What is Family Link?
The Family Link scheme provides a 'short break' service for disabled children and young people living in the Bath and North East Somerset area. These children and young people have been assessed by Children's Services as likely to benefit from the service.
Children and young people are linked with approved carers who offer either daytime or overnight care. Overnight care consists of an overnight stay, weekends or even a few days.
“Family Link has provided a lifeline to me as a single parent. It provides me with time for myself confident in the knowledge that my child is safe and happy with people she trusts and cares about. Family Link makes a big difference to both of us, the experience is extremely rewarding for my daughter and myself and, I believe, for the carers involved."- B&NES foster carer
Why Family Link?
The short breaks and support which Family Link provides are designed to benefit the whole family. The scheme can provide families with a break, as well as a chance for their child/young person to do things they might enjoy. They will also have a chance of meeting new friends from outside their school or family.
“It's great to be a part of a young persons life, help them to develop confidence and to contribute, in a small way, to their and their family's well-being. It is such a privilege to see them blossom and see their potential unfold!”- B&NES foster carer
Who can be a Family Link carer?
We need all kinds of people. You can be single or with a partner, with or without children, of working age or retired and from any religious, cultural or ethnic background. We are looking for people who would enjoy caring for a disabled child/young person for a short time; who have energy, common sense and patience.
How to become a Family Link carer?
This is the same process as becoming a foster carer - see our Six Steps to foster care
Support for Family Link carers
Family Link carers are allocated a supervising social worker as with all foster care. The support worker will identify appropriate links with children/young people and make sure this runs smoothly by offering ongoing supervision and support.
All Family Link carers have access to on-going training.
Equipment can be provided when there is a need.
How often will I look after children/young people?
The amount of work you do for the scheme will be entirely up to you; some people do several sessions a week, whilst others do just one or two per month. As part of your assessment you will discuss your preferences.
Family Link Allowance
You will receive an allowance and expenses for all sessions undertaken.
Day time rate = £7.50 per hour
Low rates =£55.00- weekdays during term time when going back to school the following morning
Higher rate= £65.00- weekends and school holiday when the child stays for longer*
*if longer than 24 hours the carer will also receive the hourly daytime fee
Additional Family Link payments:
Disturbed night payment £10
Invasive Clinical procedures £10*
*only for children meeting set criteria
Family Link providers can claim pre-agreed expenses and mileage.