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Social Care for Children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)

There are three SEND teams within Cumbria County Council covering Carlisle & Eden, Allerdale & Copeland and Barrow & South Lakes.

The social workers within the teams work with children and young people age 0 to 18 years who have severe and complex disabilities, or life limiting conditions that effect learning and or physical development and have a major impact on their quality of life who require support over and above what is available through universal and community organisations.

Examples of children and young people we work with may include:-

  • Severe physical disabilities that significantly impact on the child's wellbeing.
  • Severe learning disabilities.
  • Multiple or severe disabilities.
  • Severe sensory impairment in conjunction with a severe learning disability.
  • Complex health needs.
  • A diagnoses of autism with severe learning disabilities.
  • Social work and family support
  • Support within the home and or community
  • Overnight care provision with shared carers/residential units or at home
  • Access to Direct Payments
  • Short break services
  • Domiciliary care in the home

The social workers within the SEND teams work in partnership with other service providers including health, schools, education and the voluntary sector to ensure a holistic package of support is agreed to meet the assessed needs.

It is recognised the needs of a disabled child and their family change from time to time.  There will be times when more support is needed, therefore, all care plans and packages of support are reviewed on a regular basis to ensure the level of provision is right and the child is making positive progress.

Access to the SEND Social Work Service is initially through contacting the central hub:

Tel: 0333 240 1727 to request an assessment of the child's needs.

If a child or young person meets the criteria a social worker from the appropriate local SEND area team will visit and complete a Child and Family Assessment.  The assessment, which can take up to a maximum of 45 days in exceptional circumstances, will take into account the views of the child and their parents; the developmental needs of the child, the capacity of the parent/carer to meet those needs; the impact of the home environment and support networks on the parent's ability to support their child.  We will discuss what services are available to achieve good outcomes.

If your child is not eligible we will provide advice and information on other services that may be available in the area.

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