There may come a time when you can’t do things for yourself anymore. This may happen suddenly because you become ill or have an accident, or it may happen slowly as you get older. There are many different options available if you need some support and assistance, but how do you know which kind of support is right for you? 

Choosing the right care and support for you

Before you start looking for a solution, it’s a good idea to think about what is important to you and the things you most enjoy in your life. You may have particular interests or activities that you want to keep up, or you may simply want to spend time with your family or friends.

Thinking through what you need help with, and choosing your care and support can be very difficult. It’s a good idea to have someone to help you make these decisions, like a family member or friend. If you don’t have someone to support you, you may be able to get help from a local voluntary organisation. If you are having trouble understanding all the options, you may need someone who is trained in supporting people in this way and who can speak on your behalf.


We always recommend you approach the Council for an assessment, no matter what your circumstances or financial situation. Having an assessment is free of charge and it can help you and others understand your needs better and will help you think through the options. Even if you’re not eligible for support from the Council, we will always give you information and advice tailored to your circumstances and let you know if there are any other services which may be able to help you.


Staying in your own home 

Most people want to stay living in their own homes for as long as possible. Your own home is often the best place because you may have family and friends who live with you or nearby and you will be in a familiar environment. If it starts to become too difficult for you to move around your own home, there are a range of services available to help make your home safer for you live in.


Staying independent

If your needs change in a way that means you're suddenly unable to cope, or you need help for the first time after a period of being unwell or an accident, you may be able to get some support to get you back on your feet. Short-term support can help if you:

  • would like to regain the confidence and skills to live an independent life
  • need support to remain in your own home
  • have been in hospital or residential care and are now returning home.


Finding somewhere else to live

Sometimes you may not be able to continue to use your home freely, even after considering equipment and adaptations, and you decide that it’s better to move house. You may want to move to a smaller house like a bungalow or a retirement flat, or you may consider moving to a care home. If you are thinking about moving, it's worth considering whether it's best to stay in the area you are in now, or if it would be easier for you to be nearer to shops or closer to family or friends.


Deciding what kind of help you need and who will provide it

If you are staying in your own home, you may want to consider finding someone to come in and help you with daily tasks. Having someone to help you at home will mean you can stay living independently for longer. You could get someone to help you with:

  • personal care, such as washing or dressing
  • household tasks, such as cleaning and gardening
  • cooking or preparing meals
  • reminding you to do certain things, such as taking your medication
  • having someone to talk to
  • helping you get to an appointment.

The help you get at home can come in many forms. There are benefits to each of these, but the best option for you will depend on your individual circumstances and the particular things you want from the service. You could get help from:

  • a family member or friend
  • a care and support worker employed by a care provider, this is also called home care or home support
  • a personal assistant
  • a local voluntary organisation


Finding a care provider 

Once you have decided on the best option for you, you can use our CarePlace directory to search for care providers who can help you at home or care homes. Care providers have to be registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). CQC monitors, inspects and regulates these services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety. You will be able to see whether a particular provider is meeting these standards on the individual listing on CarePlace.

The Council also monitors how local services are doing and will take action if there are particular concerns about the quality of a service or the safety of a person people cared for.


How much will it cost?

What you pay will depend on your individual circumstances and the kind of care and support you need, who provides it and how often you need help. If you are making your own arrangements, you should always ask your care provider to tell you the costs upfront.

If you have an assessment from the Council, you will be given a financial assessment to complete. This will help the Council to consider whether you are eligible for financial support towards your care and support.


Useful contacts:

Richmond Council Adult Access Team
Address: Adult Social Services, Civic Centre, 44 York Street, Twickenham, TW1 3BZ
Phone: 020 8891 7971
Minicom: 18001 020 8891 7971

GoLocal for Sheen, Mortlake, Barnes, Twickenham or Whitton
Phone: 020 8973 1877

Community Partnership for Richmond, Kew, Ham, Petersham,Teddington or The Hamptons
Phone: 020 8831 6464