Children with Disabilities Team

Age Range:

0-14

The Service:

We provide advice on disability and services in the borough for children and young people aged 0-14. We can also provide support in the form of a ‘care package’ of services for your child, if eligible. The services provided may include activities, short breaks, respite, care arrangements, or a personal budget.

A social worker will contact you if we receive a referral about your child from another agency. We will discuss your child’s disability and seek your permission to obtain information from other professionals involved, such as your child’s GP, teacher, physiotherapist, if appropriate. If your child is eligible for a service from this team we will arrange to meet and assess his/her needs The assessment will focus on the child’s developmental needs, a parent/carers capacity to meet these needs and the environment in which the family is living . We will discuss what services are available to support your child to achieve good outcomes. If your child is not eligible we will provide information on other services that can help.

After the assessment we will agree a ‘Care Plan’ for your child, if eligible.
The ‘Care Plan’ states what we will all do to help meet your child’s needs.

As part of our statutory responsibilities we will always work with you to ensure your child’s welfare is safeguarded and their needs are being met.

Who is the service for?

Children and young people with a high level of Disability aged 0-14 who live in Southwark.

Criteria for access to service

This is a statutory service, therefore we provide advice in relation to all children, however the criteria for disability registration with the Children with Disabilities service in Southwark is that a child or young person has a severe to profound and permanent disability of one, or a combination of:
• Severe and profound learning disability
• Severe and profound physical disability
• Severe and profound communication difficulties (including autistic spectrum disorder if accompanied by severe learning difficulties)
• Severe or profound visual or hearing impairment
• Have complex health needs (including technology dependant)

Behavioural / emotional / interpersonal need would not be seen on its own as a basis for disability registration.
An Assessment of Need identifies the provision of services as appropriate.

Accessibility of this service

The team is based at Sunshine House between 9.00 – 5.00.

The building is accessible for disability access and there is a car park for parents of children who are not mobile.

How this is provided:

  • Home visits to complete eligibility assessments and care package/short break assessments
  • Booked appointments at Sunshine House with a social worker
  • Phone advice 5 days per week between 9.00 – 5.00
  • Emergency appointments booked by phone
  • Support from a social worker

How can I access this service?

Parent/carers can self refer by phoning the number below to discuss their child’s disability and seek advice on eligibility and services.

Telephone Number: 0207 525 5372

Professionals and voluntary organisations should call the above number if there is an urgent child protection matter, or if they would like advice prior to making a referral for support. All referrals from professionals or voluntary organisations will need to be made on a CAF and emailed to:

MASH@southwark.gov.uk

How is this service funded?

The service is funded by Southwark Council and is a statutory council service.

Do you need to pay for this service?

It is a free service

Confidentiality and Impartiality

The service is confidential and we will seek your permission before speaking to other professionals. If there are child protection concerns about your child we may, as part of our safeguarding duties speak to other professionals without seeking your permission.

Useful to know

We operate a daily duty service which means you will be able to speak to a social worker over the phone. If your child already has a social worker please contact them direct on their number. If they are unavailable leave a message on their phone. They will either return your call or if urgent you can contact an alternative number from their phone noted in their outgoing message.

Training provided:

The Communication & Information Specialist and Makaton Senior Tutor provides full Makaton training for parents, carers and professionals. The Specialist also offers advice and practical support and training in respect of all forms of specialist communication and accessible information which can be accessed through the ‘Local Training Offer’:



We operate a daily duty service which means you will be able to speak to a social worker over the phone and may be offered an emergency appointment. If your child already has a social worker please contact them direct. If they are unavailable leave a message on their phone and they will contact you on their return.