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Thursday 22 June 2023 at 2pm– 4pm at Knockbreda Health and Wellbeing Centre, 110 Saintfield Road, Belfast, BT8 6GR

If you are a carer of someone who is in receipt of Older People Services from Belfast Trust and eligible for a carer assessment, we would like to invite you to a Focus Group.  We would like to explore with carers how a Direct Payment, which is a payment made directly to the carer based on an assessed need, may be used to support carers to access respite services.


The Trust recognises the invaluable role that carers play in providing support to older people to keep them within their own homes and communities.   Traditionally the Trust has provided respite which has supported the carer to take a break from their caring role.

Carers have shared the importance of respite or accessing a break to help them continue in their caring role.  Respite is facilitated based on an assessment of need which is undertaken by the Trust with the carer to identify what support is required.  However respite options can sometimes be limited, in relation to what can be provided or how flexible it may be.

The Trust is exploring the needs of the carers to access more flexible respite options.  To support carers in their role, the Trust is currently looking at how a Direct Payment may be used as an alternative to the current forms of respite such as a care home placement.  It may be that these current forms will still remain the preferred option for some carers and if you are in receipt of such services, this will not change for you.  For other carers, they may wish to have more control to plan their respite care in a way that suits them better.  A Direct Payment arrangement may then be offered.  This will enable the carer to access a financial payment to have more control about their own support.

Get involved

We are asking carers to join this session to help shape Direct Payments for carers to enhance access to respite services.

The Trust wants to explore how Direct Payments may be offered as an option to carers to access respite services to support the carer rather than the service user.

Join us on Thursday 22 June 2023 at 2pm – 4pm at Knockbreda Health and Wellbeing Centre, 110 Saintfield Road, Belfast, BT8 6GR.

Tea, coffee and refreshments will be available.

If you would like to get involved, please register your interest in attending at  Carers will be reimbursed for out of pocket expenses including travel costs and replacement care if required.

For further information contact:

Anne Murphy

Carer Involvement and Projects Officer

Carers Support Service


Tel: 028 95049621