Creative Breaks

Creative Breaks is funded through the Short Breaks Fund by the Scottish Government as part of their commitment to the development of short breaks for the benefit of carers and those they care for. The purpose of the Creative Breaks Grant Programme is to improve the range, choice and availability of short breaks so that carers and the people they care for have a better quality of life and feel better supported in their caring relationship.

Lanarkshire Carers Centre has been awarded funding by the Creative Breaks Grant Programme to fund flexible breaks for carers as part of the range of services and support that is currently offered to carers in Lanarkshire. This funding is available from November 2015 until October 2016. 

Applications are made by contacting a Carer Support Worker from Lanarkshire Carers Centre (or CLASP project in Wishaw/Shotts).

Types of Breaks 

Creative Breaks funding is intended to be flexible and provide carers with a break from day to day routines, a chance to try new things and participate in social activities, and time to rest and recharge their batteries. Breaks might include, for example, short holidays, leisure/fitness pursuits, cinema passes, pampering sessions, going out for a meal, classes/lessons or other day/evening activities. It can also be used to fund joint breaks and activities for the carer and the person they care for.

The fund does not set restrictions on the nature or length of the break. Applicants are encouraged to think about how this fund could be used to support regular short breaks over a longer period rather than a one off holiday.

Eligibility Criteria

All applicants must be carers or young carers who are caring for an adult (aged 21 or over). A carer provides unpaid care to a family member, partner, relative or friend who needs help to manage a long term condition, disability, physical or mental ill health or addiction. The fund will target those carers who are less likely to access traditional services, those who are under most stress and also those in most need of a short break.

The following eligibility criteria should also be met by anyone wishing to make an application:

  • The carer lives in Lanarkshire and provides regular and substantial unpaid care as above.
  • The carer (and/or the cared for) is able to make the necessary arrangements for the break

Due to demand, in addition to assessing applications against the above criteria, the panel may prioritise applications where:

  • The applicant has not accessed this fund before
  • Little or no immediate support is available from another source
  • The break will be used to address the carer’s specific health issues i.e. to attend hospital appointments or to recuperate
  • The carer finds it difficult to cope and may be unable to continue in their caring roles without intervention
  • The carer can demonstrate that they would otherwise find it difficult, or impossible, to take a break due to financial circumstances

Aims and Priorities

Creative Breaks funding has the following aims:

  • Carers and those they care for will have improved physical and emotional wellbeing
  • Carers will have more opportunity to have a life outside of caring
  • Carers will be better able to sustain their caring role
  • Carers will be able to take more control of their life

The funding can help with a range of costs associated with breaks, including transport, accommodation, leisure activities and supported holidays and carers are encouraged to think widely of creative possibilities. Applicants can apply for up to £300, and if successful payment will usually be made by PRT Lanarkshire Carers Centre directly by BACS payment into the carer’s bank account.

The Panel Process

The panel includes members from North Lanarkshire Council Housing & Social Work Service, South Lanarkshire Council Resources, North Lanarkshire Carers Together, South Lanarkshire Carers Network, Lanarkshire Carers Centre and a Carer Representative. All applicants will be considered by 3 of the six panel representatives. Application forms should be counter-signed by the carers support worker (who can also but not always be the referee) in each relevant locality and whilst applications can be received throughout the funding cycle the panel will meet once a month.

Applications should be submitted by the 28th of each month for consideration by the panel that will meet around 2/3 weeks after that.. Applicants will normally be informed of the decision within 7 days of the panel meeting. If for any reason the panel is unable to meet, applications will be held over until the following month and applicants informed.

Payment for any award approved will be by BACS and will take at least four weeks from the date of panel to be paid. No telephone calls will be taken by the administration team until the four week period has passed.

Mini Breaks Assessment Process

Recommendation by Carer Support Worker/Duty Worker, CLASP (Wishaw/Shotts) and signed off by the Carer Resource Worker for either North or South Lanarkshire as appropriate.

Terms and Conditions

The following Terms and Conditions apply to all applicants:

  • A minimum of twenty four months since any previous short break grant was received. (excluding mini break award).
  • All information provided on the application form must be accurate at the time of signing.
  • The carer must sign a Creative Breaks Award Agreement Form.
  • The panel reserves the right to ask for additional information as part of the assessment process, if required.
  • Carers agree to take part in evaluation if they are successful with an application. This involves the carer completing a short questionnaire after they use their grant to help assess the impact of the grant.
  • Carers must provide proof of purchase e.g. receipts or invoices.
  • Lanarkshire Carers Centre may use anonymised information given by carers for the purposes of reporting to Shared Care Scotland, and promotion of the fund.
  • Any photographs that are sent to Lanarkshire Carers Centre as part of the evaluation process by individuals who have received grants may be used for the purposes of promoting the fund or for reporting to Shared Care Scotland.
  • The success and amount of any grant will be dependent upon availability of funding.
  • Carers should note that failure to produce receipts may have negative impact on any future applications.
  • No more than twenty applications will be heard at each panel and if there are more then some will be held over until the following month’s panel.
  • Only one application per household to be submitted.
  • The panel will not pay retrospectively for any short break therefore a break cannot be booked before the panel have agreed to funding.
  • Only one application per cared for to be submitted.
  • This fund is not open to kinship carers.
  • It is the responsibility of the applicant to arrange any relevant travel insurance.
  • The panel’s decision is final.
  • In signing the form the carer is consenting to the information provided being stored by Lanarkshire Carers Centre and shared with panel members for the purposes of decision making, evaluation and reporting.

These useful search engines allow you to search for a short break that meets your needs:

North Lanarkshire

Voluntary Action North Lanarkshire (VANL) Locator Tool

South Lanarkshire

Voluntary Action South Lanarkshire (VASLAN) Locator Tool


Shared Care Scotland Short Breaks Search

Please contact your Carer Support Worker who will support you to apply for a short break. If you have not used any of our services before, please contact us in the first instance to discuss your caring role:

South Lanarkshire: Please contact our Hamilton office on 01698 428090

North Lanarkshire: Please contact our Airdire office on 01236 755550

Please complete our short breaks online enquiry form and a member of staff will get back to you as soon as possible. Alternatively, please call us on 01698 428090 / 01236 755550: