Please, Would Someone Stop the World for a Moment?

Carolyn Voisey by Carolyn Voisey Additional Needs

Carolyn Voisey

Carolyn Voisey

Mum to one incredible little dude, I work full time in higher education and have my own small business as a jewellery designer/creator. I love noth...

In this rant, sorry blog post, I wish to explain a little about the DFG process.

If any process could have been devised by Satan himself to brutalise families, destroy health and leave you feeling like you’ve been slammed into by a juggernaut, then it’s the DFG.

For those blessed folk who know not what this monstrosity is, the DFG is the disability facilities grant.

Put in place for local authorities to provide support to those who need to adapt their homes due to disability, allowing them to remain living there and not in care.

It is a significant amount (up to £30,000, not means tested for children).

However that money vanishes in the blink of an eye; doors widened for wheelchair access, ramps, rooms converted into downstairs bedrooms and wet rooms all costs money.

Additional factors such as moving utilities, a sloping site slope and extending rooms as they don’t satisfy building regulations for wheelchair access all adds up. Sam’s adaptations are estimated at £130K.

As Daddy is a full time carer and Mummy works all the hours that she can, finding an additional £100,000 is tricky.

In the meantime our own health has taken a backseat, both of us have chronic back pain and have been left with long term, serious health issues to deal with as a direct result of being carers.

But like all SN parents, we’ll do anything for our child no matter what the financial, and personal, cost.

I have never doubted that we would get there in the end and after almost 5 years of all of this, that Sam’s life would improve.

What I didn’t expect was how difficult it has been to get builders through the door.

Frankly, the profession should be ashamed of itself; over 40 contacted, 8 replied, 4 turned up to do site visits and so far only one quote has been received (one on the way).

And in order to formally apply for a DFG, we need two quotes. Most don’t want to know as soon as the phrase ‘DFG’ is mentioned.

You would think wouldn’t you, with the economy as it is that trades would want to take work on... especially to the tune of £130K.

Apparently not. Never have I felt as defeated as I do now.


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