Support for disabled children and their families

The disabled children’s service is a specialist social work service based at Hackney Learning Trust.

The service:

  • provides social care support to children and young people with impairments and their families
  • provides support early on before a situation has time to develop and have serious consequences for the disabled child, or young person, and their family


Social model of disability assessment

We use a social model of disability to assess how we can help families. This looks at the whole person and their family, by carrying out an initial assessment, carer’s assessment and transition assessment for post 16s, to evaluate the impact that impairments and difficulties have on their right to enjoy an ‘ordinary life’ and access the same opportunities that non-disabled children take for granted.

If there are high risk concerns, these are referred to the children in need or looked after children services based at Hillman Street.

For those families where it is agreed that they can have a care support package, this can be through a named provider or by direct payments. They can also be referred to other services for family support and early help, for example, play schemes, leisure activities and voluntary organisations.

Short break scheme

In addition, the short break scheme is administered in conjunction with the disabled children’s service in which Hackney’s children and young people in receipt of disability living allowance (DLA) at medium or high rate are able to access their local short break core offer. For more information see short breaks.

Transition services

We also provide transition services (age 14-18) and all young people using our services will have an assessment at age 16 as a referral mechanism to assess their eligibility for adult social care services.

In addition, our targeted health outreach team work with young people age 14-19 who are expected not to be eligible to access adult social care services. This would include people with autism without a learning disability, people with moderate learning disabilities and those who have a SEN statement (Statement of Educational Need) or an EHC Plan (Education and Health Care Plan).

They provide support and advice around health and well-being, transitioning into further education and increasing independence into adulthood. The work is person centred and supports the young person to achieve their own goals eg. be more independent, travel training and accessing activities etc. The team also run a weekly youth club at Forest Road for 14-18 (up to 25 for those with SEND) year olds, a weekly fitness session in a Better leisure centre, and a monthly film club for young people with autism. They also provide activities during school and college holidays and co-produce workshops based on health.

Contact the targeted health outreach team on 020 7014 7176 or send an email to to request more information and to make a referral.

Page updated on: 26 October 2022

Disabled Children’s Service


Hackney Service Centre
1, Hillman Street
E8 1DY


Opening times

  • Mon to Fri: 9am - 5pm