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Self directed support and personal budgets

Self-directed support is the new way that social care services are delivered.  It means that you choose and control what you do with your time, what help you get and from whom.  Anyone aged 18 or over who is eligible for social care support can use this system to get a personal budget and the help that they need. 

Steps to getting a personal budget are below. This is a summary of the booklet 'Your Personal Budget' which you can download from the documents section.

Step 1 – Your assessment.
The first step is to fill in a self –assessment questionnaire with help from your social worker and your family and carers. 

Step 2 – Finding out your indicative social care budget
The social worker will use this to calculate your indicative budget.  It is called this as it’s a good indication of what your personal budget will be.  The final amount will only be agreed once your support plan has been approved.

Step 3 – Building your support plan
This is your plan for what you want to do or achieve, and how you want to spend your budget.  It is created by you and your social worker and family. This plan will be reviewed once a year by you and your social worker to check it is still working for you.

Step 4 – Getting your plan agreed
The council will then agree your plan, and confirm your personal budget.

Step 5 – Start using your personal budget
You could use your budget to pay for services with a provider such as a charity or care organisation, by hiring a personal assistant to help you, or by using council services.  There are lots of options for services you can buy. 

Booklets to help you - these are all available to download on the left.

  • The booklet 'Your personal budget' is a general guide to how they work and how to start the process. 
  • The booklet ‘Guide to Buying Services’ will help you find services and stay safe. 
  • The booklet ‘Becoming an employer’ will help you to employ a Personal Assistant (PA).  It is a large document, so we have split it into three downloads below.  Part 1 contains chapters 1 and 2 (Recruiting your PA and when they start work).  Part 2 is chapters 3 and 4 (Managing your PA's time, and paying your PA).  Part 3 is chapters 5 and 6 (what to do if there is a problem and templates of useful forms and examples). 
  • ASIST have also produced some useful booklets that will help you.
  • The Personal budget factsheets are on the following topics:
        • Personal budget factsheet 1 - Introduction to personal budgets
        • Personal budget factsheet 2 - What is self-directed assessment?
        • Personal budget factsheet 3 - What is a resource allocation system?
        • Personal budget factsheet 4 - What is a support plan?
        • Personal budget factsheet 5 - How can I receive my personal budget?
        • Personal budget factsheet 6 - Using a personal assistant (PA)
        • Personal budget factsheet 7 - Buying services and support
        • Personal budget factsheet 8 - Keeping safe and managing risks
        • Personal budget factsheet 9 - Review: see how it's working

You can get paper copies of these booklets by asking your social worker or by phoning Adult social care reception on 0113 247 8630.

Getting further help:

  • Speak to your social worker.
  • Watch the film clips on You Tube for inspiration and stories from Leeds residents who have a personal budget.  Web link on the right.
  • Speak to ASIST at Leeds Centre for Integrated Living, the Leeds personal budget and direct payments support service.  Call them on 0113 214 3599. Their website is linked on the right.
  • Be part of Free to Live - the personal budgets peer support network in Leeds.  Speak to them via ASIST on 0113 214 3599 or see their website link on the right.
  • Use the website Leeds Directory to find local services online.  The link is on the right. 

Find out what local people think about personal budgets:

People across Leeds were asked their views on personal budgets and the results are now available. Visit the documents section to see the results how the figures compare with the national average. This work was done using a research tool known as POET (personalisation outcome evaluation tool). The research was run by the charity In Control, who developed the tool, and who conduct similar research across the UK.