Our helpline


Contact a Family is a national charity for families with disabled children. For information and advice on any aspect of caring for a disabled child:

  • Freephone: 0808 808 3555
    9.30am-5pm, Monday-Friday; free from UK landlines and UK mobiles
    (Answer within five rings)

 

How we can help you

Our parent advisers will help you with any issue around raising a disabled child, whatever your concern or question.

We offer families confidential advice on any issue, including:

  • benefits and sources of financial help
  • education advice for additional needs
  • sources of support - including groups set up by parents
  • services that you might be entitled to - for example, aids and equipment.

We have access to a translation service.

Listen to a parent talk about the help we gave, or watch our helpline advisers explain the support they offer.

 

Getting prepared for your helpline call

Demand for our helpline is high, so you may have to wait to speak to a parent adviser.

The busiest times of the day tend to be between 10am and 11.30am and at lunchtime between 1pm and 2pm. Calling in the afternoon can help.

We suggest you do the following to prepare for your call:

  • Try to organise a quiet place where you can talk if you can.
  • Have a pen and paper to hand and any documents you wish to discuss.
  • Your call may take up to 20 minutes, so please set aside some time.
  • Remember that your call is confidential - see our confidentiality procedure further down this page.

 

Contacting us through Facebook, Twitter and email

If you're contacting us through Facebook, Twitter or email, where possible please provide information such as the age of your child and the area you live. This will help us find other sources of support.

If your enquiry is particularly urgent, we recommend that you call our helpline.

 

How we improve our helpline

Twice a year we conduct a survey on our helpline and online services, including our website and social media pages.

In our survey of March 2016:

  • 95% of helpline users said they were satisfied or very satisfied with the service.
  • 95% of website users said they were satisfied or very satisfied with the service.

Find out how to make a compliment or complaint about any of our services.

 

Confidentiality and data protection

The Contact a Family helpline is confidential. This means we will not share your personal details with anyone outside of Contact a Family without your permission.

There are a few exceptional situations where we may have to breach confidentiality and pass on your details without your consent.

Situations where we might need to break confidentiality:

  • A child is at risk of harm.
  • A vulnerable adult is at risk of harm.
  • A terrorist threat has been made.
  • We have been ordered to share information with the courts.
  • A person poses a serious risk to others.
  • A person is threatening or abusing staff or preventing the helpline service from being delivered to others.

If a decision is made to break confidentiality, we will make reasonable effort to keep your informed of what we intend to do.

 

How our helpline is accredited

Helplines Partnership

Contact a Family is a member of the Helplines Partnership, and the helpline is accredited to their quality standard. Visit the Helplines Partnership website to find out more.

 

Related information