Activities Unlimited New Service Model
We have very recently launched a new service model for the way we issue Personal Budgets. If you applied for a Personal Budget from the 9th of March 2022, you will be accessing the new service model. This means you have completed the new online application form and may have been allocated a Personal Budget award based on the new criteria. Information about the new service and criteria can be found here. The new Service model is now available for all new AU users who wish to apply for a personal budget and those who wish to appeal a prior decision.
If you applied for a Personal budget before the 9th of March 2022 by completing the online self-assessment form your current Personal Budget offer will remain the same for this financial year 2022 to 2023. You will still need to provide evidence of spend in the usual way. We will be contacting you from September 2022 to support you to move over to the new system to apply for a Personal Budget form April 2023. You will have a named person to help with this. The information about your service remains the same and can be found here.
We are working towards having more scope for Personal Budgets to give families more choice and control over the provision they receive. If you have any questions about Personal Budgets please email email@example.com.
Why does AU Provide Short Break Personal Budgets?
Suffolk County Council has chosen to provide Short Break Personal Budgets for disabled children and young people who have moderate and higher levels of needs and require additional support to be able to access all the services provided by Activities Unlimited. These services are funded, which when added to the investment into specialist Short Break activity providers are worth three times their face value.
This enables all families to benefit from the Council’s investment into Short Break leisure activities (the actual cost the Council pays for a disabled child or young person to attend a quality activity, is in most cases up to three or four times more than the advertised cost.) Activities Unlimited works with all leisure activity providers promoted on the website, but particularly specialist providers to guarantee that the venue for the leisure activity, and the skills and abilities of the staff are of a desired quality to meet the needs, wants and wishes of our disabled children and young people members.
Parent Carers of children with disabilities have told us that Short Breaks are not always about spending time away from the child(ren) they care for. For some people it’s about spending time together as a family or purchasing leisure equipment and specialist toys to keep their child happy and engaged. For others it's about seeing their child happily attending fun activities whilst the parent carer has a break, does something for themselves or spends time with other people that are important in their lives. Activities Unlimited Personal Budgets are designed to offer choice and control to families in order to meet their bespoke Short Break needs.
Our Short Break Personal Budgets are awarded from April and need to be spent by the end of March the following year. These are awarded from the month parent carers apply and complete the online application form. Please contact us if you have any questions about monthly pro-rating.
How do I apply for a Short Break Personal Budget?
You will need to complete the online application form which asks questions about your child(ren) and your needs as a parent carer. Please make sure you answer the questions carefully and honestly. The form will save so you can go back to it later. If you have more than one child that you would like to apply for you will need to complete separate forms for each child. If you have difficulty accessing the online form the team are on hand to help so, please do contact us.
What happens next?
On completion of the form and submission of any supporting evidence regarding disability benefits the team will review the information. You will be contacted within 28 days and informed of the outcome of you application.