A disabled boy and his carer

Short break scheme for carers of disabled children in Scotland re-opens

Take a Break Scotland’s (TABS), a short break fund for the carers of disabled children and their families, re-opened for applications with extra funding for 2022/2023 but it will be closing on 20 June so people are encouraged to apply now.

Take a Break is Scotland’s Short Break fund for carers of disabled children, young people, and their families, administered by national charity, Family Fund www.takeabreakscotland.org.uk

The programme, funded by the Scottish Government, aims to provide carers with the choice and opportunity to access a single or ongoing break from their day-to-day routines.

TABS grants enable carers of a disabled or seriously ill child or young person to have the opportunity to choose how they would like to take a break, with a view to improving the quality of life, health, and well-being of the whole family.

It is a discretionary fund that aims to support carers, including kinship carers, and their families to improve their physical and emotional wellbeing and give opportunities to take part in fun and leisure activities or enjoy a break from caring.

All carers need time to help relax and unwind away from the everyday routine of caring.

Last year, the Scottish Government provided £700,000 for TABS. But this year an increase to £1.5 million, will allow Family Fund to administer TABS grants to around 4,500 families.

Grant applications will be open from 3 May to 20 June 2022.

With steeply rising costs, sustained pressures, and reduced access to support services, following the pandemic, families’ budgets and caring responsibilities are stretched even further. These breaks and respite can transform families’ lives.


You can apply if:

  • You have lived in Scotland for six months or longer
  • You are UK resident
  • You are caring for a disabled* child or young person aged 0-20 years and they live with you
  • Your child is not subject to a care order.


How to apply

You can make an online application by visiting www.takeabreakscotland.org.uk or contact the Take a Break helpline on 01904 571093 open Monday – Friday 9.00am – 1.00pm.  Please leave your name and full contact details for a form to be sent out to you.

A take a Break grant is awarded directly to a nominated bank account and an average award is around £300. A grant can be used in different ways, to suit each family’s circumstances.

  • A breakaway, weekend theatre break, or city breaks
  • A break for the carer and the rest of the family while a disabled child is in respite care
  • Towards the costs of an extra carer when on an outing so a carer can relax
  • Entrance costs to theme parks, zoos, or music festivals
  • Gym membership fees for the carer or family
  • Travel costs
  • Camping equipment so a family can enjoy multiple short breaks
  • Dance or drama clubs, horse riding, swimming lessons, and much more.

Families can apply for a grant by visiting www.takeabreakscotland.org.uk.