Targeted Short Breaks Activities

Targeted Short Break

To be eligible to access the Targeted Short Breaks service, your child or young person must:

  • be ordinarily resident in Cumbria, and  
  • have a disability as defined in the Equality Act 2010, and  
  • have an Education, Health and Care Plan, and  
  • be within the academic year groups Year 1 to Year 13.  

If you would prefer to speak to someone directly about Short Breaks, please email the service at:

What are Targeted Short Break?

Targeted Short Breaks Activities are specifically designed to meet the needs of children and young people with disabilities and give parents and carers the opportunity to take a ‘Short Break’ from caring. Each year eligible families are granted 76 hours of free activities, run by several providers in their area.

We recognise that, on occasion, children and young people with disabilities require additional or higher levels of support in order to participate in activities. 

Targeted Short Breaks can be provided via a number of different organisations including schools, charities and the Local Authority. For instance, special school extended activities, after school clubs, breakfast clubs, holiday activities or other organisations that run summer schemes or leisure actives would count as targeted short breaks.   

Families with disabled children often access a mixture of targeted short breaks and Universal Services.  

Westmorland and Furness Council offer their own targeted short break services which gives eligible children and young people in the area access to 76 hours of free activities across the year. 

Who are Short Break Activities for?

Although all eligible children and young people will be offered access to Targeted Short Break Activities, most of our current providers are only able to support children and young people with low to moderate level needs.

They are unable to support children or young people that have a higher-level need where 1 to 1 care, administering medicine or personal care requirements such as toileting are required.  

If your child has a higher-level need, Specialist Services Short Breaks may be appropriate for you. For more information your Social Worker directly if you have one, or contact our support team at


A note about our Targeted Short Breaks Statement

Please note that our Targeted Short Breaks statement (available to download on the right of this page) is still in Cumbria County Council branding. This statement will continue to be adhered to by both new Unitary Authorities until next year, when Westmorland and Furness Council will conduct a review.

Targeted short breaks cancellation policy

Inevitably there needs to be a cancellation policy, concerning when a child or family want to cancel an activity, the provider cancels the activity and occasionally the local authority cancels an activity. 

Child or family:

After you have booked on to an activity or series of activities you may find that you need to cancel them.

  • If you cancel 24 hours or more before the start of a series of activities or individual activity, you will automatically get those hours back. 
  • If you cancel with less than 24 hours notice you will not automatically get those hours back. 
  • If you cancel part way through a serious of activities, you will not automatically get those hours back.
  • If you miss one activity in a series, you will not get those hours back.

If someone else cancels: 

  • If the provider cancels, then you will get those hours back. 
  • If the local authority cancels you will get your hours back.

Page last reviewed: 27/02/2024

Skip back to top of page