How long does it take to get a grant for those with neurological or neuromuscular illnesses leading to severe disability?
It takes a minimum of 3 months from the date of application when everything required has been submitted, for a decision on an application to be made. Applications received with less than THREE months from application to a proposed trip will be automatically declined.
If I meet the criteria will I automatically receive a grant?
Not every applicant who meet the criteria that we list will be successful in receiving financial aid. We only have a certain size pot of money available and receive many more applications — so we have a Panel who review all applications and have the difficult task of deciding who will be successful. This panel the “Applications Panel” are appointed on an annual basis. They spend a lot of time deciding who will receive a grant but do so at their discretion and do not provide reasons. There is no appeal from their decision. If you are not successful, you are welcome to apply again in 1 year.
You say it takes 3 months to apply for a grant, what if my holiday is sooner than that?
CS Disabled Holidays will only make an exception where it is an end of life situation. Such applications are usually done through our links with other charities, not directly and are extremely rare. Our rules are very clear, we do not accept applications which can not be approved prior to the holiday.
Are Applications anonymous?
Yes, Applications are assessed anonymously by our Applications Panel. The Applications Panel receive a report which includes most of the information that you provide but does not include your name or any other identifying information. The two questions that you answer, on why the holiday/break will benefit you and why you should financially qualify for the grant may be re-written to anonymise your answer if that is necessary. No information on age, race, sex or religion is provided.
I don't like using computers and email, can I have a paper form, like you used to do?
The charity has had to look at where it expends money, to try to ensure that its funds are available for Grants and Services rather than being spent on administration. One of the ways that it is doing this is by only accepting online applications. Paper Applications are no longer accepted.
You ask for very specific details about my holiday, but I don't want to book anything until I know if I am going to get a grant.
We strongly recommend that you do not book anything until you know if you are going to get a grant. However, our grants are for specific holidays on specific dates for a known price. We do require that you provide evidence of this as part of your application. This might be screen shots, or a picture from a holiday brochure, or a pro forma invoice from a holiday company. Most of the well known holiday companies that you are likely to be booking through will be happy to hold a holiday if you are booking sufficiently in advance while a grant application goes through.
It can be quite hard to get a GP to sign a form, sometimes they charge money to do this — do I really have to do this?
We have tried to give a good range of individuals who can sign your form, but you do have to have either an independent medically qualified individual who is involved in your care or a registered social worker. We have intentionally included individuals like physiotherapists or Occupational Therapists who will be able to confirm your diagnosis's and your level of physical disability Your Carer, or Care Manager or support worker can not sign your Form. A Registered Social Worker involved in your care can sign your form, they like the medically qualified individuals will have to provide their registration details. We do not accept Pharmacists who will know your medications but not your level of physical disability.
I am applying on the educational basis, what do I need to provide to prove that I meet that requirement?
You will need to explain how this trip will benefit you educationally — and why it is important to you? A Few Examples — CS Disabled Holidays have given grants to an individual studying film studies to go on a placement to Disney Studies for his dissertation, for an A' level student to go on a photography tour of Glasgow and a history of Art Student to have a tour of Paris. The Trust also sent a group of Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award students for their adventure exercise to space camp at Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.
How often can I apply for a grant or for access to the property matching service?
You can apply for any of the services provided by CS Disabled Holidays a year and a day after the last day of the holiday for which you were last awarded a grant (whether or not you accepted that grant). An example would be your application on the 9 March 2022 for a grant towards a holiday from 1 -15 December 2022 and you were notified that you had been successful on the 3 April 2022. You would be able to apply for your next grant on the 16 December 2023. If your application is declined, you can apply for the same service or a different service a year and a day after you were notified that your application had been declined.
Applications that are received earlier than the time period set out above the date will be automatically declined.
Can any individual left severely physically disabled through neurological or neuromuscular illness apply?
We have added a financial question – we expect only those individuals who have not had a holiday or a respite break in the last 12 months to apply – if the applicant can have a break without our assistance than we expect them to do so – our expectation is to provide assistance to those, who are not able to have a break without the aid or assistance of CS Disabled Holidays. We also expect individuals to investigate whether respite breaks or the cost of care is provided for in their care plans can be transferred to the cost of care during holidays – and if it can be is should be.
You ask about my sex, my ethnicity and my gender? Is this relevant?
This is a new question in 2023/2024, we are trying to ensure that we are fully representative. This information is not provided to anyone but will be used at the end of the year, to ensure that we have no hidden biases along with our complete anonymisation of the application process. These are non-mandatory information boxes that people may or may not choose to complete. The Trust is working to ensure it correctly represents all of society in all aspects of its work with no biases.