Any family affected by disability will be aware that the challenges can seem huge, insurmountable even. Sometimes all it takes is a little help or expertise to make things better. Here are few charities that specialise in helping disabled people and their families.

Age UK 

Whilst age is not a disability, it is disabling. Age UK is the UK’s largest charity focused on helping people to make the most of their later years.

The over-60s is the fastest-growing group in Society and Age UK provide services and support at a national and local level to “Inspire, enable and support older people”.

The Age UK network comprises around 150 local Age UKs throughout England and further help is available elsewhere through Age Cymru, Age NI and Age Scotland.

As well as information and factsheets, Age UK runs a free national advice line (8am – 7pm) 365 days a year, taking in excess of 250,000 calls annually.

Tel: 0800 678 1174.

Family Fund 

Family Fund supports families raising disabled or seriously ill children, usually through grant awards. Further to that, as they’ve seen the number of families approaching them increase, they also provide vital information and signpost to other support services that families can use. The Family Fund website and social media channels share up to date information about other organisations and agencies that offer information, advice or support services for disabled children and their families.

Tel: 01904 550055


Mencap  focuses on the needs of people with a learning disability and campaigns to make sure they are valued equally, listened to and included.

Mencap has a network of over 400 local groups to reach people across the UK. They hold a valuable archive of information on different subjects relating directly to learning disability, from social care through to respite holidays.

Their Family Hub is a specialist online community for parents and family carers of people with a learning disability, and is a place for sharing experiences, advice and support.

Mencap Direct: 0808 808111 (9am-5pm Mon – Fri)


The Motability Scheme is best known for enabling disabled people to get mobile by exchanging their mobility allowance to lease a new car, scooter or powered wheelchair. What you may not realise is that Motability is a national charity, that can also provide grants towards the cost of a vehicle, adaptations or driving lessons.

Last year they helped 7,500 scheme customers and their families to become mobile by awarding over £20 million in charitable grants.

Motability funding is limited and therefore available only to those most in need. With this in mind, Motability means test all applications and any help they give is always towards the best value solution to help people cope with their mobility needs.

To discuss the grant scheme,

Tel: 01279 635999 (8.30am – 5.30pm Mon – Fri)
General enquiries, Tel: 0300 456 4566

Rainbow Trust

Not all support can be measured in financial terms; sometimes the most valuable support is having other people listen and help out in other ways. Rainbow Trust provides families who have a child under 18 years old with a life threatening or terminal illness and need bespoke help.

Rainbow Trust estimate that there are thousands of children and young people in the UK living with a life limiting or life threatening condition who may require palliative care. Many of these children and their families are able to cope or are not in a ‘crisis situation’. However, thousands of families have to face the very real possibility that their child may pass away and struggle to cope on a day-to-day basis.

Support is given to those families in the greatest need. Their family support workers provide a lifeline to these families and children. Not only do they respond to the needs of parents and carers, they support the whole family including the unwell child, brothers, sisters and grandparents – at home, in hospital and in the community. Any family can receive support from the moment of their child or young person’s diagnosis.

Tel: 01372 363438


Revitalise is a national charity providing short breaks and holidays (respite care) for disabled people and carers; a service they regard as “Essential”. They currently run three accessible holiday centres in Chigwell in Essex, Southampton and Southport.

Revitalise provide respite care as part of their mission towards enabling disabled people not only the same rights, freedoms and responsibilities as others but also the same quality of life.

In a refreshing alternative to traditional residential respite care their centres cater for adults with a variety of different disabilities. Each centre offers short breaks in a relaxed, holiday-style environment, with a variety of trips and activities. Guests on Revitalise breaks are supported by volunteers who provide companionship and assistance.

Tel: 0303 303 0145


Scope is a charity determined to make this country a place where disabled people have the same opportunities as everyone else. They provide support, information and advice to more than a quarter of a million disabled people and their families every year. They offer support to disabled people and campaign to raise awareness of the issues that matter to them.

Whether you, your child or those you work with, have a physical impairment, learning disability or any other condition, they have information that can help.

Scope also runs a free and confidential helpline: 0808 800 3333 (weekdays: 9am – 5pm)


Disabled children face a host of challenges during their young lives so it’s important Whilst The NHS should always be a family’s first port of call for mobility equipment, if your local NHS Wheelchair Service does not provide equipment to meet the essential mobility needs of your child then Whizz-Kidz may be able to help.

Whizz-Kidz provide disabled children and young people with vital mobility equipment, and life journey services such as wheelchair skills training, camps and even work placements and work skills days, giving them opportunities to build friendships, gain skills, have fun and look forward to a bright future.

Contact the Whizz-Kidz Children’s Services team to start your application.

Tel : 0800 151 3350 or email: