How can Social Services help?
Social Services departments have Disability Teams with occupational therapists. They visit people at home to assess their needs and to provide advice on specialist equipment and adaptations and, where possible, arrange for their provision. The occupational therapist may advise on what grants are available. Eligibility for equipment and grants varies between areas and for different individuals depending on their means. You may be able to have some equipment on loan from your local Social Services department or hospital.
Social Services may also be able to arrange for you to have help with personal care and advise you on local schemes that offer help with housework and shopping.
Details of your local Social Services department will be listed in the telephone directory. Alternatively, a local library should be able to give you the number or address.
How can voluntary organisations help?
The British Red Cross runs an equipment loan service for wheelchairs and other specialist equipment, and Age UK helps with shopping and housework in some areas. Age UK also offers handyman services for help with gardening and small household jobs such as changing the batteries on smoke alarms. You may also find others in the phone book – or ask your Social Services department or the Citizens Advice Bureau.
The following organisations may be able to provide additional advice and information:
Phone: 020 7380 6500
Helpline: 0808 800 4050
Phone: 0800 678 1174
AskSARA (part of the Disabled Living Foundation)
Ask SARA gives helpful advice on gadgets and equipment to make everyday activities easier. The website will ask you to select the topic you’re interested in (for example cooking) and answer a few questions before giving a personalised report.
Assist UK (for information on Disabled Living Centres)
Phone: 0161 8329757
British Red Cross
Phone: 0344 871 1111
Scope (formerly Disability Information and DIAL Network or Dial UK)
Phone: 0808 800 3333
An independent network of local disability information and advice services run by and for disabled people.
Disability Rights UK (formerly Disability Alliance, RADAR and the National Centre for Independent Living)
Phone: 0207 250 8181
Disabled Living Foundation (DLF)
Phone: 0300 999 0004
National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS)
Phone: 0845 458 3969
Helpline: 0800 298 7650
Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB)
Phone: 0303 123 9999