment
  • outdoor play equipment such as a trampoline, swing set, scooter, bike, sand box
  • books (including e-books)
  • musical Instruments
  • arts and craft materials
  • board games/puzzles
  • outdoor growing equipment- seed etc
  • suitable electronic aids, such as an age appropriate tablet
  • (If your chosen item is not included above, please contact the team to check before purchasing)


  • the purchase must be for your disabled child only. You cannot make the purchase on behalf of someone else.


What can I NOT buy?

You cannot use the funding to purchase the following

  • any subscription services such as Sky Television, Netflix, etc
  • any large electronic items (televisions)
  • any white goods
  • items for siblings
  • tuition services
  • part payment for an item over £250
  • clothing
  • food, drink, from Supermarkets, Deliveroo, UberEats etc


This is a one off offer due to the COVID 19 and will not be repeated later in the year. This purchase will cover April – June of your Short Breaks.

All purchases must be completed by 1st May 2020 or within 2 weeks of receiving your budget .


If your budget is not used in line with these requirements, we will subtract the amount from your next Short Breaks payment in July or you may be asked to pay the Council back.


Please contact the team on 020 8356 6796 or e-mail if you have any questions.



You do not have to accept this offer. If you would prefer, you can keep your short break hours or direct payments to use when the situation changes.