The social context
The need for appropriate respite care to support families in stress was raised as an issue for most of the other priority families in this report. It is also an issue for families who care for children or adults who have a range of other disabilities and/or functional impairments.
Respite may be needed for failing health, the challenging behaviour or disability of a family member, or because of family breakdown. Respite care allows families under extreme stress time to recover, to survive and to continue to provide care for their family members. The cost to the community if those families were unable to provide that care would be prohibitive.
Respite care is funded in a variety of ways. Entitlement to funded respite care depends on the funding requirements of the particular funding source, rather than on the needs of the family; and there are a number of families in need of respite for whom there is no funding source.
Stock take of services currently supporting families in need of respite
Details of service
Children with challenging behaviour
Community Living Trust
Has two homes providing six respite places in Hamilton
Other family members
Often, these are the only people families can trust to care for their children while they have a break
School teacher aides
These people know the children and may offer weekend respite care in a private capacity
Children’s Ward (Bay of Plenty DHB)
On rare occasions, such children may be admitted to the ward to provide carers with a break, but this is actively discouraged; no funding and no service
Children with mental health issues
New contract to provide respite placements for 0-18 year-olds registered with the mental health service
This adult mental facility has taken some young people for respite on rare occasions
Children with intellectual disability
Can provide some support through its whanau support programme, but has difficulty finding caregivers; no places available in residential facilities
Children with physical disability
Te Whare Poi Poi
Provides a four-bed respite facility in Hamilton which provides respite care for children with disabilities from throughout the Waikato and Bay of Plenty
Operates elsewhere in the Bay of Plenty, but not in Tauranga